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The Tree

Years before Europeans first stepped foot in California….

Decades before Martin Luther challenged the foundation of the Western religious tradition…

A century before Galileo claimed that the earth revolved around the sun….

…a 200 foot old-growth coast redwood tree stood in what is now Big Sur, California, approximately 36.2703° N, 121.8064° W.


The Tree, circa 2010, directly behind the bride.

And there it stood for close to 500 years.  From 1983 onwards it hovered mere feet from the non-profit art space, Henry Miller Memorial Library, and in the subsequent 30 years it bore witness to countless weddings, outdoor performances, movie screenings, and so much more.

Until December 2, 2012.

At 9 am, staff member Mike Scutari was eating breakfast in the back office when he heard that terrifying, unmistakable sound.  He ran out and instantly saw an explosion of sawdust near the base of the tree, as if a stick of dynamite was detonated in its trunk. See him tell his tale HERE!

And then it fell.  (Listen to an approximate event sound HERE)

Slowly, glacially, but not without a fight, defiantly taking down a power pole, telephone lines and other trees with it.

The tree was no more.

The Tree, December 2, 2012, about four hours after the fall.

Upon examining the wood, local lumberjacks and millers were amazed at what they found: pure, pristine, unadulterated redwood, ideal for artistic or household uses like tables, benches, counters, doors, and paneling.

According to the National Park Service, “96 percent of the original old-growth coast redwoods have been logged.”  So when a tree of this stature falls, and when it’s discovered to be comprised of pure, beautiful redwood, it is nothing short of a miracle.

Working with local lumberjacks and millers, the Henry Miller Memorial Library is now selling kiln-dried slabs as well as slabs in the process of drying. See under ‘buy’ above. We will bring slabs to the Library in groups of four at a time. You will be able to come and view the ones we have on display at any time convenient to you.

You will be unable to find old-growth redwood of such quality and consistency, nor from such a hallowed and historic location.

Stay in touch!  Please e-mail Magnus Toren at, or call 831-667-2574 to make an appointment to view the wood.

2 Comments Post a comment
  1. 03/19/2013
    Gary Smith

    Could you make available small chunks of the wood for sale too? Many people would buy them as momentoes.


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