A Brief History of Arbor Day
The first Arbor Day took place on April 10, 1872 in Nebraska. It was the brainchild of Julius Sterling Morton. Julius was a Nebraska journalist and politician originally from Michigan. Throughout his long and productive career, Morton worked to improve agricultural techniques in his adopted state and throughout the United States when he served as President Grover Cleveland's Secretary of Agriculture. But his most important legacy is Arbor Day. Morton felt that Nebraska's landscape and economy would benefit from the wide-scale planting of trees. He set an example himself planting orchards, shade trees and wind breaks on his own farm and he urged his neighbors to follow suit. Morton's real opportunity, though, arrived when he became a member of Nebraska's state board of agriculture. He proposed that a special day be set aside dedicated to tree planting and increasing awareness of the importance of trees. Nebraska's first Arbor Day was an amazing success. More than one million trees were planted.
A second Arbor Day took place in 1884 and the young state made it an annual legal holiday in 1885, using April 22nd to coincide with Morton's birthday. In the years following that first Arbor Day, Morton's idea spread beyond Nebraska with Kansas, Tennessee, Minnesota and Ohio all proclaiming their own Arbor Days. Today all 50 states celebrate Arbor Day although the dates may vary in keeping with the local climate. At the federal level, in 1970, President Richard Nixon proclaimed the last Friday in April as National Arbor Day. Sometimes one good idea can make a real difference.
A Brief History of Arbor Day in Central Square
The First Arbor Day Celebration for the Village of Central Square was held Friday April 25, 2008 at Goettel Park. About 121 people turned out for the celebration. The Central Square Fire Companies Auxiliary handed out seedlings. Fulton Savings Bank donated a weeping snow fountain cherry and a flowering crabtree. The Central Square Lions Club and Village of Central Square donated a tulip tree. The Lion and Tiger Cub Scouts from Pack 711 of Hastings worked very hard to earn a tree to donate to their community. They leader challenged them to collect 3000 cans in 7 months. They did and with the help of Senior Girl Scout Troop 318 of Central Square the scouts donated a flowering Cleveland Pear Tree to the park. The Lions Club sold hotdogs and there was face painting and crafts for the kids.
A Tree-mendous Celebration Held on the Last Friday of April