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103-foot white oak tree by Georgia Tech tower, one of oldest in metro Atlanta, removed

WXIA-TV Atlanta logo WXIA-TV Atlanta 1/14/2022 Jeff Hullinger
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Quietly with little fanfare on Friday afternoon, is the exit of an Atlanta landmark by the Georgia Tech in Midtown Atlanta. 

The 103-foot white oak tree near Georgia Tech Tower, one of the oldest and largest trees in the Atlanta metro area, was removed because of root rot that created a risk of falling, according to the university.

"Standing 103 feet high and almost as iconic as Tech Tower itself, this majestic hardwood has reigned over campus for more than a century," a statement from Georgia Tech reads.

The towering white oak can be spotted in many photos of Georgia Tech, dating back to the 19th century.

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Associate Professor Hugh Crawford from the School of Literature, Media, and Communication will receive several large pieces of the oak. In partnership with Serve-Learn-Sustain, Crawford plans to honor and celebrate the magnificent tree.

He will lead a spring semester sophomore course on the cultural history of trees and the Tech Tower white oak. 

Students will have the opportunity to write an epitaph for the tree.

If Atlanta is "a city within a forest" the Tech Tower white oak was a compass point, a green shining star, for generations off North Avenue.

"Loving the new view, but missing our old arboreal friend," the university wrote in a Tweet.

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