Saturday, August 30, 2014 · 12:27 p.m.

Replacement Osage tree to be planted on courthouse lawn

Tree donated by Orange Grove Center

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The tree was well older than 100 years old and may have dated to the construction of the first Hamilton County Courthouse in 1879. (Photo: Staff)

Two months after a century-old Osage orange tree gracefully fell on the Hamilton County Courthouse lawn, a replacement will be planted Thursday morning. 

The planting will occur at 10:30 a.m.

City officials will be joined by representatives from Orange Grove Center, who announced Monday they would be donating the new tree to the county. 

The old Osage, known for its twisted, knotted trunk, had been the site of countless weddings and events. 

Orange Grove Center, founded in 1953, serves more than 700 children and adults with developmental disabilities. Orange Grove draws its name and logo from an old grove of Osage trees once located along Main Street, where the center's original facility was housed before it was moved in 1970. 

Prior to its usage by Orange Grove, the facility was home to the Orange Grove School facility, built in 1910. 

In a news release, the center said it kept its name to recognize how the community had worked to transfer the school to become Orange Grove 60 years ago. 

"Orange Grove has always kept the name and the logo as a poignant reminder that a loving community came together and gave them the first property and structure to aid their mission," the release reads. 

Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger was also quoted as saying he hoped the new tree would be the site of meaningful occasions for residents in the years to come.

"We are grateful to have this new tree from Orange Grove," Coppinger said. "In the coming years, people will marry under its branches and have shade provided for those seeking a quiet place for reflection and contemplation. This tree will serve as a reminder of the wonderful work done by the Orange Grove Center."

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