HOLIDAY GIFT IDEAS!
have several Herbie items left for sale:
Wooden ornaments ($75), bottle stoppers ($35), magnets ($14), bowls
plates ($75), cutting boards ($25), bookmarks ($5), books ($20),
ashes ($5), desk clock ($65), baseball bat ($230), vase ($200),
end table ($400) and a few varied sized t shirts ($20).
are open M-F, 8:30 am - 4:30 pm.
Town of Yarmouth
200 Main Street
Yarmouth, ME 04096
Marcia Noyes, Yarmouth Community Services Director
& Debra Hopkins, Yarmouth Tree Warden
Yarmouth, Maine was home to New England’s largest American
elm tree, affectionately known as “Herbie” since the
1950’s and was on the State Register of Big Trees since 1980.
Frank Knight was Yarmouth’s Tree Warden for over 50 years,
and took extra care of and pride in Herbie. After 50 years of treating
Herbie and saving it from the extreme ravages of the Dutch elm disease,
it was determined that Herbie had to be taken down to avoid further
spread of the disease and for public safety. Herbie grew on a tiny
little corner on Route 88 and Yankee Drive in a congested historic
neighborhood. At one time, Yarmouth’s entire quaint Main Street
village was lined with majestic American elm trees—all of
which are long gone due to Dutch elm disease.
impressive stature of over 110 feet in height, 120 foot crown width
and over 7 foot diameter presented a challenge for removal by Whitney
Tree Services. Prior to the actual cut down date of January 18th,
Whitney Tree Services removed over 15 upper limbs to aide in the
one day public process of cutting down the behemoth tree. The scheduled
cut down date was delayed by a day due to a bad winter blizzard,
and finally happened during yet another snow storm on January 19th,,
2010 in front of a large media and public audience. It took an 85
ton crane from Cote Crane in Auburn to assist with the historic
tree felling. The actual cutting of Herbie required a special Husquavarna
chain saw with a massive 52” bar. The majestic elm came crashing
down to a sea of onlookers who cheered and even got a bit teary.
The 39,700 pound trunk was loaded on a flat bed and trucked free
of charge by Scott Dugas to JD Sullivan & Sons Sawmill in New
A special “Lucas Mill” from Kingfield, Maine had to
be brought in to cut Herbie’s mighty trunk—94 inches
across at its widest point.
anxious to know Herbie’s exact age. Peter Lammert of the Maine
Forest Service was designated as the official counter of Herbie’s
growth rings. After a week of careful sanding and cutting, Herbie
was proclaimed to be 217 years old.
This was not to be the end of our beloved Herbie! In order to preserve
Herbie, a citizen committee known as The Herbie Project opted to
give and/or sell this precious 217 year old elm wood to various
wood artisans and crafters. Proceeds from the sales of the various
items would fund Yarmouth’s first Tree Trust to plant new
street trees in Yarmouth. With over 8000 board feet in Herbie there
was plenty of “Tree for All” and wood for all sorts
of creative ideas.
Over 50 mostly
Maine artisans created chairs, stools, tables, benches, desk, clock,
music stand, guitar, lamps, platters, plates, bowls, vases, bracelets,
cutting boards, bottle stoppers, knives and bookmarks that were
among the many items that were sold at the 2010 Yarmouth Clam Festival
and at The Herbie Project
“Tree for All” Silent & Live Auction at DeLorme
Map in Yarmouth on November 13, 2010.
Thanks to his personal interest, an article written by Associated
Press author David Sharp, Herbie became world famous and viral in
less than 24 hours of its removal on that fateful winter snowy day
on January 19th, 2010. Articles and media coverage have raised local,
regional, state, national, and even international awareness due
to extensive publicity (some samples enclosed denoted with *):
• Associated Press articles by David Sharp* (even appeared
in the Bangkok Newspaper!)
• Local TV media coverage: WCSH, WGME, WMTW and NECN
• National Public Radio
• CBS Evening news piece with Katie Couric and Steve Hartman
in February 2010.
• Many YouTube video clips
• Local newspaper coverage – Maine Sunday Telegram,
Portland Press Herald, The Forecaster
• The Boston Globe*
• Northern Woodlands magazine (by Scott Gibson)* – November
• Sawmill & Woodlot Management magazine (by Jan Santerre)*
– October/November 2010
• Antique Week (by Eric Rodenberg)* – December 3, 2010
• Advertising award for ST Vreeland’s Herbie Project
Why The Herbie Project is reCOGnizable!
The Herbie Project committee is 13 dedicated individuals comprised
of Yarmouth citizens, town staff, state forest service staff and
community members. Most of The Herbie Project activities contributed
to boosting the local economy; by processing and handling Herbie’s
bountiful wood, the sawmill received a much-needed financial boost
during difficult economic times. The Herbie Project also supported
Maine’s creative economy with selling art work of over 50
wood artisans. Local Yarmouth businesses such as Vreeland Advertising,
Dugas Trucking and DeLorme Map gave back to the community with their
generous corporate donations.
Prior to product
sales, a community fund raising campaign raised over $15,000 in
private and corporate donations (see sample flyer enclosed). The
sales of Herbie products netted $19,000 after the July 2010 Clam
Festival and an additional $28,000 after the “Tree for All”
auction in November. After all the expenses were paid (including
the entire tree removal and processing) there is $45,000 in Yarmouth’s
Tree Trust account to ensure that new street trees will continue
in Herbie’s legacy to remove air and water pollution, to improve
property values, to provide animal habitats and to beautify the
places where we live and work. All of those benefits have been or
will be realized without any increase to local property taxes, which
makes The Herbie Project very sustainable program with ability for
replication by other communities.
you to all who helped make the Herbie Project such a success!
After the completion of our on-line, live and silent auctions, we
are reassessing our Herbie items stock and our next steps.
you for your patience and your support of this tremendous project.
We have already raised $45,000 for the Yarmouth Tree Trust --to
plant new street trees in Yarmouth.
was home to New England’s largest American Elm
tree – affectionately known since the 1950s as
“Herbie” – that used to reign over
the corner of Yankee Drive and East Main Street. Like
so many American Elms, Herbie finally succumbing to
Dutch Elm Disease, an introduced fungus that is spread
by bark beetles. After decades of diligent effort by
Yarmouth’s volunteer Tree Wardens Frank Knight
and Debbie Hopkins and 217 years of life, Herbie was
removed in January of 2010. Yarmouth has lost nearly
800 American Elms to this disease in the past fifty
years, although none as grand as Herbie. In honor of
Herbie’s legacy, the Town of Yarmouth seeks to
replace this majestic tree and others lost in previous
years with new, disease-resistant elms and other types
of trees. In order to do this, Yarmouth is creating
a Tree Trust.
is a Tree Trust?
A Tree Trust is an investment in Yarmouth’s quality
of place. The large, broad-leaved trees lining the streets
of Yarmouth need care and eventual replacement. The
cost associated with these activities is considerable,
but the benefits of street trees more than justify the
You can help!
Town of Yarmouth is asking for donations from citizens,
businesses and friends of Herbie to help fund Herbie’s
removal and replacement but especially to create a Yarmouth
Tree Trust. Your contribution will ensure our town will
remain green and beautiful for our children and grandchildren’s
2010-2011 Yarmouth Community Services
The Herbie Project