The Alwood Oak

The Alwood Oak (HM17MA)

Location: Blacksburg, VA 24060 Montgomery County
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Country: United States of America
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N 37° 13.677', W 80° 25.401'

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Dedicated October 14, 2011 in tribute to William Bradford Alwood

This bur oak (Quercus macrocarpa) was planted around 1895 by Professor Alwood at the site of the Virginia Agricultural Experiment Station. One of many trees planted by Alwood, it is the only living member of a collection he documented to represent the first arboretum located on the 283 acres of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute (VPI) during his service here from 1888 to 1904.

In 1888, Professor William Preston hired William Bradfor Alwood as vice-director of the Virginia Agricultural Experiment Station. Alwood was the first professor and head of the Department of Horticulture, Mycology, and Entomology at Virginia Tech (then known as the Virginia Agricultural and Mechanical College and later as VPI). During Alwood's 16 years at VPI, his accomplishments set the stage for modern horticulture in Virginia.

Professor Alwood's research, teaching, service, and international outreach in horticulture, plant pathology, and entomology changed agriculture worldwide. He taught Virginians how to manage plant diseases and insect pests earning him the reputation as the savior of the Virginia fruit industry. Professor Alwood was also noted as the father of Virginia horticulture.

Alwood published widely and was respected worldwide by scientist, heads of state, and the general public. After leaving VPI, Alwood was appointed chief enologist for the USDA Bureau of Chemistry until the Prohibition era. An international leader in wine grapes and enology, in 1907 Alwood was awarded the prestigious M?rite Agricole medal by the French government. VPI recognized Alwood with a certificate of merit in 1923. Upon donating his vast library to VPI in 1927, President Julian Burruss recognized Alwood's loyalty as a Hokie with the following statement:
"The splendid service which you rendered this institution will ever be remembered and it is my hope that some day your name will be honored in some permanent manner, which will remain here for all time to let those who come after us know of your part in the making of this institution."... President Julian Burruss, Feb. 3, 1927
HM NumberHM17MA
Year Placed2011
Placed ByVirginia Tech Board of Visitors
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Sunday, September 28th, 2014 at 11:56am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)17S E 551154 N 4120315
Decimal Degrees37.22795000, -80.42335000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 37° 13.677', W 80° 25.401'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds37° 13' 40.62" N, 80° 25' 24.06" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)540, 434
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 601 Drillfield Dr, Blacksburg VA 24060, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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