Slice from the Council Oak

Date: c. 1700

 

Description: This slice was once part of a very important bur oak tree in Sioux City: the Council Oak. Planted sometime in the 1700s, the tree, according to legend, was the site of many important Native American tribe meetings and councils. Legends say that Lewis and Clark met with local tribes under the tree on their journey, as did Dr. John Cook when he began the original plat of Sioux City. The tree stood proudly as a part of Sioux City history near Riverside Park. A monument was erected near the tree in 1933 to commemorate its importance, but even then the tree was falling apart. The trunk was filled with concrete in the 1940s to help stabilize it, and in the 50s a wind storm blew away most of the branches. Later the Council Oak was found to be located on private property rather than public land. Most of the tree was cut down in the later 1950s, and the stump removed in the 1970s. This slice, however, was preserved and generously donated to the museum. A new Council Oak was planted after the stump was removed, which sits today on Council Oak Drive.

 

Donor: John and Elaine Seubert