Friendship Oak is a 500-year-old southern live oak located on the Gulf Park campus of the University of Southern Mississippi in Long Beach, Mississippi. The campus was formerly Gulf Park College for Women from 1921 until 1971.History and folkloreFriendship Oak dates from the year 1487, and was a sapling at the time that Christopher Columbus first visited the New World. According to legend, those who enter the shade of its branches will remain friends for all their lives.In the 1920s, poet Vachel Lindsay taught at Gulf Park College for Women and read poetry to students beneath the branches of Friendship Oak.Friendship Oak was the 110th tree to be registered with the Live Oak Society. At the time of registration (circa 1940), the tree's trunk circumference was 14 feet (4.3 m).In 1950, the oak was featured in a Life magazine article about Gulf Park College, where students attended classes under the tree.Tree measurementsOn August 20, 2011, staff from the Mississippi Forestry Commission took the following measurements on Friendship Oak: The tree was 59 feet (18 m) in height with a trunk diameter of 5.75 feet (1.75 m).The circumference of the trunk was 19.8 feet (6.0 m), and the crown spread was 155 feet (47 m).The average length of the main lateral limbs was 60 feet (18 m) from the trunk with an average circumference of 7.5 feet (2.3 m) for the limbs at the trunk.The tree's crown covered approximately 16,000 square feet (1486 square meters), and lateral roots extended 150 feet (45.7 m).Our Long Beach route maker website makes visiting Friendship Oak and other Long Beach attractions simple, and helps you make a travel plan personal to you.
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Friendship Oak Reviews
From August 1976 through August 1983 I was an Assistant Professor at USM-Gulf Park. My office windows looked out at this beautiful tree. Back then it had an open-air treehouse where Vachael Lindsey on... more »
You cannot go uner the tree anymore, but it is still a sight to behold. You might be able to gather some acorns that have fallen to the wayside. This tree is over 500 years old and sithstood Katrina. more »
I'm a fan of the beautiful southern live oaks that live throughout the coastal region of South Mississippi, so a visit to this historic tree was necessary stop. Located on the Gulf Coast campus of The... more »
Friendship Oak is a nice place to take photos or to stop and enjoy your lunch. For professional photos please request approval thru the campus office.
We were here before Katrina and now seen it again today...Nice to see it made it,has a few spots of damage but is still amazing!
My daughter's college - University Southern Miss, Gulfport!! Fantastic &impressive old tree on the campus ! Wow, if only it could talk !
Impressive tree! 500 years old.
Visited in July. Unfortunately, the tree was damaged.
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