Historic Tree Sculpture for Edgewood College, Madison, Wisconsin.
Record of a work in progress.

MARCH 2006
Sometime in the early 19th century, a squirrel buried a Burr Oak acorn next to an eagle-shaped mound, an earth work created by the "ancient ones".  The squirrel forgot about the acorn and the tree took root next to the eagle mound not far from a small duck-filled lake in an area known always to the Ho Chunk people as Dejope, which means four lakes in their language.

Sculptor Harry Whitehorse and Edgewood College Student Carly Garfield look over the tree on March 2, 2006.

Edgewood College's oldest tree, March 2, 2006.

The Burr Oak slowly grew in a quiet natural rhythm, silently witnessing the contacts between the Ho Chunk people and the American settlers. One of these early settlers was a Dominican Missionary named Father Samuel Mazzuchelli who is considered to be the founder of Madison, Wisconsin's Edgewood College, home of the Eagle-Mound Burr Oak.

In 2006, the Eagle-Mound Burr-Oak, which was the oldest tree on the Edgewood campus, had to be removed because of root rot. Students and staff at Edgewood asked Harry Whitehorse to create a sculpture the tree that will honor the history, present, and future of Dejope's indigenous people, the HoChunk.

Harry has chosen to create an eagle from the tree and it will be installed at the Edgewood College Library. Please scroll down to see the record of this work in progress.


MARCH 24, 2006

Harry and Tim Andrew, landscape and grounds coordinator for Edgewood College, look over the
remains of the Burr Oak.

Harry chooses the wood.

Later that day, Harry gets ready to create a sculpture.

APRIL 27, 2006

Because wood has a tendency to split, warp, and crack, Harry tries to coax the wood into complacency by hollowing out the sculpture and reinforcing it with fiberglass. This half of the eagle is ready for the hollowing out process.

Can you see the basic form of the eagle?

Making sawdust and woodchips.

MAY 7, 2006

The eagle is taking shape.

NOVEMBER 4, 2006
Harry has attached the eagle to the base and started the detailing process.


All Artwork & Images On This Website Are Subject To Copyright Laws        Harry Whitehorse