Man on a Mission

About three years ago VT/NH Chapter Board member, Tom Estill, from Rutland VT had a vision to have American chestnut trees growing at all schools in VT. That was thought to be an ambitious undertaking that would take years to accomplish. Tom does not seem to agree with that assessment. He already has planted, or delivered saplings for planting, to 38 schools. The word about Tom’s ambitious endeavor has spread east across the CT River. Seven of those schools are in NH!

This remarkable outreach activity generates multiple benefits. Especially direct hands-on involvement with young people who will be needed to carry chestnut restoration into the future.

Here is what Tom has to say about his most recent accomplishment:


“Spent the last couple days visiting 11 schools along the upper Connecticut Valley dropping off 3 American Chestnut seedlings for school plantings. My original idea was to limit school visits and seedling donations to VT schools only. But as soon as word got out that I had delivered trees to Vermont schools, NH schools across the river started showing an interest to participate also. And the fact that we are a VT/NH chapter, I thought it was only fair that I made seedlings available to NH schools also. I am now out of seedlings. My focus will now be on getting into schools and giving a presentation of the History and Current Research of the American Chestnut. Every school was very thankful and enthusiastic. They all thought it was a great idea. They were all given a sheet of instructions and short description of the program. So, here are the schools I visited this week:”


* White River Junction, VT

* Richmond School, Hanover, NH

* Cross Academy, Lyme, NH

* Laura Smith Barnes School, Lyme, NH

* Riverdell School, Orford, NH

* Samuel Morey Elementary School, Fairlee, VT

Tom Buzzell, pictured below

* Piermont Village School, Piermont, NH

Kathy Mclure, picture below

* Haverhill Cooperative Middle School, North Haverhill, NH

* Blur Mountain Union School, Newbury, VT

* Woodville High School, Woodville, NH

* Woodville Elementary School, Woodville, NH


Thank you so much Tom, how can we clone you?