Talk:Winter storm fells US President George Washington's tree at Mount Vernon estate, Virginia

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Reader knowledge[edit]

Seems to me the lede fails to clearly explain, up front, a lot of basic information — like what a Nor'easter is and what Mount Vernon is (those two come immediately to mind). --Pi zero (talk) 05:26, 6 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Review of revision 4388420 [Not ready][edit]

I don't think we need to have a big length article. It is more of an obituary then an article, which surprised me no one did anything for Billy Graham's death. Referring to the storm in the terms of the "American north-east" and wind gust should be sufficient. The "what is a Nor'easter?" The technical definition is a weak hurricane in winter which only impacts the American north-east - since we talk a bit funny in that part of the US "north-east storm" became "nor-easter". As for locating the property in Virginia, it should be okay now. Short simple and concise. AZOperator (talk) 22:11, 6 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

@AZOperator:, you've added some historical details about George Clinton. Now, many would consider it common knowledge but being sticklers for sources, I didn't see these facts mentioned in your listed sources. Sadly, we can't just say "look at Wikipedia for this" since WP is not considered a reliable source. Side note: I saw you said "we talk a bit funny in that part of the US" ... I thought you operated out of Arizona. Cheers, --SVTCobra 23:59, 6 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]
Please stop capitalizing plant/tree names. It is simply not proper. It is "apple tree" not "Apple Tree" and it is a "maple" not "Maple", etc., etc. --SVTCobra 00:03, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Okay, remember I am an engineer not a writer. Yes, I do operate out of AZ but like most of us out here we come from somewhere else. Interestingly, I grew up in the hometown of President James Buchannan. I think a blanket acknowledgement to the US Department of Interior where all of my historical tidbits came from that site is sufficient. AZOperator (talk) 00:09, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

You grew up in Cove Gap?!? Hardly anyone lives there. Anyway, I went to university along Route 30 with which you must be familiar. My paternal grandparents retired in Green Valley, AZ. --SVTCobra 00:26, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Actually, I should have stated he took up residence in the city of Lancaster until his death - which is where I grew up. When I get into that area I am an oddball. An engineer with fingers in technology maturing 8-10 years from now. The Amish are really skeptical of me. There is a lot of good stories there. As for your grandparents, we have a beloved term for them, "Snowbirds". AZOperator (talk) 02:14, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Well, my grandparents weren't true snowbirds. I mean, snowbirds is what we up here in the Northeast call retired people who flee to Florida or Arizona for the winter months. My grandparents moved to AZ permanently. It actually became the longest they ever lived in any city (or state) in their entire lives. In grandma's case it ended up being 40 years (she outlived grandpa). How, you may wonder, well she lived to 101 years of age. Cheers, --SVTCobra 02:41, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]
Well your grandparents had good taste living out here. I love and make my family still in the northeast jealous about the weather. I should say if your grandmother lived to 101, you got some good genes hidden in your genome. Phoenix, mainly out of suburb Scottsdale, has a lot of genome testing labs like TGen. ASU and those companies have joined up and have some significant advances since Watson and Crick. AZOperator (talk) 15:15, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]


How would people feel if I changed the title to "Winter storm fells George Washington's tree in Virginia, USA" or something similar. I know what a Nor'easter is, but I don't feel it's widely known (and we introduce it in the article). Also, "Washington's tree" might confuse people to think it is about a symbolic tree for the city or state named after George. Cheers, --SVTCobra 00:37, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Okay by me; I'd been wondering what to do about the headline. --Pi zero (talk) 00:39, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]
Alright, I did it. I think we have a pretty solid candidate for review at this point. --SVTCobra 00:59, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

The Canadian Hemlock is also state tree of PA. Seems like those Canadians have infiltrated the PA state legislature. :) AZOperator (talk) 02:18, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Well, the Keystone State probably calls it the eastern hemlock, so as to give the Canucks less influence ;-) --SVTCobra 02:34, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Which tree is this on the photo?[edit]

--Gryllida (talk) 02:52, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

I don't know. When I added the photo, I asked if anyone could identify it, please put it in the caption. --SVTCobra 03:18, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Looking again at the source photos, it may have been a bit too far away to have been in the file photo, but tall enough to have hit the tomb if it had fallen at a different angle. Cheers, --SVTCobra 03:22, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]
Well, I say that. But it could be the tall one in the left half of the photo (just right of the column) behind the tomb itself. However, I just don't know for sure. --SVTCobra 03:27, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

The actual tree from what I can see from the ground photos (not public domain) is the tree on the right. You can only see a few twigs of it from the article photo. It appears to have fallen parallel to the actual tomb. The only true damage to the tomb was the iron fence around the outside of the tomb.

The tomb itself is insanely strong. Turns out there are two tombs at Mount Vernon. The legend goes a fired gardener wanted to take Washington's skull but decapitated the father-in-law of Washington's nephew corpse. Therefore Washington and his wife were placed in lead boxes (common for high profile individuals) and then lowered into the current marble crypt. Before sealing the lead boxes, a Washington blood relative asked for the coffin to be opened to verify the president's body was still there (remember there were multiple attempts at taking Lincoln's corpse). AZOperator (talk) 15:37, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Review of revision 4388563 [Not ready][edit]

Okay, I think I have a way of freshening this up a bit, but you are going to have to cut me a little leeway. AZOperator (talk) 15:42, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

@AZOperator: What do you have in mind? (Really hoping it's something that'll be no problem.) --Pi zero (talk) 16:16, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

@Pi zero: Well they had since cleaned it up but could only find one source saying something close to what the future is. The title and the lede needed to be modified to compensate for that. AZOperator (talk) 17:03, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

@AZOperator: I'm taking a look now, to see whether we can finesse this trick, and if so, how best to go about it. --Pi zero (talk) 18:37, 7 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Review of revision 4388653 [Passed][edit]

Verifiability (2)[edit]

[...] 227-year-old tree guarding the first US President George Washington's Mount Vernon tomb, located in Virginia. Is this correct? Quote: Today at Mount Vernon, strong winds brought down a 227-year-old Canadian Hemlock, as well as a Virginia Cedar that stood watch over Washington’s tomb for many years, [1] De Wikischim (talk) 10:04, 8 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Good question. --Pi zero (talk) 12:00, 8 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]
No, I believe the hemlock is not at the tomb. None of the cited sources mention the tomb, other than that passage; the VOA article does not mention the tomb at all; and I find an article not cited here,
clearly stating the hemlock was on the northern serpentine. A map of the estate shows the tomb is not in the vicinity of the gardens.

Thank you, De Wikischim; good catch. --Pi zero (talk) 12:28, 8 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

The VOA article also confirms this with this sentence "The tree, a Canadian hemlock, was planted near the entrance to a garden on the property." So not right by the tomb. Photos there also show the broken tree near the outer fence. Cheers, --SVTCobra 12:34, 8 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]
I changed the photo to one of the main estate, since the article no longer mentions the tomb. Cheers, --SVTCobra 12:51, 8 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

And this is why I wanted the article to have a laser focus on the 227 year old tree, falling and future. Obituary, nothing more nothing less. I appreciate @De Wikischim: for catching that glaring mistake. I hereby unofficially name you "heads up editor of the week". Don't let it go to your head. AZOperator (talk) 15:44, 8 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Face-smile.svg De Wikischim (talk) 16:07, 8 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]
@AZOperator: Nevertheless, you had included the bit about about the tree guarding the tomb from the very first draft. Cheers, --SVTCobra 17:17, 8 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

@SVTCobra: and was a draft. Instead of checking it, I was more concerned with defining a Nor'Easter. Multiple individuals worked on this, they could have changed that, so if this some type of blame assignment - don't, it is counterproductive. De Wikischim caught it late in the game but should be thanked. AZOperator (talk) 19:54, 8 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Yes, De Wikischim should be thanked. But the way your comment reads makes it seem like you had nothing to do with it and pesky other editors are to blame. That's why I felt the need to reply. Cheers, --SVTCobra 20:35, 8 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

If it will make you sleep better at night, yes I did write that part. I am sorry. Now I will go cry in a corner someplace! AZOperator (talk) 23:10, 8 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]

I reviewed the article. So in addition to anyone else feeling bad about the error, I get to feel bad about not catching it. The one bright patch in all this is that De Wikischim not only caught it, but caught it before the 24-hour deadline so we were able to fix it in place rather than issuing a {{correction}}. --Pi zero (talk) 09:28, 9 March 2018 (UTC)[reply]