Buttonball Tree

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Buttonball Tree
Sunderland Buttonball 01.JPG
The tree in 2009
Species American sycamore (Platanus occidentalis)
Location North Main St., Sunderland, Massachusetts
Coordinates 42°28′07.83″N 72°34′42.14″W / 42.4688417°N 72.5783722°W / 42.4688417; -72.5783722Coordinates: 42°28′07.83″N 72°34′42.14″W / 42.4688417°N 72.5783722°W / 42.4688417; -72.5783722
Date seeded before 1665

The Buttonball Tree is an exceptionally large American sycamore (Platanus occidentalis) located in Sunderland, Massachusetts.

Though the nickname "buttonball" has been used for all like trees, this tree retained the name, mainly because of its pure size and popularity. The tree is over 113' high, with a girth of 24'7" and a spread of 140'. It is a remnant of Sunderland's forests. Because of their longevity, during the 17th and 18th century sycamores were sometimes planted at the door of new house for newlyweds as "bride and groom" trees. Though the age of the tree is unknown, it is estimated to be well over 350 years old, many estimates say that the tree is closer to 400.[1] The tree is well known and is one of the larger tourist attractions of the town.

The tree is believed to be the largest tree of its kind on the East Coast, or as locals put it, "The widest tree this side of the Mississippi." [2]


There is a plaque set in stone in front of the tree, which was added in 1987, to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the signing of the Constitution, and the tree's age.

Plaque in front of the Buttonball Tree

Picture gallery[edit]

Sunderland Buttonball Tree
Old postcard
Old postcard depicting the Buttonball Tree. 
Tree with two people standing in front
Tree with respect to two young adults. 

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [1], Memorial Hall Digital Collection. Accessed October 13, 2009.
  2. ^ [2], Hayride tour of Historic Sunderland, Massachusetts. Accessed October 13, 2009.