The property owners dogs, my brother-in-law and I all stopped for a moment to get a picture taken with the massive stump. A little detective work showed cut wedges out of the side about 8 feet high. This would have been made when the fellers inserted springboards to stand on while they downed the giant by hand with a huge whip saw. By the looks of the woods and surrounding area, the logging occurred about 100 years ago.
The inside of the stump had been burned out but the outside and none of the outsides of any other stumps in the area show effects from a wildfire, so I think that the tree had been burned deliberately to try to dispose of the huge trunk. I could just imagine a slow, smoldering fire burning in the heart of this old stalwart for a year without being able to consume the entire beast. There was still quite a bit of stump left inside even though we could fit 3 people in the burned out cavity easily. The task of burning the stump out was abandoned and a large fir tree has grown inside the marred shell. I figure the new fir to be around 70 years old.
For my niece and nephew-in-law, this property is just the beginning. But for this stretch of land, the history will be something that will be an adventure to learn about perhaps long into the future. Congratulations to this family that will treat the land, trees and wildlife with kindness and respect.