"The Sacred Oak, between 300 and 500 years old, is believed to be the largest yellow oak in the U.S. It measures 21.5 feet in circumference, is about 85 feet high, and has a spread of some 120 feet. As a point of reference, compare the size of the lad in the photo to the size of the tree...It has long been said that local Indians met beneath this oak to hold religious ceremonies. Historian Richard. H. Shaner makes the point that this might well have been a 'godhead tree,' one which possesses the power to heal the ill and afflicted. Shaner further observed that 'legends to not have shallow roots, and this was said to be a healing godhead of unusual importance, in part because this mysterious yellow oak is not native to Oley or the entire state of Pennsylvania.' Incidentally, a 3-cornered post with the wording "Sacred Oak of Oleka (Oley)" stands along the road, at the farmhouse, to help locate the site."
(Excerpt and photo courtesy of The Passing Scene, Vol 9 by George M. Meiser, IX and Gloria Jean Meiser. Copyright 1994 by George M. Meiser. Printed by Reading Eagle Press in Reading, PA.)
"Preservation of Sacred Oak is goal of Oley Township Landowner" by Ron Devlin:
"Can you explain the meaning and the story behind the Sacred Oak of Oley Township?" by DarringYouker:
"Lenni Lenape elders have certified that the ancient oak - a yellow oak not native to Pennsylvania - is 489 years old. Theis believes it might be about 700 years old, making it potentially older than the Inca city of Machu Picchu in South America. Whatever its age, the tree has demonstrated remarkable resilience. It has survived vandalism, draughts, lightning strikes and the ravages of time. The Lenni Lenape considered the Sacred Oak a godhead, or healing tree, and held rituals beneath its sturdy branches. In recent years, it has become a mecca for people seeking solace or attempting to connect with nature." (Devlin).
The plaque placed by the tree declares it to be the
largest Yellow Oak in the United States in 1967.
This is my son with the Sacred Oak. Photos
capture the beauty and girth of this tree.