My grandfather, Joshua A. Cope, in his capacity as Extension Forester at Cornell University, published "Know Your Trees" as a small guide to the identification of common trees in the northeastern United States.  This was first published in December 1927 as a 4-H Handbook and since has gone through 3 revisions and 6 printings.  The most recent revision was in 1998 and was published by Media Services of Cornell University as a bulletin.

December 1927 first printing
January 1929 revised
April 1940 revised
March 1948 revised
November 1951 reprinted
July 1955 reprinted
July 1960 reprinted
February 1964 reprinted
July 1979 reprinted
October 1998 reprinted (with minor revisions by Peter Smallidge, Dept. of Natural Resources, Cornell University)

We are placing here on the Web our most recent version of "Know Your Trees" with the same 50 species and the accompanying keys.  We have brought the nomenclature up to date, and revised and improved the keys.  From this point forward we will continue to modify this work.  We will attempt to keep the work small and simple as that is part of its great popularity and usefulness.  We will try to keep the number of species treated about the same as we add and delete species.  The keys will necessarily have to be changed to meet these needs but brevity and simplicity, without fancy botanical terms, will be the objective.  The descriptions will also be modified, although minimally, as these descriptions as originally written carry very well into the new millenium.

Edward A. Cope

28 November 2000


Forest Appreciation
Using the Bulletin

[introduction] [the keys] [list of 50 trees] [making a tree collection]

[back to the homepage]