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Book Launch: Twenty-One Trees & Hand Hewn

  • Mountain Top Arboretum 4 Maude Adams Road Tannersville, NY, 12485 United States (map)

Join us for the launch of two new outstanding books:  Hand Hewn by Jack Sobon, the architect of the Arboretum’s Education Center, which explores the craft and artistry of timber frame building construction, and Twenty-One Trees, which connects the tree species used in the Arboretum’s Education Center to their appearance in the Arboretum forest in all seasons through the photography of Rob Cardillo.  There will be presentations on each book and a short documentary film on the creation of the Arboretum’s building.  The presentations will be followed by a reception and both authors will be available to sign books purchased at this event.


Twenty-One Trees details through exquisite photographs by Rob Cardillo each of the twenty-one tree species used in the construction of the Mountain Top Arboretum’s new timber frame Education Center designed by noted architect Jack Sobon. Every tree, its bark and leaves are visually explored as they change throughout the seasons. This book will allow visitors to the Arboretum to better appreciate and come to know the beauty and time that continues to influence the ecology of the Arboretum long before and after one’s visit.

Hand Hewn by Jack Sobon is a celebration of the traditions and artistry of timber-frame building, a 7,000-year-old craft that holds an enduring attraction for its simple elegance, resilience, and the warmth of the wood. Internationally renowned timber-frame architect and craftsman Jack A. Sobon offers a fascinating look at how the natural, organic forms of trees become the framework for a home, with profiles of the classic tools he uses to hand hew and shape each timber and explanations of the clever engineering of the wooden joinery connecting the timbers, without a single nail. Inspiring photos of Sobon’s original interior home designs, as well as historical examples of long-lived structures in Europe and North America, make this a compelling tribute to the lasting value of artisanal craftsmanship and a thoughtful, deliberate approach to designing buildings.

Jack A. Sobon is an architect and builder specializing in timber-framed buildings. A founding director of the Timber Framer’s Guild of North America and founder of the Traditional Timber Frame Research and Advisory Group, Sobon has devoted his 38-year career to understanding the craft of timber framing. Using only traditional hand tools, he has framed and erected over 50 structures. He is the author of Build a Classic Timber Frame Home and coauthor of Timber Frame Construction. A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, Sobon teaches and consults nationally on traditional building structures and timber-framing techniques.

Earlier Event: October 5
Native Tree ID Walk
Later Event: October 19
Guided Mushroom Walk