Sycamore Stump.
So large it cannot be completely seen in one photo, the Stump dwarfs its neighbor, the World's Largest Steer.

World's Largest Sycamore Stump

Field review by the editors.

Kokomo, Indiana

A giant sycamore tree once stood several miles west of Kokomo. It was centuries old -- no one knew how many -- when it was felled by a storm, leaving a hollow stump over 57 feet around, 18 feet wide, and 12 feet high.

World's Largest Sycamore Stump.

Jacob Bergman, commissioner of Kokomo's city park, liked the stump. He thought it would make a worthy attraction for Kokomo's park, "an artifact of Kokomo's pioneer days" he said at the time. Jacob paid a guy with a big tractor $300 to haul the stump to the park. The trek began and ended on a Sunday morning, June 18, 1916.

Reporters wrote that the stump would stand at the highest point in the park, with a doorway cut into its side and a spiral staircase built inside, leading to a roofed observation deck. That never happened. Instead, the stump sat around outdoors for years, slowly assaulted by park visitors who carved their names into it.

In 1938 Kokomo had the National Youth Administration built an open air shelter around the stump. The shelter was eventually screened, and in 1989 it was glassed into an all-weather pavilion with two added wings, one for a park visitor center, the other to house Kokomo's other mega-attraction, the World's Largest Steer.

Randy Morris, the current park superintendent, told us that the stump was once made into a phone booth (it could hold over two dozen people), but it was removed long ago. The sycamore stump is now just a hollow shell: gnarled, cracked, and eerie. It looks like it could be inhabited by a witch that eats children. Kokomo loves it -- so do we -- because it's the largest of its kind in the world. "I've never heard of any challengers," said Randy.

Believe it or not, the World's Largest Sycamore Stump is not the only famous stump in Indiana.

Also see: The Big Stump | Witness Tree Remembrance Stump

World's Largest Sycamore Stump

Highland Park

Old Ben Drive, Kokomo, IN
Highland Park. From S. Wasington St. turn west at the stoplight onto Defenbaugh St. The road turns to brick as you enter the park. At the stop sign, continue straight, cross the little bridge, then bear right onto dead-end Old Ben Drive. You'll quickly see the wood-and-stone pavilion on the left.
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
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Nearby Offbeat Places

Old Ben, World's Largest SteerOld Ben, World's Largest Steer, Kokomo, IN - < 1 mi.
KokoMantis, 17-Foot-Tall BugKokoMantis, 17-Foot-Tall Bug, Kokomo, IN - 1 mi.
Story Book Express - Fairytale Convenience StoreStory Book Express - Fairytale Convenience Store, Kokomo, IN - 1 mi.
In the region:
Ann Dancing: Electronic Go-Go Dancer, Indianapolis, IN - 48 mi.

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September 18, 2020

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