WFPL takes a cue from film noir. Self-appointed tree detective Erica Peterson looks into the mystery of whether a recently-removed tree on the University of Louisville’s campus was, in fact, more than 300 years old.

And the mystery deepens. Speed Museum spokesman Steven Bowling sent me the following email tonight:

In exploring this further, Greg Gardiner (Director of Operations and Expansion, Speed Art Museum), Larry Owsley (Vice President of Business Affairs at U of L) and Paul E. Cappiello, Ph.D. (Executive Director from Yew Dell Botanical Gardens) met onsite this afternoon and determined that the tree most likely was only about 60 years in age. I have attached images of the tree that were reviewed today and hope that they help clarify the discrepancy. The first image shows the tree in 1974 and the next image is from a much more recent photo. Dr. Parker is reviewing the photos as well.

I hope that this will bring some light to the true age of the tree.

Click here for an update to the story.

Erica Peterson is WFPL's News Director.