Where in the World is the Cypress man? - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Where in the World is the Cypress man?

^ Fred Moore ^ Fred Moore

January 31, 2003

So there I was bombing down the road when suddenly it appeared, a 14-foot high cypress stump. People were pulling off, taking pictures, and there's Fred Moore.

Five years ago, Fred found this lightning-struck tree and dragged it home. Of course everyone in the county wanted to know why. Fred hired a chainsaw artist to carve up the trunk. This is how the artist came up with the image.

"He laughed and then pulled his hands away and said I have the image in my head."

And now the 250-year-old man guards the front yard. At 80, Fred is not interested in counting the rings, so the age is an estimate. The tree's age, not Fred's. Meanwhile, the artist came on Mondays to work.

"It was his religious belief to only work on Mondays."

But every other day, people called the sheriff. They just had to know what the carving was going to be.

"I told them for their safety I was not going to tell them or they wouldn't live much longer," said the sheriff.

You see, the artist covered the statue when he wasn't attacking it with the chainsaw.

"What is happening at the big cypress stump?" everyone would ask. And now that it is done, there is still some question about who the man is. But there are clues if you look close.

The lumberjack is a Republican, he wears a big hat, and the initials FM are on the belt buckle. It seems the artist's secret image turned into none other than retired logger Fred Moore himself.

Now the people of Vienna and Dooly county can finally leave the sheriff alone. The tree came from the Indian trail that connected the Flint River with Hawkinsville. Fred the cypress can be seen on Georgia Highway 27, just west of Vienna.

posted at 10:00AM by kentw@walb.com

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