The amazing story of a girl who lived in a redwood tree for 738 days

Wednesday, 07/06/2023, 09:53 (GMT+7)

Julia "Butterfly" Hill lived in a tree for over two years, which has been one of the most inspiring stories among activists and supporters. Read more!

Julia "Butterfly" Hill gained worldwide recognition for her extraordinary 738-day tree residency as an act of environmental activism.  

How did this incredible story begin? 

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Image Credit: The Earthly Mission

At the age of 23, she took up residence in a magnificent redwood tree named "Luna" in California's Redwood Forest. Her courageous tree-sit began on December 10, 1997, and continued until December 23, 1999.

Motivated by the threat of a new clear-cutting initiative by the Pacific Lumber Company, Hill embarked on this daring endeavour to protect the forest's trees. 

Clear-cutting, a powerful logging method, posed a significant danger to the forest's natural balance and essential services.

Hill's story continues to inspire as she remains an active environmentalist and author. Her memoir, "The Legacy of Luna: The Story of a Tree, a Woman, and the Struggle to Save the Redwoods," published in 2000, beautifully chronicles her profound experience of living in the tree.

Hill’s passion for the environment makes her a great activist

From her childhood, Hill felt a sense of not belonging, often moving due to her father's occupation as a travelling preacher. A serendipitous encounter with a butterfly at the age of 7 earned her the nickname "Butterfly," a name she embraced throughout her life. 

Hill's passion for environmental activism was further fueled by a life-altering car accident in her early twenties, leading her to reevaluate her purpose and commit herself to the cause.

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Image Credit: Insider

After discovering a deep connection to the majestic redwood trees during a road trip, Hill found an opportunity to participate in a tree sit sponsored by Earth First! 

This initiative involved living in the ancient redwood tree named "Luna" alongside two other individuals. Despite facing numerous challenges, including illness and intimidation tactics from the Pacific Lumber Company, Hill persisted in her mission.

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Hill’s story of living in the Redwood tree for 738 days was sensational

Her 738-day residency atop Luna captured significant media attention, leading to an agreement with the Pacific Lumber Company to protect the tree and its surrounding radius. 

However, the company retained ownership of the already-felled trees. Hill descended from Luna, concluding her remarkable tree sit, and in 2007, the Pacific Lumber Company filed for bankruptcy.

During her time in Luna, Hill established the organization Circle of Life, dedicated to educating people about living in an environmentally conscious manner. 

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Image Credit: The Earthly Mission

The organization organized speaking tours and eco-friendly events and funded grassroots projects for environmental preservation.

Julia "Butterfly" Hill's unwavering commitment to environmental causes reflects her belief in creating a more peaceful, healthy, and sustainable world. Her story of resilience and activism continues to inspire individuals worldwide.

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Image Credit: The Earthly Mission

In 2000, a documentary titled "Butterfly" portrayed Hill's tree residency and garnered positive ratings. The same year, she published her memoir, "The Legacy of Luna," providing a profound account of her time living in the tree.

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It has been one of the most inspiring stories to take action on environmental protection. Things we can do might not be as mind-blowing as Hill. Yet, a significant achievement always starts with small steps. 

That is why it is never too late to do anything for our environment!