Gernika has for centuries been the meeting place of the towns of Biscay. Under the Tree, representatives of the towns of Biscay would meet and debate the common problems of the lordship. These meetings were called General Meetings of Biscay and were held until 1876, when the laws governing life in Biscay, that is, the Fueros, were abolished. After a suspension of 102 years, the Meetings were recovered in 1979, thus starting the second stage in the life of this regional institution.
On 7th October 1936, the first Lehendakari, José Antonio Aguirre, was sworn in and his words are inscribed next to the tree. This was also done by Kings and Queens, such as Isabella of Castile in 1483.
The Casa de Juntas and the Tree of Gernika are live symbols of the history of the people.