PDLT Conserves Generations of Timberland
On December 27, 2018, Pee Dee Land Trust (PDLT) finalized a conservation easement agreement with Catherine Rogers on two of her properties in Marlboro County totaling 155 acres. The English Place and Townsend Place are portions of family land which Mrs. Rogers inherited and now uses primarily for timber production. The conservation easements protect 132 acres of soils that are important for agricultural and timber production in addition to wildlife habitat present in the managed pine woods and small-stream hardwood forests.
Catherine Rogers offered her thoughts on the property and reason for protecting the land, “In the late 1700’s some of my ancestors landed by boat near Wilmington, North Carolina, and were directed by a sign which stated that the best farmland could be found 100 miles up the Cape Fear River. They made their way to parts of Marlboro and Dillon counties where they built their homes using the abundant old growth pine trees and made a livelihood farming the land. At that time wolves roamed the countryside in such numbers that the farmers had to house their sheep indoors for protection at night. We cannot imagine that world today as our environment has changed. But in our 21st century, we are still surrounded with our area’s best resources - our beautiful countryside, farm and timberland, rivers, ponds and numerous wildlife. In time it will grow more precious to us especially if we care to protect it now. By planning to prevent any adverse changes that could negatively alter its beauty or use, we leave a precious commodity for the generations that follow. With my decision of placing the land that I inherited from my ancestors in a Conservation Easement with Pee Dee Land Trust, I hope to encourage other land owners in the Pee Dee Watershed to join me.”
The English Place and Townsend Place are part of a larger network of protected farm and forest lands that ensure habitat connectivity and open space. The protection of these properties will further conservation and protect migratory corridors for wildlife in support of regional and national bird conservation efforts, in particularly those for quail and waterbirds. With the addition of these two properties, PDL proudly partners with private landowners on thirteen conservation easements totaling 5,665 acres across Marlboro County.
“Working forest lands are a critical part of this region’s economy and cultural heritage. Protecting land while ensuring that it can remain in active forest management has multiple benefits and is at the heart of our work,” stated PDLT Director of Land Protection, Seth Cook. “It was intriguing to learn about Catherine’s family’s history and to help plan a portion of her legacy through her conservation easements,” added Cook.
About Pee Dee Land Trust
Pee Dee Land Trust focuses on the Pee Dee watershed, which covers nine+ counties of the Pee Dee region in South Carolina: Chesterfield, Darlington, Dillon, Florence, Georgetown, Horry, Marion, Marlboro, and Williamsburg. Its mission is to protect, and to promote an appreciation of, the significant natural, agricultural, and historical resources of the Pee Dee Region through voluntary land conservation and educational programs. Pee Dee Land Trust has a toolbox full of options to help landowners who are interested in conservation such as accepting donations of land or conservation easements. There are endless options of ways to support PDLT as an individual or as an organization, including annual Membership, event sponsorship, hosting experiences, donations to one of the endowments, land donations and planned estate giving opportunities.
With its 74th conservation project to date, Pee Dee Land Trust has now protected over 28,700 acres in the Pee Dee Region. While remaining in private ownership, the lands protected through conservation easements held by PDLT ensure that special places will be available for farming, forestry, and recreation for future generations. Through the use of permanent agreements, PDLT and landowners work as partners to ensure that land use activities on private property are limited in order to preserve key conservation values which benefit the public. These values include open space such as rural scenic views along roads and rivers, habitat for wildlife including game and non-game species, and the protection of farm and forest land to ensure it remains in farming and forestry rather than being converted to other uses.
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