Mary Grant Nature Preserve
Protected for Generations to come with an Easement
Held by the Three Rivers Land Trust
The Mary Grant Nature Preserve is a 13-acre parcel of land, located on the Sam Page Road in Acton. The late Mary Grant donated it to the Town of Acton in 2004 with a conservation easement held by the Three River’s Land Trust. The property had been in the family since 1905 and used as a summer home. In 1971, Mary’s mother and father (Rebecca and Dr. George Grant) conveyed the property to Mary. Mary never married and continued her visits to her summer home in Acton over the years. Mary passed away in 2003 and her wishes were that the property never be developed. Mary’s will originally bequeathed the property to the Maine Coast Heritage Trust, located in Topsham, ME. Working with the Three Rivers Land Trust and the Town Of Acton, it was determined that the best way to meet Mary’s wishes, would be to transfer the title of the property to the Town of Acton with a conservation easement held by the Three Rivers Land Trust. The Board of Selectmen agreed to put an article in the next Town Meeting. At the Annual Town Meeting held on June 4, 2004, it was voted to accept the property with the conservation easement. In August of 2004, the property was transferred to the Town of Acton.
In January of 2005, The “Mary Grant Committee was formed to transform the old farmstead into a Town Park, later to be designated as the “Mary Grant Nature Preserve”, with walking trails and picnic tables for the citizens of Acton to enjoy. The farmhouse, which had deteriorated over the years, had to be torn down and properly disposed of. The committee accepted the challenge of doing all this work without the use of any “Tax Dollars”. An auction/cookout was held on July 30, 2005 and the committee was able to raise $1969.65. Many conservation minded citizens in Acton and local Financial Institutions in the area, donated generously to the project, allowing us to raise a total of $6597.07, so far, to help us in achieving our goal. Many citizens and area businesses have been very generous in donating in-kind services and materials to help us keep our expenses to a minimum. Our expenses, so far, are $3723.53, leaving a balance of $2873.54 for future expenses and maintenance of the project.
On September 29, 2007, the Mary Grant Nature Preserve was dedicated in the memory of Mary Grant. Two major walking trails are now open to the public. While the project has come a long way in the past three and a half years, there are a number of things that the committee intends to do to enhance the overall project. These include providing plant/tree identification, providing potable water, reconditioning the outhouse, expansion of the walking trails and possibly transforming the garage into a Nature Learning Center.
If you are interested in contributing to our effort, please make checks out to the Town of Acton c/o “Mary Grant Fund”. Checks may be forwarded to the Selectman’s Office, 35 H Road, Acton, Maine.