Trust announces scenic, 55.7-acre easement

Natural Lands Trust announced that it has protected a scenic 55.7-acre property in London Britain Township, preserving woodlands, rare plant species, and a valued part of the rural landscape.


Sisters Kathryn K. McClure (left) and Patricia Kraus Holt enjoy the fact that their family's homestead is now protected from development.

The property was placed under a conservation easement last month, which means that it remains in private ownership but is protected from future development in perpetuity, said a press release from NLT.

"This beautiful property has been protected forever,” Molly Morrison, president of Natural Lands Trust, said in the release. “Special recognition goes to the Kraus family whose decision to conserve the property is a testament to their foresight and their willingness to contribute to a larger conservation vision for the White Clay Creek watershed."

The Kraus property adjoins 1,800 acres of state parkland in Pennsylvania known as the White Clay Creek Preserve, and 1,752 acres of parkland in Delaware known as White Clay Creek State Park. This makes it especially important as a buffer to these two popular parks.

“To date, 29 percent of the watershed is preserved land,” Shane Morgan, White Clay Watershed Association coordinator, said in the release. “Protecting natural lands is one of the best and least-expensive stormwater controls available because they naturally act as filters, intercepting, slowing, and infiltrating stormwater that carries with it pollutants that would otherwise quickly run off the land directly to the creek.”

“We’re delighted to partner with Natural Lands Trust and the Kraus family to see this project come to fruition,” Aileen Parrish, vice chairman of the board of supervisors for London Britain Township, said in the release.

The easement was donated by the estate of Marjorie P. Kraus. Sisters Patricia Kraus Holt and Kathryn K. McClure generously facilitated the process, ensuring the property’s future as undeveloped land.

“The property was home to my parents, Philip and Marjorie Kraus, and their six children. The farm sustained us with a garden, orchard, and fields to pasture steers, sheep, chickens, and a horse,” sad McClure in the release. “Along with the needed hard work, this setting allowed endless hours of exploration and interaction with nature, and instilled in the entire family a love, curiosity, and appreciation of the natural world.”

The project was made possible by the support of London Britain Township, National Park Service – White Clay Creek National Wild & Scenic River, and the Kraus family, the release said.


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