On August 25, 2016, Natural Lands Trust announced the protection of a scenic 55.7 acre property in London Britain Township, Chester County, preserving woodlands, rare plant species, and a valued part of the rural landscape. The property was placed under a conservation easement, so it will be protected in perpetuity from future development.

Photo Credit: Mae Axelrod

        Photo Credit: Mae Axelrod

“The beautiful property has been protected forever,” said Molly Morrison, president of Natural Lands Trust. “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 the White Clay Creek Preserve, 1,800 acres of state parkland in Pennsylvania, and the 1,752 acre White Clay Creek State Park in Delaware. This makes it an especially important buffer zone between the two parks.

“To date, 29 percent of the watershed is preserved land,” said Shane Morgan, White Clay Watershed Association coordinator. “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 pollutants that would otherwise run directly into the creek.”

The easement was donated by the Estate of Marjorie P. Kraus. Sisters Patricia Kraus Holt and Kathryn K. McClure generously facilitated the process.

“The property was home to my parents and their six children,” said Kathryn. “The farm sustained us with a garden, orchard, and fields to pasture animals.  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. My sister and I very much appreciate the diligent and patient work by all the staff of Natural Lands Trust. We also wish to thank London Britain Township for their support.”

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