Deacon Chadbourne Preserve
Home of the ancient Blackgums! The Deacon Chadbourne Preserve consists of 18 acres of forested upland and forested wetlands in East Fryeburg, Maine on the northerly side of Route 302. The Deacon Chadbourne Preserve is adjacent to several other pieces of conserved land in the area, and, on its western edge, abuts The Nature Conservancy’s 600-acre Mt. Tom Preserve. The name “Deacon Chadbourne” originates from a previous landowner, Joseph Chadbourne, who was a deacon and who sold the property in 1909.
Probably once used as farmland, the property is now split into two main forest types: approximately 5 acres of softwoods and 13 acres of hardwoods. The natural community of the latter is considered a Hemlock-Hardwood Pocket Swamp (State Rank S2), in part because of the presence of native Blackgum (Nyssa sylvatica) trees (Pictured Above), which are an indicator of this community type. According to a diameter-at-breast-height-to-age correlation, some Blackgum trees on the property may be more than 300 years old! USVLT’s Conservation Management Plan for this preserve makes careful note of the importance of both these special trees and the wildlife community as a whole.