Gift preserves 56 acres of forest and wetland habitat in Jaffrey

  • The Sholl family has donated 56-acre property in Jaffrey, which includes wetlands and a drift aquifer, to the Monadnock Conservancy. PHOTO BY CHRIS MORRISON—

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Published: 2/1/2023 11:06:12 AM

The Monadnock Conservancy has received a gift of a 56-acre property on Sanders Road in northeast Jaffrey, preserving important forest and wetland habitat.

The property, located near the Dublin and Peterborough town lines, belonged to the Sholl family. It included 16 acres of wetlands and is over a stratified drift aquifer, an important groundwater resource. Stratified drift aquifers consist of sand and gravel deposits left by retreating glacial ice.

The donation was made by the family of longtime Monadnock region residents Nancy and Calvin Sholl. Nancy died in 2020, and Calvin in 2021, and the land was gifted to the conservancy by their children to honor the couple’s dedication to the natural beauty of the Monadnock region.

“Thanks to the generosity of the Sholl family, we are thrilled to add this property to the more than 23,000 acres we have protected across the Monadnock region,” said Monadnock Conservancy Executive Director Ryan Owens. “The land is especially important for wildlife habitat and local drinking water supplies, and we are honored to steward it for the benefit of current and future residents of Jaffrey and the region.”

The Monadnock Conservancy was founded in 1989, and is a land trust dedicated to preserving land in the Monadnock region, serving a total of 40 towns. Based in Keene, the organization has protected a total of 23,000 acres of forest, farmland, shoreline, wetlands and wildlife habitat.

The property donated by the Sholls includes above-ground water resources, with more than 2,400 feet of streams. It’s also contiguous with 941 acres of already conserved land to the east, expanding the protected area. Monadnock Conservancy Land Protection Director Anne McBride said it is part of a much-larger wetland complex that spans both Jaffrey and Dublin, and drains into Contoocook River.

“It just makes sense in terms of connection of conservation land. It seemed like a no-brainer to us,” McBride said. “We’re excited to be the new stewards of this property.”

The Sholls, who moved to the region in the 1970s, didn’t develop the property, but visited it to observe the wildlife there, including water birds and beaver.

“There’s a ton of wildlife out there,” McBride said.

McBride said the aquifer under the property has not been tapped as a municipal water source, but preserving the land protects that potential resource.

There are not any trails on the property, parts of which are not accessible by foot due to the wetlands, but the property is open to the public for bird- or wildlife-watching, McBride said, though there is no parking or clear property entrance.

For information about the Monadnock Conservancy, visit or call 603-357-0600.

Ashley Saari can be reached at 603-924-7172, Ext. 244 or She’s on Twitter @AshleySaariMLT.

Sign up for Monadnock Ledger-Transcript Newsletters
Monadnock Ledger-Transcript Headline Alerts
Monadnock Ledger-Transcript MLT Minute North
Monadnock Ledger-Transcript MLT Minute South
Monadnock Ledger-Transcript Real Estate & Transactions
Monadnock Ledger-Transcript Contests and Promotions
Monadnock Ledger-Transcript Dining & Entertainment
Monadnock Ledger-Transcript Sports


Support Local Journalism

Subscribe to the Monadnock Ledger-Transcript, your source for Peterborough area news.

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript

20 Grove St.
Peterborough, NH 03458


© 2021 Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy