Preserving the Character of York County

For years we contemplated placing an easement to permanently preserve our property. But each time we discussed the option, we faced too many difficult decisions.

“Permanent” is a long time. Many choices can come along well beyond our lifetimes: our children might want to build another home on the property or reap the benefits of subdividing and selling. Beyond family issues and lost income potential, a more pressing concern is the impact our decision would have on adjacent property owners.

Our land is situated minutes from a major interstate and surrounded by several thousand acres of potentially developable land. Ultimately we could become a tiny island of preserved property surrounded by residential communities, in conflict with everything we sought to accomplish. This issue was the most difficult for us to overcome.

Because of these challenges, we decided at the time to set aside the idea of preservation. Coincidentally, it was during this time, John was asked to serve on the Board of Directors for the Farm & Natural Lands Trust of York County. Board President Jack Shorb presented a new conservation strategy: contact landowners of surrounding preserved properties and encourage them to preserve their land, thereby creating large areas of farm and natural lands. This strategy blended well with the preservation of our land and a way of life for future generations.

With several contiguous landowners placing easements on their lands, we approached Jackie Kramer and found that we could design an easement to suit our property and our goals as landowners. We decided that the timing was right to protect our property and the part it played in York County’s character.

Today we are very proud of our decision; our land is now a part of over 1,000 acres of preserved contiguous lands and the Farm & Natural Lands Trust will continue to build upon this block of preserved land.

We know that 100 years from now future owners of our property will look out over these preserved lands and see the same landscape and feel the same pride we do today.


by John & Susan Linton

Farm & Natural Lands Trust of York County

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