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Local Fishing Hole Named to Honor Senator Wetmore

Posted Monday, February 1, 2016
— News

To honor Senator Robert Wetmore’s passion for the outdoors and resolute support for land conservation and stewardship, Mount Grace has established The Senator Robert D. Wetmore, Sr. Memorial Fishing Hole, in collaboration with the Wetmore and Gifford families. 

The Memorial Fishing Hole is located within Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust’s 33-acre Gifford Memorial Forest, on Tully Road in Orange.   

Nearly a half-mile stretch of the West Branch of the Tully River flows through Gifford Memorial Forest. Cart roads and an unmarked fishing trail along the riverbank provide a scenic wilderness loop trail for anglers and others.

The Senator Robert D. Wetmore, Sr. Memorial Fishing Hole sits at the northern property line where a magnificent, 200-foot long former mill dam has helped create a diverse floodplain forest with oxbows and numerous deep vernal pools. The river is a high-quality cold water fishery.

Senator Wetmore – Conservationist, Sportsman, and Land Steward

In 1970, Wetmore proposed adding Article 97 to the Amendments to the Massachusetts Constitution, which established that the status of public conservation land cannot simply be undone by an administrative decision, but requires that the House and Senate must each agree with such a decision by a 2/3 supermajority roll call vote.

In 1987, at the dedication of Mount Grace’s first conservation project, the Lawton State Forest, in Athol, Senator Wetmore attributed the success of the project to fact that the business community understood the need to preserve natural areas and backed the project.

In 1998, as Executor of his Uncle Roy and Aunt Marjorie’s estate, Senator Wetmore saw to it that most of their land was conserved with the assistance of Mount Grace, leading to the establishment of MassWildlife’s Tully Mountain Wildlife Management Area that now protects the entire mountain and 1,200 acres around it.

In 2002, the Gifford family protected their land as part of the Tully Initiative, a two-year partnership of Mount Grace, local landowners, and the State, which protected 9,000+ acres and was inspired by the celebration of the conservation of other Wetmore family land.

In 2014, Senator Wetmore was named Conservator of the Region by Mount Grace at our 28th Annual Meeting held at The Farm School in Orange.

It is a tremendous honor for Mount Grace to be chosen to receive memorial gifts in Senator Wetmore’s name. Mount Grace thanks the Senator, and the Wetmore Family, for this decision.

Gifts made in memory of Senator Wetmore will establish the Senator Robert D. Wetmore, Sr. Memorial Fishing Hole and help build the Senator Wetmore Land Stewardship Endowment to provide for the care of the land. Senator Wetmore's poem "Going Fishing" can be downloaded at the bottom of the page.

If you would like to make a gift in memory of Senator Wetmore, you may use the Mount Grace Giving Page, and add the words "in memory of Senator Wetmore" in the comment field.

To honor Senator Robert Wetmore’s passion for the outdoors and support for land conservation, Mount Grace is establishing The Senator Robert D. Wetmore, Sr. Memorial Fishing Hole on the Tully River.