Autumn in the North Cemetery.

Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?

These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.

Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...

...seems to be working so far

Saturday, December 1, 2007

About That Dump We Bought...

On a recent post I wrote of the recently acquired land south of the Quinebaug River that stretches from Stallion Hill Road to Holland Road. In it I referred to there being a dump on the land, and my concern for it's clean up now that we own it. Well, today I am posting some photos of the land. Now, please understand, not all the land is a "dump", but the land that is tainted will certainly have to be addressed. The cost of such a remediation will be a lot, but not impossible. The Town made a very good decision to purchase the tract. It is beautiful.

Old appliances dumped on the road coming in from Stallion Hill Road.

TOP: Glass and stoneware shards litter the ground. SECOND: Countless old items poke through the leaves.
THIRD: Tin and porcelain items on the surface. BOTTOM: Abandoned equipment.


  1. Dear Thinking: Yes, well, in my experience, very rarely can parcels be purchased where there isn't a modern or historic dump on it. Fact is, there's probably more you can't see underground. Once, as a kid, I tripped over an ancient wine flask (which now graces my mantle), and when further investigation was done, there was more trash, and it was once somebody's dump site from the mid-1800's. Nearby is the old foundation too.

    This is not to say that the dump photos you take are historic; they're not. That is just someone who shirked their responsibilities and dumped their unwanted stuff on someone else's property.

    Volunteers will clean that up; it's already being planned. In fall, that hillside just purchased is visible from the end of Route 148. As you sit there at the intersection with Route 20 and look straight ahead in the fall, think about the intermittent streams that trickle down to the river from the top of that hill. In better weather, you will be able to visit it and take photos for this page. Also, you will find remnants of the bridge that once spanned the Quinebaug River there -the stonework is just gorgeous, massive boulders cut to fit, some with metal pipes still sticking out of them which had some purpose when it was planned to be a railroad. Stones laid in a curved pattern in one section almost like a veranda, some are toppled over at the river's edge. Quite impressive and historic. NICE tourist spot.

    The rusty old stuff on the ground isn't even a speck in the bigger picture.

  2. Carol,

    Boy, do I know about stuff buried around here!!! But, I was surprised at the amount of things on the ground, and in the ground on the other side of the river. It covered a very big area. I also thought that, "Well, this is what I can see. What about what I cannot see? And what about the liquids that may have been dumped there as well?

    I hope once soil testing is done it will be safe enough for volunteers to clean up.

    Thank you for telling me about the old bridge!!! Now we have somewhere to trek come spring!!

    You will have to give me specific directions on where it is from Holland Road.

    And you are right, this all great tourist stuff.

    Last year, we walked along the river from a road we found off Holland Road, and towards the mill. We never made it as far as the mill, but the rivers edge was amazing. Large rocks, and huge pines hanging over the water. It was if I was somewhere in northern Maine!


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