History of HLCT



seal at Eel River Woods

In 1972, as the nation was celebrating its third Earth Day, Hingham conservation leaders founded the Hingham Land Conservation Trust. In doing so, they joined a growing local land conservation movement begun by The Trustees of Reservations (TTOR) in 1891. Today there are 143 local land trusts in Massachusetts. HLCT’s early trustees built on Hingham’s growing interest in preserving the beauty and recreational potential of public land. With the completion of the Southeast Expressway in 1960, open land in Hingham became increasingly valuable as resource protection and relief from suburban development. By 1965,Hingham had formed a Conservation Commission and the Friends of Conservation were advocating for increased open space preservation. The pace of public land conservation was picking up, enhanced by town funds, federal government donation of lands, and TTOR’s landmark purchase of World’s End through a public/private partnership. The time had come to enhance conservation options with a private land holding conservation organization with a continuing mission to ensure that land is preserved in perpetuity so that, as Mason Foley wrote in 1935, “though much has been taken, the air of permanence endures” in the hills, meadows and woods of Hingham forever.