On Wednesday, June 22, 2022, the Waterford Foundation Preservation Committee welcomed the community for an informational meeting about the Phillips Farm and other ongoing preservation work on Foundation properties. Attendees gathered at 5:30 pm for a reception and opportunity to view exhibits, maps, and images of the Phillips Farm and properties under easement within the Waterford National Historic Landmark. At 6pm, WF President Susan Manch welcomed those assembled for a information packed presentation by a panel of speakers, including:
- Erika Richardson from the Virginia Outdoors Foundation, who spoke about VOF’s work throughout the Commonwealth and detailed the particular protections of the easement they hold on the Phillips Farm,
- James Remuzzi of Sustainable Solutions, LLC, who gave a report of herbicide treatments applied to date to manage the invasive poison hemlock that presents a threat to Phillips Farm visitors,
- Susan Honig-Rogers of the Phillips Farm Subcommittee, who spoke about the subcommittees current and future efforts to document and manage other invasive plants present on the Phillips Farm,
- Nick Ratcliffe, who educated the audience on the geology and hydrology of the Phillips Farm and explained the present conditions of the South Fork Catoctin Creek as a result of damming the creek to generate power for Waterford’s mills,
- Carl Sheider, who introduced the Phillips Farm Western Trail Pilot Project recently approved by the WF Board of Directors to establish a new walking trail on the western side of Catoctin Creek beginning summer 2022, and
- Stephanie Thompson, Waterford Foundation Executive Director, who provided updates on the status of other preservation work this year including the Mill Stabilization Project, the Bond Street Tanyard easement project, and repair and restoration work throughout WF properties.
We look forward to holding more such community meetings in the future, to keep our neighbors, members, and community members informed of our work. See the presentation slides from the evening for more information on the easement overview, poison hemlock treatment, pilot trail project, and preservation updates. Slides are available online here: Preservation Community Meeting Presentation Slides.