Leatham Conservation Easement
Year Protected: 2007
Land Protected: 6 acres
Shoreline Protected: 319 feet
Public Benefits: Forest, high-bank shoreline
A quiet stretch of high-bank shoreline along Lopez Island’s western shoreline was protected thanks to the generosity of the late Evelyn J. Leatham. A long-term islander and conservationist, Evelyn wanted to be certain her property would remain conserved, and made the decision to leave her property—house included—to the Preservation Trust as a bequest in her will.
Upon receipt of this generous planned gift, the SJPT placed a conservation easement on just over six acres of native mixed forest, which included 319 feet of shoreline. A maximum of one single family house is allowed on the property, and no other subdivision is allowed. After placing these permanent development restrictions on the property, the Trust sold the conserved land with its existing house and used the proceeds as the seed money for the successful Watmough Bight Campaign.
“Evelyn was an amazing woman with a deep passion for the San Juans and our wildlife,” said Barbara Estenson, a longtime friend. “In addition to conserving her own land, which she loved, Evelyn would be thrilled to know that her bequest went on to fund the preservation of more wildlife habitat in the islands.”