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Soapstone Easement

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Type of Project: Conservation Easement

For nearly 20 years, the nonprofit literary organization Soapstone provided residencies for some 375 women writers at a hand-crafted cabin perched above Soapstone Creek, a tributary of the North Fork Nehalem River. Board members and residents ranged from names you know—Ursula Le Guin, Cheryl Strayed—to lesser known but accomplished writers, for whom a residency at Soapstone was a rare opportunity to focus undisturbed on their writing for a week or more.

In 2010 the board of directors decided to move Soapstone in a different direction. They sold the building and 22 acres of forest that surrounded in fall 2013—but with a conservation easement with NCLC in place, ensuring that regardless who owns the land, it will continue to be stewarded with the same thought and care it had under Soapstone’s ownership.

The folks at North Coast Land Conservancy were absolutely wonderful, and we were delighted that they agreed that it was valuable enough to be worth conserving.

Ruth Gundle, co-founder and former director, Soapstone