Home to Us

Six Stories of Saving the Land

  • Author(s): Willse, Varina
  • Series:
  • Imprint: Univ Tennessee Press
  • Publication Date: 2013-02-28
  • Status: Active
  • Available in Hardcover - Cloth: Price $35.00 | Buy Now

The Land Trust for Tennessee set out in 1999, in the words of its mission statement, “to preserve the unique character of Tennessee’s natural and historic landscapes and sites for future generations.” In 2012, near the end of its fourteenth year, the Nashville-based non-profit organization had completed more than two hundred individually-crafted legal agreements with property owners in fifty-plus Tennessee counties, assuring that their designated tracts of land – about 75,000 acres in all – will be safeguarded forever. These family farms, native forests, mountains, waterways and historic sites, which together bolster the state’s image as one of the greenest and most picturesque in the nation, will be perpetually sustained for the pleasure and benefit of all.

To explain how these diverse conservation covenants work is a complex task, since each separate case is its own story, with its own narrative and cast of characters. Recognizing these challenges, The Land Trust decided to select a few “typical” partner-families and present their stories in singular detail through the pictures of photo-documentation Nancy Rhoda and the carefully crafted verbal profiles of writer Varina Willse.

Home to Us: Six Stories of Saving the Land invites us onto the ground and into the lives of the Crunks, the Neals, the Fishers, the Pierces, the Knights and the Ozburns – Tennesseans who have set aside their property to be preserved as a legacy to the future. Home to Us goes to the heart and soul of a universally recognized bond that connects all people to the places they call home.