Coastal Land Trust announces acquisition of inholdings at Springer’s Point Preserve

Published 8:40 am Saturday, May 23, 2020

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The Coastal Land Trust has announced the bargain sale donation of almost two acres of private land holdings within its Springer’s Point Preserve on Ocracoke Island from Ocracoke Holdings LLC. The Coastal Land Trust acquired the original 31-acre tract at Springer’s Point in 2002 – also through a bargain sale donation – and bought an adjoining 91 acres from members of the McWilliams family in 2006 before opening Springer’s Point Preserve to the public later that year, according to the Wednesday, May 20 announcement.

“We are very grateful to Ocracoke Holdings LLC, a company led by North Carolina native philanthropist Louis Bacon, and to the family of Herbert Hoell, one of the original investors in this property, for their generosity in making this property available to us,” said Lee Leidy, attorney and northeast region director of the Coastal Land Trust.

“We’re also thankful to the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s North American Wetlands Conservation Act program for a grant, and to several individual donors for generous personal contributions, all of which made this project possible,” continued Leidy. “We are especially pleased to bring good news to everyone in the Ocracoke community, all of whom have been loyal supporters of the Preserve.”

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With this acquisition, the Coastal Land Trust now has 124 protected acres at Springer’s Point on Ocracoke Island that are adjacent to the Cape Hatteras National Seashore. “By securing these properties, the Coastal Land Trust has come full circle from the original bargain sale donation of 31 acres some eighteen years ago. Acquisition of these inholdings, which overlook Pamlico Sound, has been a priority of the Coastal Land Trust,” said Leidy.

springer's point

Springer’s Point Preserve. Courtesy Coastal Land Trust

Today, Springer’s Point Preserve encompasses 124 acres of maritime forest, tidal red cedar forest, salt marsh, wet grasslands and sound front beach. Designated as one of the state’s significant natural heritage areas, it also enjoys a vibrant cultural history. “The preserve’s nature trail winds past ancient, gnarled live oaks to a sandy beach overlooking the infamous Teach’s Hole, where the legendary pirate Blackbeard was finally captured,” stated the Coastal Land Trust announcement. “Beloved by Ocracokers and visitors alike, the Preserve is visited by more than 2,000 people annually.”

“It has been a pleasure to work with the North Carolina Coastal Land Trust during the past twenty years as they have crafted this landscape scale conservation effort at Springer’s Point,” said Bacon. “The addition of these parcels and the recognition of Herbert Hoell’s vision will help ensure that this special place remains one of North Carolina’s most beautiful, unspoiled and well-protected nature preserves.”

Founded in 1992, the mission of the North Carolina Coastal Land Trust is “to enrich the coastal communities of North Carolina through conservation of natural areas and working lands, education, and the promotion of good land stewardship.” The Coastal Land Trust has offices in Wilmington, New Bern and Elizabeth City. For more information, visit



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