About the Property
The Dover Stone Church property is listed in the New York State Open Space Plan and the National Register of Historic Sites and Places.
When the privately-owned 58.5-acre property was offered for sale in 2002, the Town of Dover moved to purchase this historical natural area so closely entwined in the town’s history and culture. The acquisition and preservation of the Stone Church site was the result of a collaborative effort between the Town of Dover, the Dutchess Land Conservancy and the Friends of the Dover Stone Church, a local citizens group. Grants secured from state and local sources helped restore the former maple tree-lined right-of-way, build a path from the village, and install a footbridge over the Stone Church Brook.
In 2009, neighboring property owners graciously donated a conservation easement on 50 acres adjacent to the historic right-of-way and subsequently donated 63 acres in fee along the land’s southern border to the Town to expand the Stone Church Preserve and further protect the site’s natural beauty and ecology.
In 2014, the Town of Dover, with grant funding from the Dutchess Land Conservancy acquired an additional 52 acres of land adjoining the southern border of the preserve. Three miles of nature trails were blazed and opened in the summer of 2015 to enjoy the unique rock outcroppings, scenic vistas and fauna of the West Mountain ridge and appreciate the Stone Church’s age-old ecological history.