About QHPT

Mission & Preservation Objectives...

The Quissett Harbor Preservation Trust is a not-for-profit environmental organization created to preserve, maintain, protect and enhance the natural environment and related ecosystems of the Quissett Harbor area and to take action to recognize and minimize threats to the overall health of the area.

It is a 501(c)(3) organization so contributions are tax deductible.

The trust’s original goal was repairing the Knob’s rock armor, restoring its natural features, and implementing a management plan
for its use and maintenance.

The long-term goal of the Preservation Trust is to create a permanent endowment for the support of appropriate tax-deductible
purposes so that we will always be able to enjoy and preserve what we are so lucky to have inherited.

Presently, special projects and management of parking, security and similar needs are funded by the Land Trust, Yacht Club and
Quissett Association on an ad hoc basis under the pressures of increasing public use and natural forces.  

The preservation objectives are:

Stewardship of Local Area...

Stewardship of the natural resources for the harbor and surrounding habitats involves inventory, monitoring, and research of natural systems; habitat conservation, management, and restoration; interpretation and education; and partnerships. Accordingly, the Trust works to safeguard and enhance the ecological balance and integrity of the local area and its important ecological features. 

Inventory, Monitoring & Research
While we know a great deal about the complex natural systems of the landscapes and marine environment under our care, there is much that we do not know. Our decision-making process is augmented with both the best science available as well as inventory, monitoring, and research initiatives. Areas of focus include:

The flora and fauna of Quissett Harbor and the surrounding area were identified during a series of site visits. A detailed listing of the flora was compiled. During this time, the area was divided into major vegetation zones and the dominant species within each zone was recorded. In the forested areas, both major canopy and understory species were identified. Results of the flora inventory are listed here. 

Habitat Conservation & Management
Geology, climate, natural forces, and human activity have converged to support a variety of ecological areas familiar to all of us, such as valuable coastal and wetland resources. The coastal beaches, coastal dunes, coastal banks and salt marshes play a crucial role in buffering inland property against destructive forces of coastal storms. They also provide critical protection for the waterways of Quissett Harbor. Many of these areas face a variety of threats. The Trust is working to combat these threats in a number of ways, including:

We are all called to be stewards of the local diverse—and fragile—natural resources. While the work of the Trust and other organizations is vital, our visiting public must also share some of the responsibility of protecting these resources. The Trust actively organizes interpretive and educational programs and develops literature and signs. These activities increase public awareness and understanding of the challenges and opportunities which lie ahead and help to explain the roles that we all can play to bring about successful preservation outcomes over the long-term.

The success of our work in ecological resource protection often depends on strong collaborative partnerships with other conservation organizations, government agencies, researchers, and volunteers. The Trust also collaborates with several state-wide agencies and regional conservation organizations.

Education & Recreation...

As opportunities to explore natural coastal habitats diminish, we recognize that Quissett Harbor and the Knob offer an increasingly important resource for education and recreation. 

It's not enough to simply provide a landscape for visitors to explore—true conservationists are motivated by an understanding of what they are experiencing. We will be offering a range of educational programs and literature at the Knob to help visitors explore the landscape and learn about history, land use, and ecology.

Bulletin boards, wayside displays, trail maps, self-guided landscape tour brochures, and interpretive guides help visitors to interpret the landscape while they experience it.

We oversee the Harbor, the Knob and surrounding habitats for people with a wide range of interests. Historically, the Quissett Harbor area has provided people with tranquil opportunities to study nature, to watch birds, to go for a relaxing sail or a refreshing swim, to fish for blues or stripers, take photographs, go dog walking, or watch another extraordinary sunset over Buzzards Bay and beyond. Today, many visitors are increasingly seeking special places like Quissett Harbor to pursue a wider range of active and passive recreational opportunities. Parking is limited, and rules are strictly enforced.


The advocacy efforts of the Quissett Harbor Preservation Trust relating to public issues will focus on specific items of legislation that directly influence the pursuit of our mission. This effort will be the responsibility of the Public Issues Committee, a subcommittee of the Board. The committee will review pending and proposed legislation and recommend action on initiatives where our advocacy can be most effective.

In pursuing legislative issues, we will coordinate our efforts with other conservation and environmental organizations, including The Coalition for Buzzards Bay and the Falmouth Association Concerned with Estuaries & Salt Ponds (FACES), with goals similar to ours. 

Resource Links:

Overview of Other Quissett Harbor Organizations... 

Quissett Yacht Club
Quissett Yacht Club was founded in 1912 by residents of the Quissett Harbor House and has been closely entwined with the
Harbor House ever since. The yacht club manages without owning any real estate. What remains of the old hotel and its adjacent land
is currently owned by the Quissett Harbor House Land Trust which accommodates the QYC as part of a long tradition. Yacht club
members are guests on this property. Tenants rent the cottage year round and Jenkins House during the summer. Please respect their

QYC members are entitled to purchase one or more dinghy stickers for the Harbor House dock float, and a parking permit for
parking one car at the Harbor House parking lot. Members are invited to the club’s Fourth of July and Labor Day weekend meetings in
Willet Hall (the former Harbor House dining room). Racers and Waterlilies gather on the deck between the rental cottage and the
sailing class room, and the junior sailing program is offered space for instruction, gathering and boat storage.

The entire QYC membership is encouraged to race in series and cup races, enroll their children in the junior sailing program at
member rates, participate in Waterlilies sailing class for women and the new Racing 101 program for racers and would be racers, and
enjoy various social activities listed in the yacht club calendar, including the annual Quissett Yacht Club Ball and special picnics at the
Quamquissett Beach Club and Weepecket Islands.

Quissett Harbor House Land Trust
Cornelia Carey owned all the land around the harbor beyond the boatyard: Harbor Head, Petrel’s Rest, the Barnacle, the Harbor
House and the Knob, as well as other property in Quissett. When Miss Carey died in 1973 her will left the Knob as a bird sanctuary. It
is owned by Salt Pond Areas Bird Sanctuaries, Inc.

Miss Carey’s heirs made it possible for a group of former Harbor House residents and others organized by Lewis W. Francis Jr. to
buy the remainder of the hotel property as the Quissett Harbor House Land Trust. The Land Trust preserves the Harbor House and
surrounding property. Anyone interested in joining the Land Trust to support its mission or enjoy broader use of the property should
speak to Dana Rodin, the Trust’s president, or any member of the board.

Quissett Association
The Quissett Association is composed of all those with an interest in the Quissett area who attend the annual meeting the Friday
before Labor Day and/or make a contribution. It is a very informal organization with no dues or membership list. The Quissett
Association has contributed to both phases of the rebuilding of the harbor wall and the Quissett Harbor Preservation Trust’s Knob
project. The association represents the community to the town with varying success. One success is the four-way stop signs at the
Quissett four corners.

Quissett Harbor Preservation Trust, Inc.
P.O. Box 391
Falmouth, MA 02541
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