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Jennie Lagoulis Reservation

Birding in Massachusetts

Jennie Lagoulis Reservation
Greenbelt, Essex County’s Land Trust

Boston Road
Newbury, Massachusetts 01951
Jennie Lagoulis Reservation webpage and map

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Essex County

Jennie Lagoulis Reservation
Coordinates: 42.779427, -70.8766752
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About Jennie Lagoulis Reservation
A place where local children have come to play in nature for more than 300 years, Jennie Lagoulis Reservation at Four Rock & Devil’s Den offers a unique landscape and biodiversity of uplands, wetlands and maritime forest.

Before they were limestone and serpentine mines for the colonists, Devil’s Den and Devil’s Basin were quarry sites of the Pawtucket of Agawam and other Algonquians before them arriving via the Merrimack River. An early historian said that the name of the river comes from Merroh-auke, “strong place”, but linguists note that Merri also means “deep” and is contained in an Algonquian word for “sturgeon”, a deep-water fish of the Merrimack.

At Devil’s Den Indigenous peoples mined nuggets and crystals of ores and minerals for practical and spiritual uses, including galena, pyrite, chalcopyrite, epidote, olivine, and quartz, to name a few. They also harvested tree products and sacred plants in the woods, especially cedar, oak, and pine. Twelve thousand years ago people known as the Paleoindians hunted wood bison with spears here in the boreal forest of that time.

Now, a gently rolling, wooded trail with numerous boardwalks is well marked, starting at the parking lot. The first boardwalk skirts the edge of the large, open wet meadow and provides an excellent vantage point for birding.

The trail leads hikers through a pine forest and eventually past the Devil’s Den quarries which can be explored by visitors of all ages. The trail continues over rolling terrain through stands of pine, cedar, and oaks.

When the quarries were abandoned, the land became a place for summer recreation where imaginative children added tales of sorcery, renaming the cave Devil’s Den.

A large gravel parking lot is marked with Greenbelt signage. Note the Devil’s Pulpit rock formation across the street.
From Jennie Lagoulis Reservation webpage and map