Sunday, October 11, 2009

Double Brook and France Street

This small pond viewed from a dam on France Street in Middleborough is part of the Rocky Gutter Wildlife Management Area. Created in the 1800s by the damming of Double Brook which drains a portion of Rocky Gutter before flowing eastward into the Weweantic River, this pond was originally intended as a mill pond to power the Shurtleff saw mill on the opposite side of the roadway which was long operated by Nathaniel A. Shurtleff. Later it was used as a resevoir for the cranberry bogs just north of it on the west side of France Street. While still used today for this purpose, it is now protected within the confines of the Mangement Area. Many small brooks such as this were similarly dammed during the boom in cranberry bog construction at the close of the 19th century in Middleborough where the close proximity of bogs, streams and sandy terrain combined to provide ideal conditions for the propogation of the little red berry.

The second photograph captures the cranberry bogs on France Street which draw their water from the France Street pond. An expansive landscape of cloud-studded blue skies, autumnal colors mixed with the dark evergreen of white pine trees, and a carpet of cranberry vines is one of the visual delights of autumn in southern Plymouth County.

Photographs by Mike Maddigan, October 11, 2009.


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