Seventeen years have passed since Everett Saulter donated to the people of Potter County what is now known as Saulter Preserve. Groups and families use the pavilion and grounds for reunions, meetings, picnics or casual nature walks. It is located off Rt. 44 between Coudersport and Coneville in Hebron Township. The 57-acre preserve includes trails with interpretive signs, indoor and outdoor gathering areas, and a rich diversity of trees and other vegetation preferred by deer, birds and other species.
A timber appraisal on the acreage came in at roughly $1 million and the land itself has considerable value. But Everett Saulter wasn’t interested in selling. The long-time Potter County resident wanted to leave a lasting gift that would accommodate recreation and social gatherings, and provide wildlife habitat and nature education. He accomplished all of that and more. Until recently, Saulter, 98, would walk the woodlot and trail system on his former property, anxious to guide visitors on a tour. He takes pride in the fact that more groups and families are using the preserve.
Trees include native white pine, cherry, red oak, maple and other varieties of hardwoods. There is also a three-acre clearing on the southeastern side of the tract that protects headwaters of the South Branch of the Oswayo. Potter County officials have designated portions of the county’s “Growing Greener” grant from the state to develop and maintain the preserve. Successive boards of Potter County Commissioners have committed themselves to protecting the special piece of God’s Country.