Dana Common Trip

June 9th, 2013

On Sunday, June 9, a group of 28 intrepid Mass Miata members in fifteen cars participated in a Seinfeldian – like adventure.

We went on a trip to a town that isn’t there.

Starting in the 1920’s buildings were razed, people moved, and bodies disinterred from cemeteries in the towns of Dana, Prescott, Greenwich, and Enfield to make way for the Quabbin Reservoir. On April 28, 1938 the towns were disincorporated and ceased to exist. The town of Dana was absorbed into Petersham.

After meeting at Main Street Automotive in Clinton, club members headed for an early lunch at the Salem Cross Inn in West Brookfield. The group fueled up on either meatloaf or roast stuffed chicken breast to have plenty of energy for the day ahead.

Then it was off to gate 40 in Petersham, the road into Dana Common. No vehicles are allowed in so access is by foot or bicycle … although Miatas may have been able to slip under the gate. The road is paved but deteriorating with gentle undulations along the way. After about a 1 ½ – 2 mile walk, we arrived at the Dana Common.

There you see the site where the center of the former town stood. Left are foundations, cellar holes, and other remnants where this town once stood. Pictures on posts identify some of the sites of former buildings.

After exploring the area we head back to the cars … I’m not sure how they did it, but I swear, the parking area was moved further away.

Then it was off for our final stop at Calico & Creme in Hubbardston for a sweet treat before the drive home.

Event organizer Janet Baylis arranged for a perfect day with temperatures around 80, blue skies, and puffy clouds.

The town of Dana may be gone but memories of the trip will last forever.

Submitted by Keith E. Jacobson

 

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