Wolfe’s Neck Farm
Wolfe’s Neck Farm: Transforming Relationships with Farming and Food for a Healthier Planet
Wolfe’s Neck Center for Agriculture and the Environment in Freeport, Maine, is a place for the public to camp, hike, and learn how food is grown. But it wouldn’t still exist as a farm if not for the vision of Eleanor Smith, who bought the land with her husband Lawrence over 70 years ago.
The couple, natives of Philadelphia, acquired Wolfe’s Neck Farm in 1947 as a summer retreat where they raised organic beef and practiced sustainable farming. For the next 40 years, they watched as neighboring farms on the peninsula went up for sale. Rather than let them go out of business and be developed, they bought them.
In 1985, after Lawrence’s passing, Eleanor Smith and her six children decided to donate their Freeport landmark to American Farmland Trust, then an organization just getting started. In turn, AFT agreed to make sure the farm would never be developed.
In 2017, Wolfe’s Neck Farm was renamed Wolfe’s Neck Center for Agriculture and the Environment—a name befitting its role as a climate change research hub, educational center, and training ground for next-generation farmers.
Since the Smiths made their gift, AFT and the Wolfe’s Neck Farm Foundation, established to oversee the farm’s daily operations, have worked together on a multi-year master plan that guides the future of the property.