Senior caned in Lyndeborough

Ninety-one-year-old Jerry Rand was recognized as Lyndeborough’s oldest resident on Sunday, when he received a replica of the Boston Post Cane.

Rand was born in Fitchburg, Mass., March 20, 1918. He purchased the property on Pettingill Hill Road in the mid-1950s. He spent most of his life in the printing business.

This year is the 100th anniversary of the canes, sent out to many New England communities in 1909 as an advertising and subscription-building idea by Edwin Grozier, editor of the former Boston Post newspaper. It is held by the oldest resident of the town and passed on when that person dies. In recognition of the 100th anniversary and a desire to preserve the original cane, The Lyndeborough Historical Society purchased the replica earlier this year and will put the original on display.

On Sunday, the town also announcned Rand’s donation of a conservation easement on 170 acres south of Pettingill Hill Road to the Piscataquog Land Conservancy was announced.

“I’ve been his neighbor for over 40 years and I’ve enjoyed his land,” said neighbor Phil Brooks. “Jerry always said he didn’t want the land to become house lots. He was approached by the PLC and it is about to happen.”

Rand has placed a number of restrictions in the easement, such as no wheeled vehicles and no camping, but the land will be open to the public.

PLC is now in the process of raising money to establish a fund that will ensure the easement is monitored in perpetuity.

Selectman Lorraine Strube said that, in recognition of Rand’s gift, “the town has abated the taxes on the property for the rest of Jerry’s life.”

Rand tore up a replica tax bill for photographers.

“That wasn’t my main motivation for doing this, but it’s nice,” he said.