Raleigh couple donates land for new park
Posted November 14, 2011
A Raleigh couple has donated their home and four surrounding acres to the city of Raleigh for a new park, city leaders announced Monday.
Mary Coker Joslin and her husband, the late William Joslin, moved into their home on West Lake Drive – at the intersection of Lassiter Mill Road and Glenwood Avenue – in February 1950 and were passionate about nature and conservation.
The land includes a collection of camellia, an arboretum of unusual trees, a native woodland, a formal patio garden, naturalistic groupings of special native, cultivated and exotic plants, ridges, bottoms, thickets and a natural stream.
The Joslins' daughter, Nell Joslin, said both her parents believed strongly in the importance of connecting people and nature.
"For this garden, as part of the Raleigh park system, to now be used to nourish those connections in all citizens of our city and to give us a permanent place of serenity and beauty and to provide opportunities for environmental education, respite and repose, is the culmination of their dream," she said.
Under an agreement with the city, Mary Joslin, 88, will continue living in the home and caring for the property until she dies.
The property, valued at about $1.17 million, will then be transferred to the city, where it will be open free to the public.
The city does plan to open the garden several times a year for tours, as the Joslins have done for decades.