“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near McLean in Fairfax County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

Burling Defenders

Burling Defenders Marker image. Click for full size.
May 8, 2010
1. Burling Defenders Marker
Inscription. On July 16, 1970 — two days after county residents voted to raise their own taxes to buy this land — bulldozers began uprooting trees to replace this forest with 309 houses. The development plan failed because of a fight waged by hundreds of local residents. It proved a life-changing event for many involved and a case study in citizen action.

The landowner, Edward Burling, died in 1967. His heirs tried selling the 336-acre Burling Tract property for use as a park. That failing, a developer bought it. Nearby homeowners learned of the housing-development plans, and a 16-month battle ensued. Outcry at public meetings, petition drives, a referendum vote, an injuction, media coverage, protest songs, and financial pledges finally overcame political foot shuffling. The will of local citizens prevailed. Burling Tract became Scotts Run Nature Preserve because people like you cared.

Think of all the kids who just see fences
Think of all the kids who could see gates
Land is gone before you even know it
Save the Burling Tract before it’s too late

Protest song by Susan Daniel 1970 Langley High School student

Location. 38° 57.944′ N, 77° 12.053′ W. Marker is near McLean, Virginia, in Fairfax County
Burling Defenders Marker image. Click for full size.
May 8, 2010
2. Burling Defenders Marker
. Marker can be reached from Georgetown Pike (Virginia Route 193). Click for map. The marker is located in Scotts Run Nature Preserve along a hiking trail. There are two trailheads located off of Georgetown Pike (VA Route 193). Marker is at or near this postal address: 7400 Georgetown Pike, Mc Lean VA 22102, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Benvenue (approx. 2.1 miles away); Salona (approx. 2.2 miles away); Odrick’s Corner (approx. 2.4 miles away); William Whann Mackall (approx. 2.5 miles away); McLean (approx. 2.5 miles away); The Laughlin Building (approx. 2.5 miles away); Battle of Lewinsville (approx. 2.6 miles away); Great Falls of the Potomac (approx. 2.6 miles away in Maryland). Click for a list of all markers in McLean.
More about this marker. The background of the marker is a photograph captioned County homeowners, citizens groups, high school students, and conservationists together saved these woods you now enjoy.

There are two photos inset in the marker captioned Students, young children, and parents (top) protest the developer's bulldozing of the Burling Tract, July 1970. and A student mourns the losss of Burling Tract trees taken by the developer's bulldozer.
Also see . . .
Close-up of Photos on Marker image. Click for full size.
May 8, 2010
3. Close-up of Photos on Marker
 Scotts Run Nature Preserve. (Submitted on May 9, 2010.) 
Categories. 20th CenturyEnvironment
Scotts Run Nature Preserve image. Click for full size.
May 8, 2010
4. Scotts Run Nature Preserve
Scotts Run, a small year-round stream that ends in a 30-foot waterfall, flows into the Potomac River.
Credits. This page originally submitted on . This page has been viewed 1,065 times since then and 61 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on . • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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