The latest on real estate recordings and new technology from the Middlesex North Registry of Deeds in Lowell
Yesterday’s Northwest Weekly section of the Globe carried a story about a dispute that has arisen regarding the disposition of the land that was once Fort Devens, a US Army base that came into existence during World War One that was recently closed (sorry, but I can’t find the article online). The land acquired for Fort Devens formerly belonged to the Massachusetts towns of Ayer, Harvard and Shirley. Officials in those towns, especially the town of Harvard which lays claim to 60% of the former Fort Devens, want the portions of the military outpost that were once part of their communities to be “re-annexed.” Others, however, want Devens to be incorporated as the Commonwealth’s 352nd town (East Brookfield, incorporated in 1920, was the last “new” town in Massachusetts). Having once been assigned to Devens and being somewhat aware of its vast expanses of undeveloped land, I can understand why there is a dispute about its disposition. An interesting twist from a registry of deeds perspective is this: should Devens be incorporated as a separate town, which registry district would it fall within? Ayer and Shirley are both in the Middlesex South District, but Harvard is in the Worcester District. Next time I see Gene Brune and Tony Vigliotti, (the registers of Middlesex South and Worcester) I’ll ask them what they think.
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