Owned By: Town of Rockland
Town park with a playground, a 9-hole disc golf course, and at least a mile of nature trails, plus a swimming pond and athletic fields.
Overseen by Rockland Youth Commission. The relatively new (2020) playground is a popular feature here, as is the 9-hole disc course. There is a small swimming pond, with a sandy beach, for use by Rockland residents only. In season, it has lifeguards on duty Monday through Friday, 11am to 5pm. Also, weekends 12-5pm, but only during extreme hot spells.
According to Remembering Old Abington by Martha Campbell, Hartsuff Park gets its name from the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) Post #74 in East Abington (now Rockland), which was named for Major General George L. Hartsuff, commander of the 23rd Army Corps. The park was initially opened as a baseball field “in the days of the ‘street-car circuit’ when the teams in the area were all connected by the electric cars and used that means of transportation to get to the games.”
This land is within the region of the Massachuseuk (or Massachusett) Native American tribe. According to Martha Campbell’s Remembering Old Abington, the original town of Abington included today’s Abington and Rockland as well as most of Whitman. In the 1660s, European settlers from Weymouth began establishing homesteads within the town. While the settlers came from Massachusetts Bay Colony, the land was part of Plymouth Colony. All of the 18 original land grants were along the Satucket Path, a trail established by Native Americans that extended from Wessagusset Beach in North Weymouth to Robbins Pond in East Bridgewater.
The Hartsuff Park Nature Trail extends through much of the property. Between that and the additional trails of the disc golf course, there is a least a mile altogether, mostly through the woods. The trail is mostly flat and wide, with the occasional small hill. Some sections are rocky. It also features a large wooden footbridge, which extends over a sometimes-dry stream bed.
Habitats and Wildlife
This park is bordered on all sides by woodlands — primarily oak and beech, with some pine and yellow birch. The land drains to Cushing Brook, a tributary to the Drinkwater River, which leads to the Indian Head River, and ultimately to the North River system.
Historic Site: No
Boat Launch: No
Lifeguards: Lifeguards in season.
Size: 16.5 acres
Hours: Dawn to dusk.
Parking: Ample on-site parking at the 146 Hingham Street entrance. Additional parking at the Hartsuff Street entrance.
Trail Difficulty: Easy
Benches, several picnic tables (some within pavilions), grills, trash receptacles, Little Free Library, playground, 9-hole disc golf course, athletic fields (basketball and soccer), bathhouse (in season), swimming pond (in season, for Rockland residents). Geocache location.
Dogs: No animals allowed.
Boat Ramp: No
ADA Access: No
Scenic Views: Yes
Waterbody/Watershed: Cushing Brook (North River watershed)