80 Market St, Rockland, MA 02370, USA
Owned By: Town of Rockland
Small pond for fishing and paddling near Rockland’s commercial center.
The first recorded name of this pond was Silver Lake. Later it was known as Reed’s Pond and Studley’s Pond. It was formed in 1705 when the French brothers dammed French’s Stream and constructed a sawmill on site. In the 1800s, Samuel Reed, an abolitionist, lived beside the pond. His home was a station on the Underground Railroad. In 1901, Gideon Studley erected a box factory on this site. The island within the pond is named for him (Gideon’s Island). Also, in the 1800s, the Tudor Ice Company of Boston harvested ice here.
In the early 20th century, use of the pond became more recreational. There was a pavilion, and swimming was a popular pastime in the summer. This continued into the 1950s/1960s, but poor water quality eventually put an end to it. Fishing remains a common activity here. Paddlers are also welcome. Vestiges of walls, steps and decorative features from prior enterprises can be found along the edges of the pond. The Spring Lake Cemetery is immediately adjacent.
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.
In her book, Campbell also recounts how Gideon Studley found a Native American stone mortar near the pond, while plowing a cornfield on the site of what is now the parking area for Rockland Plaza.
No trails, but there is enough shoreline for a short walk.
Habitats and Wildlife
The pond has some oak, maple and hemlock trees along its perimeter. There is a sandy beach-like area, suitable for fishing. Largemouth bass and sunfish are sometimes found here. In season, it’s common to see ducks and geese on the pond. French’s Stream, a tributary to the Indian Head River, flows through the pond. Please do not feed the ducks/waterfowl.
Historic Site: No
Boat Launch: Yes
Size: 29 acres
Hours: Dawn to Dusk
Parking: Limited on-site parking. Access road is to the left of the CVS on Market Street (Route 123).
Trail Difficulty: Easy
Benches, geocache location.
Boat Ramp: No
ADA Access: No
Scenic Views: Yes
Waterbody/Watershed: French's Stream (North River watershed)