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November 17, 2021

Historic African-American land under contract

Photo/David Bohrer
Chuck Kuhn and his family have preserved thousands of acres.
Preserving our county’s important history fits with our focus on helping preserve Virginia’s natural habitats, ecosystems and past.
— Chuck Kuhn
From InsideNoVa

The Kuhn family has put a contract on 42 acres in Saint Louis, just northwest of Middleburg and one of the first African-American townships in Loudoun County.

As part of the buying process, the Kuhns are conducting a study of the site, owned by the developer Mojax. If the purchase proceeds, the goal would be to place the land into conservation easement to protect it from development and preserve the open space for future generations.

“We are excited to be working with Board Chair Phyllis Randall, her fellow supervisors including Tony Buffington, and County Administrator Tim Hemstreet to help save and protect this historically significant and beautiful land. Saint Louis was bought by freed slaves following the Civil War. Preserving our county’s important history fits with our focus on helping preserve Virginia’s natural habitats, ecosystems and past,” Chuck Kuhn, owner of JK Land Holdings and JK Moving Services, said in a statement.

The 42 acres are slated to become 45 homes. With the potential sale to the Kuhns, the land — part of the township that dates to 1891 — instead would be protected and preserved. Conserving the land also would help ensure that nearby and long-time residents of Saint Louis — many of them descendants of the first African-American settlers — could afford to stay in their homes since it would prevent property tax increases in the area. In addition, the purchase would help preserve their family history.

Mr. Kuhn has won numerous awards, including being recognized by the Washington Business Journal as a Top Corporate Philanthropist and the Old Dominion Land Conservancy for his conservation efforts. Other ways that Mr. Kuhn, his family and his companies have protected landmarks and natural habitats include buying and conserving:

• 90-acre property that housed the former historic Middleburg Academy

• 500-acre Wolver Hill Farm in Middleburg

• Historic White’s Ferry in Maryland

• A 35-acre golf course in Leesburg that is being transformed into a park.

• 87 acres in Loudoun that have more native species of plants and wildlife indigenous to Virginia than is typical.

• 150 acres in Purcellville used to start the JK Community Farm, a charitable effort alleviating hunger by growing chemical free crops and livestock and donating them to local food banks.

• The historic and now fully renovated Middleburg Training Center.

• Several thousand acres near Loudoun’s historic villages.

The Kuhn family seeks land acquisitions through JK Land Holdings that can be sold, leased, developed, placed into conservation easement,\ or utilized by sister companies JK Moving Services and CapRelo, a global employee relocation and assignment management firm serving private and public sector clients. Over the past decade, they have strategically redeployed more than 22,000 acres of its purchases into conservation easement, ensuring vulnerable vistas and habitats are preserved and protected for future generations.
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