Several Dartmouth alumni have threatened to cut off donations to their alma mater unless it helps them save their view of Eastman Lake in Grantham, New Hampshire, 20 miles from the Dartmouth campus.
The Eastman Community Association has approved a plan to build 21 lakeside condominiums in Grantham, where an estimated 15 percent of the residents are Dartmouth alumni and their families.
But according to Nancy L. Holbrook, a resident of Eastman and wife of Cary! F. Holbrook, Dartmouth '20, "about 50 percent of the Eastman residents are upset."
Henry McCarthy, Dartmouth '30, has donated over a million dollars to Dartmouth but said he would stop contributing if the college didn't use its influence to stop condominium development.
"We came here with an understanding that there would never by any buildings on the lake," said Mrs. McCarthy, adding that she had no written documents to that effect.
But according to Emil Hanslin, the manager of Controlled Environments, the 21 condos have always been a part of the Eastman plan and the residents of the area had never been told otherwise.
"This whole thing has been caused by a tiny zealous group of people who have nothing better to do for seven days a week." Hanslin said.
Chairman of the Citizen's Action Committee Stewart S. Sargent said that he has communicated with 100 residents and property owners in Eastman and that many of the people concerned are not Dartmouth alumni.
The 3500-acre. 2189-lot Eastman Lake development was established in 1971 through funds from Dartmouth. The Bank of New Hampshire. The Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests, and United Life Insurance.
Robert B. Graham '42. Dartmouth News Service director, explained that the college helped purchase the property in order to make a modest return from the Eastman project while still maintaining "its environmental and aesthetic soundness."
Graham added that up until now. Eastman has lived up to the expectations of its residents, who oppose over-development in the area.
Dartmouth officials were unable to disclose how much they may lose if Eastman alumni cut off donations, but Graham said "It's enough so that we're concerned."