Archive for 'Garden'

James Madison’s Montpelier (1812)

Montpelier

Back in 2007 I visited Montpelier, the plantation estate of James Madison located near Orange, Virginia. It was an interesting time to visit, because the house was still undergoing restoration and so we went on a “hard hat tour.” It would be interesting to revisit now that the restorations have been completed. The oldest part of the house was built around 1764 by the president’s father, James Madison, Sr. James Madison built an addition to the house in 1797 as a residence for himself and his wife Dolley. In 1812 he unified the interior of the house and added two wings on either side. The house was enlarged and much altered in the twentieth century by William duPont and then by his daughter, Marion duPont. Now owned by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the house has been restored to its 1812 appearance. › Continue reading…

Olana (1872)

Last Friday, I visited Olana for the first time. The orientalizing “Persian”-style home of Hudson River School landscape painter Frederic Edwin Church, Olana is located on a hill (surrounded by an extensive property) in Hudson, New York. Church, aided by architect Calvert Vaux, constructed Olana between 1870 and 1872. He added a studio wing to the house over the period 1888–1891. The house has been a New York State Historic Site since 1966. › Continue reading…

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New York Chinese Scholar’s Garden

A few years ago I visited the New York Chinese Scholar’s Garden, which is part of the Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden on New York City’s Staten Island. It is a fairly recent New York attraction, having opened in 1999. It was constructed by Chinese artists and artisans from Suzhou, which is renowned for its classical Chinese Gardens. Pictured above is the Tea House of Hearing Pines. See below for more pictures. › Continue reading…

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Morikami Japanese Gardens

A great place to visit in Florida is the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens in Palm Beach County. I have been there several times, most recently on the same trip when I visited Mandarin in Jacksonville. The museum and gardens are in a park on the site of a Japanese agricultural colony that existed in the early twentieth century. The last remaining settler, George Morikami, left his land to Palm Beach county to preserve as a park. The gardens represent several different periods in the historical development of Japanese gardens. › Continue reading…

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I’ve written before about my recent visit to Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, where there are many surviving colonial structures built by the Moravians. Adjacent to these structures is an area by Monocacy Creek (Flooding is a problem!) called the Colonial Industrial Quarter, where the industrious Moravians practiced a variety of trades. Some of these industrial buildings are in ruins, but others survive. The entire complex is now part of the Historic Bethlehem Partnership and is worth visiting. Click below for pics and info on some of the buildings. › Continue reading…

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