2005 BES Annual Meeting Presentation and Poster Abstracts
FREDERICK LAW OLMSTED, JR. AND THE CREATION OF GWYNNS FALLS/LEAKIN PARK
Abstract: The average person gives little thought to how or why urban parks were developed. In recent years ample attention has been given to the ecological importance of urban green spaces, but little has focused on the means by which these lands were acquired by municipalities. The formation of the City of Baltimore’s park system can be linked to the prestigious Olmsted Brothers firm. This landscape architecture firm not only provided the city with general park plans, but was also influential in acquiring some of the specific parcels of property that were incorporated into the city’s public lands. Olmsted Brothers, especially, Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., encouraged the city to integrate stream valleys into their park system. His role was especially significant when it came to identifying a location for Leakin Park. The lengthy and controversial decision regarding where and for whom Leakin Park should be created was settled thanks to Olmsted’s guidance.