Frederick Law Olmsted

The Father of American Landscape Architecture

April 26, 1822
Today is the birthday of the visionary 19th-century landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted.

Frederick was born to a prosperous family in Hartford, Connecticut.

Aside from his legacy as a landscape architect, Frederick dedicated his entire life to social reform.

In many ways, Frederick's designs for public spaces played an important role in his social work. Frederick's vision for Central Park was an ordered oasis for all of the city’s social classes, where everyone could come together and enjoy nature.

Dubbed the Nation's Foremost Park-maker, Frederick designed Boston's Emerald Necklace, Forest Park in Springfield, Massachusetts, and Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge.

Considered the father of American landscape architecture, Frederick situated his design firm in Brookline and named it Fairsted - a likely nod to his family's ancestral home in England.

In 1893 Frederick helped design the Chicago World's Fair.

It was Frederick Law Olmsted who said,

“The enjoyment of scenery employs the mind without fatigue and yet exercises it; tranquilizes it and yet enlivens it.”


"The root of all my good work is an early respect for, regard and enjoyment of scenery."


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Frederick Law Olmsted
Frederick Law Olmsted

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