Frederick Law Olmsted

Frederick Law OlmstedFrederick Law Olmsted (1822-1903) is known as the father of American landscape architecture.

Olmsted collaborated with English landscape architect Calvert Vaux on New York's Central Park (1858), as well as the grounds of the U.S. Capitol (1874; 1890s) and the White House in Washington, D.C. Other commissions included Boston's Park Systems (1878) and George Washington Vanderbilt's Biltmore Estate (1888) in Asheville, North Carolina.

Olmsted created several landscapes in Newport, Rhode Island, including plans for Ocean Drive and Easton's Beach, and the gardens at Rough Point and Hammersmith Farm. His protege, Ernest Bowditch, was chief landscape architect for several Newport homes on Bellevue Avenue.

Olmsted's sons, Charles John Olmsted and Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., continued their father's landscaping business as the firm of Olmsted Brothers.


Kay Davis, University of Virginia, © 2001