Vintage landscape: Thornewood

A little Monday morning prettiness. . .

Thornewood, 1923, F.B.Johnston, via LibraryCongressThe walk to the house from the flower garden at “Thornewood,” Lakewood, Washington, 1923, a hand-colored glass lantern slide by Frances Benjamin Johnston, via Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

The house was built between 1909 and 1911 for Chester and Anna Thorne — constructed partly  from a 400-year-old Elizabethan manor house, which Chester purchased in England and had dismantled and shipped to Lakewood.

Thornewood’s over 30 acres of formal “English” gardens were designed by James Frederick Dawson and John Charles Olmsted of Olmsted Brothers from 1908 to 1913.  They were originally cared for by 28 gardeners.

In 1926, House Beautiful magazine named Thornewood one of the five most beautiful formal gardens in America. In 1929, the Garden Club of America held its national convention there.

Today, the property still exists as the Thornewood Castle Inn and Gardens.

It is magnificent. It is what God would have done if he had the money.

— [of a perfectly groomed estate] Noel Coward

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