Verona, Italy

A group of children with flowers in the cloister of San Zeno, Verona, Italy, May 10, 1918, by Fernand Cuville, via Archives of the Planet Collection – Albert Kahn Museum /Département des Hauts-de-Seine.

Tradition has it that the crypt of San Zeno is where Romeo married Juliet.

The autochrome above is one of about seventy-two thousand that were commissioned and then archived by Albert Kahn, a wealthy French banker and pacifist, between 1909 and 1931. Kahn sent thirteen photographers and filmmakers to fifty countries “to fix, once and for all, aspects, practices, and modes of human activity whose fatal disappearance is no longer ‘a matter of time.'”* The resulting collection is called Archives de la Planète and now resides in its own museum at Kahn’s old suburban estate at Boulogne-Billancourt, just west of Paris. Since June 2016, the archive has also been available for viewing online here.

*words of Albert Kahn, 1912. Also, the above photo (A 19 474) is © Collection Archives de la Planète – Musée Albert-Kahn and used under its terms, here.

King’s College, Cambridge

On a quick trip to Cambridge last week, I really liked this border of Echium pininana (or giant viper’s bugloss) along the lawn behind King’s College, here. (The building is actually part of Clare College.)

A different kind of foundation planting.

The biennials, which are native to the Canary Islands, can grow as tall as 13′ (or 4 m.). They want well-drained soil, full sun, and shelter from wind.

They are also called tower of jewels.
Looking back to the King’s College Chapel.

Trinity College

I also liked this wide walkway border of Queen’s Anne lace and long grass at the entrance to Trinity College.

The tree on the right is a grafted descendant of the apple tree that inspired Isaac Newton.

The Sunday porch: East Hampton, N.Y.

Home of E.E. McCall, East Hampton, New York, between ca. 1910 and ca. 1915, by Bain News Service, via Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

The house was a split level. You can see the two-story side here.

Edward Everett McCall was a Justice of the Supreme Court of New York. He also ran unsuccessfully for mayor of New York City as the Tammany candidate. He died in 1924, and his seaside house burned down three years later.

Life in gardens: Tilba Tilba

Young boy and baby girl in long grass, probably Tilba Tilba area, New South Wales, ca. 1895, by William Henry Corkhill, via National Library of Australia Commons on flickr.

Corkhill was an amateur photographer who took thousands of pictures of his family members and neighbors between 1890 and 1910, often posing them in their gardens.  In 1975, his daughter gave his approximately 1,000 surviving glass plate negatives to the National Library.

The Sunday porch: Pleasant Hill, N.C.

Pleasant Hill, N.C. F.B. Johnston, Library of Congress

Pleasant Hill, Vance County, North Carolina, 1938, by Frances Benjamin Johnston for the Carnegie Survey of the Architecture of the South via Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

Pleasant Hill,cropped, N.C. F.B. Johnston, Library of Congress
Detail of photo above.

The plantation house, later known as Rivenoak, was built sometime between 1750 and 1780 by Philemon Hawkins, Jr.

A 2011 view of the house is here.  Unfortunately the stone columns are gone.