Frederick Law Olmsted

Frederick Law Olmsted is regarded as the founder of American landscape architecture and is best known for designing Central Park in New York City. Olmsted produced designs and plans for hundreds of parks throughout the US during the late 1800’s. 

New York City in 1857 was a tough place to live and work. The city was crowded, dirty and growth went unchecked. Working conditions were difficult. Olmstead wanted a public park to be a place where all people could enjoy the beauty of nature and get a break from the stresses of daily life. His goal for Central Park was to build a place where all classes are represented with a common purpose, each individual adding by their mere presence to the pleasure of all others, all contributing to the greater happiness of each. 

Public parks and open spaces are places where people can find their own joy. Olmsted stated: “It is a scientific fact that the occasional contemplation of natural scenes increases the subsequent capacity for happiness and the means for securing that happiness”. A park was a work of art and a necessity of urban life just as much in the 1800’s as it is today. 

Olmsted believed in the need to preserve natural places for future generations. He believed a republic had a responsibility to protect scenic beauty. “The beauty of the park should be the beauty of the fields, the meadow, the green pastures and the still waters. What one gains is tranquility and rest of the mind”. 

Frederick Law Olmsted had a vision for public space and designed parks that people could enjoy 100 years after he was gone. He planned parks that would withstand the test of time. At OLMSTED FORGE we are inspired by Olmsted’s vision for designs that last. We honor him with our commitment to manufacturing gardening tools that last. Gardeners are a part of history and tradition like so many who have worked the soil in this county for centuries. As Olmsted stated, “When immersed in nature, for a brief period, you can put yourself back in time”.

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