United States of America, Pennsylvania, Montgomery County, Pottstown
Company Farm (Pottstown, Pennsylvania)
The property, being primarily a farm, had a relatively simple garden behind the house except for more sophisticated landscaping by the former owners of the Tudor-style house. Historically, there has been a strong connection of the property to the old Schuylkill Canal. In the early 19th century, the farm was used to raise mules needed to pull the barges from upstate Pennsylvania to Philadelphia. The present owners wished to emphasize the natural landscape. A pond is fed from run-off from a spring. Rhododendrons are interspersed with grassy areas and stone walls. A trip to a Japanese garden, designed by Kobori Enshu, inspired the owners to recreate it using stones to represent cranes and a small central peninsula representing the island of eternal youth. A later trip to Thailand inspired the garden's Thai Spirit House. The garden has been used for Thai students to perform dances, for weddings, and as a gathering place for Easter sunrise services and garden tours.
Special appreciation for the owners' children's hard work is shown by placing bronze statues in special garden settings. "Celebration," by L'Deane Trueblood (1999), is dancing in a large oval garden. The bronze statue, "Wings," by Gary Price (1996), stands on a high rock depicting a young boy launching his model plane. "Child of Peace," by Edward Fenno Hoffman III. (1960), depicts a boy cuddling a dove. "Garden Chimes," by Val Bertoia (2000), represents the gardener's love for music.
Persons associated with the garden include: Thomas and Richard Penn (patent owners, 1754); James and John Ingles (former owners, 1754-1806); Christian and Daniel Beary (former owners, 1806-1836); Eli Harley (1836-1844); John Reifsnyder (former owner, 1844-1847); Schuylkill Navigation Company (former owner, 1847-1896); Reading Railroad (former owners, 1896-1914); Joseph Elwood Reitenbaugh (former owner, 1914-1928); Anthony N. Bullock (former owner, 1928-1934); G. Clymer Brooke (former owner, 1934-1945); Claude and Minnie Shelton (former owners, 1945-1970); and Robert Clevenger (former owner, 1970).
The folder includes a worksheet, copies of photographs, copy of Pennsylvania Historic Resource Survey form, copies of public sale announcements, 1843 property inventory, 1754 deed, and garden plan.