United States of America, Tennessee, Knox County, Knoxville
Craiglen (Knoxville, Tennessee)
Charles I. Barber, of Barber and McMurry, designed the house in 1926 for Mr. John J. Craig, III., one of the owners of Candoro Marble Company. Landscape architect Charles F. Lester was hired to mold the surrounding eighty acres to complement the strongly Italianate house. Lester laid out green terraces on a slope between the north front of the house and a man-made lake below and created a large formal garden to the west. Developers purchased the property in 1971, with the intent of demolishing the residence and constructing a subdivision. The house and several acres, however, were preserved with the remaining being developed into the Westlands and Westchase condominiums and Craigland subdivision. The current owners of the existing property have restored and renovated the gardens and remaining two acres of property, which combine formal and naturalistic elements. In 1998, a wall was added to define the north side of the formal garden, which features ponds and stone benches original to the property, concrete sculptures, boxwoods, and espaliered "Smoothee" apple trees. To the east of the house is a large lawn surrounded by woods of mature dogwoods, maples, tulip poplars, magnolias, hackberries, walnuts, oaks, and hemlocks. A cottage garden is kept behind the garage. The owners planted an herb garden in large clay pots just outside the kitchen door.
Persons associated with the garden include: Mr. and Mrs. John J. Craig, III. (former owners, 1926-1945); Mrs. John J. Craig, III. (former owner, 1945-1971); Mrs. and Mrs. Calvin Walter (former owners, 1971-1992); Charles F. Lester (landscape architect, 1926); Charles I. Barber (architect, 1926); Albert Milani (marble sculpture, 1926); Mary Spengler (garden designer, 1992-1998); Rosemary Verey (garden consultant, 1995); and Peter Thevenot (plant supplier, 1998).
Copies of original photographs are included in file.
The folder includes a work sheet, garden plans, photo copies of articles, nursery invoices, correspondence, and booklet on Craig family and Candoro Marble Company.