United States of America, Maine, Hancock County, Seal Harbor
Cairn House (Seal Harbor, Maine)
Cairn House, designed by architect Douglass Fitch, was built of native pink granite on Mt. Desert Island circa 1930. Granite was used for the terrace, walkways and steps, and throughout the garden for planted ledges, walls and benches. Native plants include mosses, ferns, high and low bush blueberries, cranberries, and other shrubs and vines. There is an ornamental and culinary herb and rock garden, lavishly planted ornamental gardens alongside the house that contain perennials, ferns and rhododendrons, and a cutting and kitchen garden planted in beds. The paths are gravel or granite interspersed with moss groundcover.
The first owner, William Elder Marcus, named the property Granelder. The next owners, Mr. and Mrs. Hugh Merritt Matheson, added approximately one and one-quarter acres of woodlands and gardens, and called the property Seaforth. Dr. Claude A. Burnett propagated rhododendrons on the property, which he called Crathes. Dr. James and Emily Fuchs named the property Cairn House and had the gardens redesigned by Patrick Chassé (ASLA), who created the annual and perennial rock garden, the cutting, herb and kitchen gardens, and the garden area at the entrance to the house.
Persons associated with the garden include Patrick Chassé (landscape architect, 1988 to present); Douglass Fitch (architect, 1928-1930); William Elder Marcus (former owner, 1928-1930s); Hugh Merritt Matheson (former owner, 1935-1960s); Claude A. Burnett (1960s-1983); Eric E. Soderholtz (potter, 1867-1959); Elisabeth Curran (gardener, 2000), Dan DeLong (gardener, 2004), Mary Woodfin (gardener, 2004), and Annie Schwartz (2005).
The folder includes worksheets and other information.
This property is featured in Town and Country Magazine (date of publication unknown)