United States of America, New York, Nassau, Old Westbury
Groton Place (Old Westbury, New York)
The landscaping for Groton Place was designed in the 1930s by Umberto Innocenti and Richard K. Webel, featuring uninterrupted axial passages with stopping places but no feeling of enclosure. Since then the trees on the property have matured, the serpentine yew hedge has filled in, and the original oval rose garden has been converted to flowering shrubs. A ha-ha separates the house and the ornamental gardens from horse pastures. A pinetum shades the rectangular swimming pool, and woodlands on the property are filled with native trees and shrubs. A mature cedar allée leads to the stables, the one example of a passage that ends in a structure. Architects McKim, Mead & White designed a house and outbuildings at Groton Place in 1912, but that house was razed in 1948 and another Georgian house on the property built in the 1930s is the residence of the current owners.
In 1968 a parcel of 250 acres of land was sold to a golf club, and the remaining 108 acres of Groton Place were placed in a conservation easement for protection.
Persons associated with the garden include William Willis (deed holder, 1700s); members of the John Titus and Jacob Hicks families (former owners, 1700s-circa 1895); Robert Dudley Winthrop (former owner, 1895); Beekman Winthrop (former owner, 1912); Grenville L. Winthrop (former owner, 1940); Robert W. Winthrop (former owner, 1943-1997); Henry Renwick Sedgwick (architect, 1932); McKim, Meade & White (architects of former house and stables, circa 1912); Umberto Innocenti (d. 1968) & Richard K.Webel (d. 2000)(landscape architects, 1930s).
The folder includes worksheets, photocopies of articles and other information.
This property is featured in North Shore Long Island: Country Houses 1890-1950 by Paul Mateyunas, Acanthus Press; Making a Landscape of Continuity: The Practice of Innocenti & Webel by Gary R. Hildebrand, Editor, Harvard University Graduate School of Design; Great American Stables by Richard V.N. Gambril and James C. Mackensie, The Derrydale Press; "Country Life" publication in 1934