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House of the Four Winds, 1930s, 2012-2013

Garden restoration:
Bergmann, Craig K.
Landscape architect:
Nichols, Rose Standish
Architect of house:
Shaw, Howard Van Doren
Former owner:
McBirney, Hugh J. Mrs
Coffey, Jack C.
Coffey, Jack C. Mrs.
Provenance:
Garden Guild of Winnetka
Physical description:
1 folder+ 7 digital prints, 21 digital images + 3 lantern slides
Type:
Mixed archival materials
Place:
United States of America, Illinois, Lake, Lake Forest
Illinois
Lake Forest
House of the Four Winds (Lake Forest, Illinois)
Date:
1930
1930-2013
1930s, 2012-2013
Notes:
The garden at the House of the Four Winds was originally designed circa 1908 by architect Howard Van Doren Shaw and planted the following year by landscape architect Rose Standish Nichols. At that time the property comprised 5.29 acres and was a summer home sited to catch breezes off Lake Michigan. The hardscape designed by Shaw included two long pools or rills on different levels on the longitudinal axis from the house to the exedra and small fountains at the rear of the property. Stone benches and low walls were included in the hard scape design as well as an arched stone and wrought iron gateway. Shaw was said to be inspired by the Generalife Gardens at the Alhambra in Spain, and included water jets in the rills for spray. Rose Standish Nichols designed the formal garden borders in the upper and lower pool gardens as well as another formal side garden to the east. The property was subdivided in 1955, and House of the Four Winds currently comprises almost two acres.
The garden nearly was lost for 50 years until bits of the original hardscape were noticed, which led to the excavation of the two long pools and a complete renovation of blue stone walkways. Trees that had grown over and shaded the formal flower beds were removed. Hornbeam, yew and boxwood hedges and grass walkways outline the redesigned perennial flower beds, limited in color to purples, blues, pinks and whites at the owners' request. A tall boxwood hedge in the upper pool garden is clipped into an undulating shape, while other boxwood are clipped into conical or spherical shapes. There are planted containers at the exedra and near the house, original statues and fountains as well as original stone benches.
This garden was featured in the Garden Conservancy's Open Days directory in 2009.
Persons associated with the garden include Mr. and Mrs. Hugh Johnston McBirney (former owners, 1909-1954); Isabel M. Stimson (former owner, 1954-1955); Mr. and Mrs. Harry N. Bryant (former owners, 1955); Mr. and Mrs. Jack C. Coffey (former owners, 1955-1959); Mr. and Mrs. Charles Wolcott Henry, Jr. (former owners, 1959-1972); Nancy Cummings Henry (former owner, 1972-1974); Howard Van Doren Shaw (architect of house and garden hard scape, 1908); Rose Standish Nichols (landscape architect, 1909-1911); Craig Bergmann (garden restoration, circa 2000 - 2002)
Summary:
The folder includes worksheets and an article.
Publications:
This property is featured in "Buried Treasure" by Kathy Kaplan, published in the Chicago Tribune Magazine, May 9, 2010
Topic:
Gardens
Local number:
IL009000
Data Source:
Archives of American Gardens

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