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Catalog Data

Lewis & Valentine Company  Search this
Farrand, Beatrix, 1872-1959 (landscape designer)  Search this
Blue, Frances (provenance)  Search this
Landscape designer:
Olmsted Brothers  Search this
Former owner:
Eastern Military Academy  Search this
Kahn, Otto Hermann, 1867-1934  Search this
Melius, Gary  Search this
Delano & Aldrich  Search this
Collection Creator:
McFarland, J. Horace (John Horace), 1859-1948  Search this
American Rose Society  Search this
Archival materials
Oheka (Huntington, New York)
United States of America -- New York -- Suffolk County -- Huntington
Scope and Contents note:
The folder includes worksheets and photocopies of articles.
General note:
Oheka was the grandest estate of its time in Cold Spring Harbor on Long Island's North Shore, styled after French farmhouses but with 126 rooms. The house was designed by architects William Adams Delano and Chester Holmes Aldrich in circa 1921. In 1917 the Olmsted Brothers planned the grounds of the 443-acre estate, which included the entrance drive bordered by red cedars, the golf course, and extensive bridle paths. It took two years to move the earth and build up a rise on which the house was sited. A distinctive parterre in front of the house was comprised of eight reflecting pools to show the changing sky and surrounding mountains, with grass borders. In 1919 Adele Wolff Kahn commissioned Beatrix Farrand to design more intimate spaces, including a Dutch garden, an octagonal garden, a rose garden and a water garden. The formal Dutch garden enclosed by vine-covered brick walls displayed tulips and flowering trees in the spring, in parterre beds separated by brick walks laid out in a herringbone pattern. The octagonal fragrance garden featured yellow and purple pansies followed in summer by lavender, nepeta and pink carnations. Farrand's designs were formal and highly detailed to the extent that each week's blooms could be anticipated.
Garden features included greenhouses, an orangery, a croquet lawn, stables, pools and tennis courts. Courtyards at the house featured single mature trees supplied by the Long Island nursery, Lewis & Valentine. The estate was too costly to maintain and the gardens were destroyed in 1948. A partial restoration and conversion to a hotel in the 1980s reinstalled the Olmsted Brothers landscape designs but not Farrand's.
Persons associated with the garden include Otto H. Kahn and Adele Wolff Kahn (former owners, 1914-circa 1934); Eastern military Academy (former owner), Gary Melius (former owner), Olmsted Brothers (landscape architects, circa 1917); Beatrix Farrand (landscape designer, 1919-1928); Lewis & Valentine (nurserymen, circa 1928); William Adams Delano & Chester Holmes Aldrich (architects).
Related Archival Materials note:
Other archival materials related to Oheka are located at the Environmental Design Archives at the University of California at Berkeley, Huntington Historical Society in Huntington, New York, the Nassau County Reference Library
See others in:
Garden Club of America Collection, ca. 1920-[ongoing].
Related Materials:
Records related to this site can be found at the Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site, Olmsted Job Number 06499, Otto H. Kahn.
Collection Restrictions:
Access to original images by appointment only. Researcher must submit request for appointment in writing. Certain items may be restricted and not available to researchers. Please direct reference inquiries to the Archives of American Gardens:
Collection Rights:
For information or study purposes only. Use or copyright restrictions may exist. All requests for duplication and use must be submitted in writing and approved by Archives of American Gardens.
Gardens -- New York -- Huntington  Search this
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution, Archives of American Gardens, J. Horace McFarland Company Collection.
AAG.MCF, File NY170
See more items in:
J. Horace McFarland Company collection
J. Horace McFarland Company collection / Series 1: Garden Images / United States / New York
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Gardens