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Jacob Weidenmann: Pioneer Landscape Architect

Jacob Weidenmann: Pioneer Landscape Architect
Rudy J. Favretti
Cedar Hills Cemetery Foundation (distributed by Wesleyan University Press, Middletown, Conn.)
Publication Date: 

cloth, 192 pp., $49.95

A remarkable, yet forgotten, pioneer landscape architect, Jacob Weidenmann (1829–93), deserves greater public recognition for his influence on the American landscape. Highly respected by such peers as Frederick Law Olmsted, Calvert Vaux, and H.W.S. Cleveland for his knowledge, artistry, and skills in all phases of design work, Weidenmann led the way in cemetery design, developing the "open lawn" form of interment in the rural cemetery movement. His work in the design and establishment of public parks, capitol grounds, and residential property, was on the leading edge of landscape architecture. He also set the educational standards for these professionals, and his book, Beautifying Country Homes, was a practical guide on the subject. Among the earliest of its kind, the text and illustrations provided solutions for common problems of homeowners. Landscape architecture historian Rudy Favretti should be congratulated for his meticulous research and sensitive narrative of this highly recommended biography that captures the challenges of pioneers in this field.

— Marilyn K. Alaimo, garden writer and volunteer, Chicago Botanic Garden