Thornden Park (Syracuse, NY)
Thornden Park, Syracuse, NY 13210
Romance and tragedy marked the beginnings of this pleasure ground park. The Haskins family purchased 76 acres of prime farmland in 1854 to serve as their their home until tragic and untimely death struck the family. In 1873 the property was acquired by Major Alexander Davis whose gardener planted a wide variety of shrubs such as lilacs and rhododendrons. Specimen trees were planted in groves, and extensive perennial plantings were complemented by sunken formal gardens. In 1921 the City of Syracuse purchased the estate and dedicated it as parkland; it was described as a "park ready-made - a mature landscape of informal groves and picturesque water features and land forms." In 1923 the beautiful E.M. Mills Rose Garden was constructed, which heralded the advent of much activity - a pool was installed, the amphitheater built, and a pinetum and herb garden established. Adjacent to the rose garden is an annual and perennial garden with an attractive lily pond and waterfall. At the top of the historically landscaped park, one can watch a magnificent sunset overlooking Onondaga Lake.
The park is adjoined by Ostrom Avenue, Madison Street, and South Beech Street. The amphitheater is in the center of the park, to the east of the tennis courts.
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