This is a photograph of my mother and sister at Green-Wood cemetery in Brooklyn. Green-wood, part of the “rural cemetary” movement, was a popular destination for 19th century New Yorkers seeking respite from the city. It inspired Landscape Architect Andrew Jackson Downing to start advocating for a New York park. This was the genesis of Central Park. Downing thought it unseemly that Victorian families would be picknicking and enjoying themselves amongst the dead. I recently read a “yelp” review of Green-wood, where, over 100 years later, a user was complaining about the exact same thing.
Green-wood isn’t nearly as popular as it was in the 19th century, but I find it far superior to the parks it inspired. It’s my favorite place in the entire city. It recently attained arobretum status and offers sweeping views of New York harbor. I can spend hours walking around its 478 acres with scarcely another human in sight.
2 thoughts on “Day 13”
Confession: I’ve never been drawn to NYC. I visited once or twice and the weight of all those people and the constant, overwhelming lack of space for…well, space was something I couldn’t imagine being able to deal with for longer than a day or two.
But somehow you keep managing to find that space on a regular basis and make it seem navigable. And 478 acres of trees and gravestones and echoes of happy family picnics long lost to history is a place I’d definitely love to visit in the someday.
Thanks for sharing it.
You’re welcome! Thanks for the comment. NYC has a lot to recommend it. Mainly, that so many people have found a way to live literally on top of each other in a sustainable way. I know that eventually I’ll find my way back to the suburbs and part of me will be sorry, and part relieved, that I’m not in NYC. Anyway you should come visit (or come back), and if you do, make sure to visit Green-Wood.