The story

Eden Park

Eden Park


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Eden Park is the home of the Cincinnati Art Museum, Cincinnati Art Academy, Playhouse in the Park, Murray Seasongood Pavilion, and the Irwin M. Krohn Conservatory.Created by a series of purchases beginning in 1859, the park was named by Nicholas Longworth who owned a large tract of the property that now constitutes the main portion of the park.Krohn Conservatory was opened to the public in 1933, and rebuilt after extensive storm damage in 1966. It is the third greenhouse in Eden Park.Krohn Conservatory, which is owned and operated by the Park Board, features plants from all over the world exhibited in simulated natural settings. Krohn, Board of Parks Commissioner from 1912 to 1948.Just south of Krohn Conservatory is the Hinkle Magnolia Garden, named for Frederick A. Near the gazebo is the John Rule Deupree Memorial Fountain, given by his family and dedicated in 1987.The park features many statues and memorials including the Galbraith Memorial which was erected in 1923 by the American Legion in honor of its first National Commander, Cincinnati's Frederick W. Galbraith, and a 60-foot memorial flagpole dedicated in 1930, and then relocated to the site of the Vietnam Memorial, and rededicated at the time of the Vietnam Memorial dedication on April 8, 1984.The park is also home to a bronze replica of the Capitoline Wolf which was a gift from the Italian government and presented by the Order of the Sons of Italy in 1931.One unique feature of the park is the five memorial tree plantings, the largest being the Presidential Grove which was started in 1882 and contains a tree planted for each of the Presidents of the United States.Heroes Grove contains oak trees planted in 1876 in memory of the heroes of 1776 and the patriots who were with Washington at Valley Forge. A second Heroes Grove, located south of Eden Park Drive near the Gilbert Avenue entrance, was planted in 1919 by the Mothers of Democracy in memory of Cincinnati men and women who lost their lives in World War I.Pioneers Grove which contains trees planted by the Forestry Society in 1882 in honor of the pioneers of Cincinnati, and Authors Grove round out the five groves.


History

The focal point of this park is the beautifully renovated two-story house with elegant white columns and wrap-around porch, surrounded by moss-draped live oaks and ornamental gardens.

What was once the home of the William Henry Wesley family is now a place of tranquility. Yet 100 years ago, the site was alive with mechanical and human energy. This was the hub of the Wesley Lumber Company, operating from 1890 until after World War I. Company holdings included a sawmill, planner mill and dry kiln, with a dock to facilitate loading barges in Tucker Bayou for shipping lumber.

Wesley built his home near the mill in 1897, and his family lived there until 1953 when his wife, Katie Strickland Wesley, died and the home was sold with 10.5 acres. Ten years later, Lois Maxon fell in love with the place and purchased it, converting the house into a showplace for her family antiques and heirlooms. Ms. Maxon developed the grounds as ornamental gardens, and in 1968 she donated Eden Gardens to the state of Florida.

The staff and volunteers of Eden Gardens take great pride in protecting and preserving this property for future generations by interpreting its history and resources, and maintaining the beautiful azalea and camellia bushes scattered throughout the grounds.


George and Imogene Remus [ edit | edit source ]

George and Imogene met in Chicago, where Imogene was a customer at one of Remus's pharmacies and later became his legal secretary. They were both married at the time. In 1917, Imogene divorced her first husband, Albert Holmes, with whom she had one daughter, Ruth. On March 7, 1919 Remus's first wife, Lillian (with whom he had one daughter, Romola) filed for divorce on the grounds of cruelty and infidelity when it was confirmed that he was not only having an affair with Imogene, but providing housing for her and her daughter. On June 25, 1920, Remus and Imogene were married in Newport, KY.

When Alcohol Prohibition was introduced in January, 1920, George began to notice that many of his criminal clients had become rich and powerful as a result of bootlegging. George used his legal and pharmaceutical knowledge and extensively studied the Volstead Act, finding several loopholes that allowed him to purchase distilleries and pharmacies to sell "bonded" liquor to himself under government licenses for medicinal purposes. Remus's employees would then hijack his own liquor and sell it illegally.

George and Imogene then moved to Cincinnati, where 80 percent of America's bonded whiskey was located, and bought up most of the whiskey manufacturers. In less than three years Remus made $40 million in 1920's dollars (A value of almost $500 million in 2015 American dollars.)

In addition to becoming the "King of the Bootleggers" as he would be known as for a long time, Remus was known as a gracious host. George and Imogene held a New Year's Eve party at their new mansion, nicknamed the Marble Palace, in 1922. The guests included 100 couples from the most prestigious families in the area. As parting gifts, Remus presented all the men with diamond stickpins, and gave each guest's wife a brand new car. In 1923, Remus hosted a birthday party for Imogene in which she appeared in a daring bathing suit along with other aquatic dancers, serenaded by a fifteen-piece orchestra.

In 1925, George Remus was indicted for thousands of violations of the Volstead Act and given a two year federal prison sentence. Before his indictment, however, he had given power of attorney to his wife, Imogene, who he trusted implicitly and transferred all assets to her name. While in prison, Remus befriended another inmate and told him that his wife had control over his money. The inmate was prohibition agent, Franklin Dodge, who was conducting an undercover investigation of the corrupt practices of Albert Sartain, warden of the Atlanta Federal Prison. Dodge resigned his job and started an affair with Imogene. Together, they liquidated Remus' assets, Including the multimillion-dollar distillery empire Remus had built, only giving then-imprisoned Remus $100 (Roughly $1240 of today's dollars) of the sale and hiding the remaining money. Dodge and Imogene also attempted to deport Remus, and when that failed, even hired a hit man to murder Remus for $15,000,which also failed.

After his release in 1927, Imogene Remus filed for divorce. On October 6th, 1927, both Imogene and George were to attend court for the finalization of the divorce. On the way to the courthouse, George was waiting outside Imogene's hotel and following her departure in a cab with her daughter. Remus had his chauffeur follow her cab through town in a wild car chase, ultimately running her cab off the road in Eden Park. Remus exited his vehicle and fatally shot Imogene in the abdomen as she attempted to escape toward the Spring House Gazebo.

George's chauffeur had fled the scene following the murder, so George hitched a ride to the downtown police station and turned himself in for the murder of his wife. George Remus acted as his own lawyer and defended himself as a man driven mad by his wife's adultery, thievery, and betrayal. He was ultimately acquitted in one of the first successful cases of the insanity defense and sentenced to eight months in a mental asylum, after which he attempted to get back into bootlegging but retired soon afterward as the market had been overtaken by gangsters.

Legend has it that the ghost of Imogene Remus haunts the gazebo that she was murdered beside. Since that time, there have been reports of a ghostly woman wearing a black gown standing in and around the gazebo, often seen crying and gazing out over the nearby reflecting pool as Autumn leaves fall.


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Cincinnati Juneteenth Festival

Its literal historical roots are in Texas, but Juneteenth is gaining popularity across the country as an occasion to celebrate one of the most important events in American history- - the end of slavery in America.

Although July 4th. marks the American colonies' 1776 declaration of independence from Britain, the Founding Fathers did not include America's enslaved people among "all men" who had been "created equal."

It took a bloody Civil War and Constitutional amendments to end slavery, and Juneteenth celebrates the Emancipation Proclamation, issued almost a century after the Declaration of Independence. Texas. June 19, 1865

President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, declaring that all enslaved people in the rebellious states were free. It was really military strategy- - the southern states were still fighting as the Confederacy.

While the Proclamation achieved an intended effect of encouraging many enslaved people to flee plantations and join the union forces, it proclaimed the freedom of only those enslaved people held in the Confederacy, which did not recognize Lincoln's authority.

Over two years later, on June 19, 1865, General Gordon Granger landed in Galveston, Texas, leading federal occupation forces some three months after the official end of the Civil War. He immediately proclaimed Texas to be under U.S. authority and re- issued the Emancipation Proclamation.

He could hardly have expected his action to give birth to an annual African American freedom celebration.

June 19th Celebrated as "Juneteenth"

Celebration of June 19 as "Juneteenth" or "Emancipation Day" quickly spread through parts of the southwest, including Texas, Louisiana, and Arkansas.

To the freed people Juneteenth had much greater significance than the Fourth of July and was celebrated with community picnics featuring the reading of the Emancipation Proclamation, feasting, choir singing, prayers, and speeches.

Although the popularity of Juneteenth declined in the 1940's, the traditional celebration has been "re- discovered" in recent decades as an appropriate occasion to remember the legacy of slavery and celebrate emancipation.

In 1980 Texas became the first state to make Juneteenth an official state holiday.

There is a movement to make Juneteenth an official national observance.

What is the African Diaspora?

“The creation of the modern African Diaspora in the Americas is largely the result of a tumultuous period in world history in which Africans were scattered abroad by the pressures of plantation slavery and the ideologies associated with white supremacy. “


Construction During Reconstruction: Eden Park Circumferential Route

The major features of Eden Park emerged, at least in planning form, even before the completion of the reservoir. Apart from heroic efforts at landscaping the Eden Park with broad lawns overlooking the Reservoir, early visions also called for a circumferential path around the grounds, open to carriages and riders on horseback. These drives were to lie within the park, with green space outside separating the recreational paths from the increasing traffic and busyness of the exploding suburbs. Like so much of the history of the Cincinnati Parks and Parkways, this Eden Park circumferential route hung on through radically different administrations and administrative systems. Also like so much else, it was never really all in place at once it left traces, mostly in the form of arched bridges, at many places in the park.

The first segment of the road was the twenty-foot-wide stone carriageway built by the Water Works atop the exposed wall of the reservoir, at the lower left end of the reservoir in an aerial photo from the 1920’s or early ‘30’s. The fifty-five-foot elliptical arches resting on pilasters apparently supporting the road caused great controversy in 1883 when it was disclosed that the Water Works chose to make these embellishments from attractive, longer lasting but more expensive Dayton Limestone rather than from the locally quarried stone used to build the actual reservoir walls concealed by the decorations. (The Dayton Stone certainly has weathered more gracefully than the limestone Elsinore Arch built on Gilbert Avenue at the same time.)

Another arch, resting on pilasters, appeared almost immediately as a bridge to nowhere over the main entrance to the Park from Gilbert Avenue. That entrance road, Eden Park Drive, approached the upper right branch of the reservoir in the picture, and disappears behind the pilastered and arched bridge. Constructed as a segment of the planned circumferential route, the approaches to the bridge were just grassy areas its main purpose seems to have been as an observation deck for the beautiful view over the reservoir, show in a previous post. As it turned out, the bridge was propitiously located for the purposes of a horse-drawn street railway we will encounter in a future post – although it was not high enough to meet the tracks on the Art Museum hill at the left and the hill between the Drive and Morris Street, the northern boundary of the Park at Gilbert.

In 1875, Cincinnati dissolved its Park Board. David Baker, an insurance executive who served as the president of the Cincinnati Board of Public Works in the late 1870’s, came to preside over the Parks as well. He apparently ordered a start to a drive along the edge of the reservoir that got far enough along to erect a formal-looking limestone column chiseled with the still-legible caption “David Baker Pass.” (Some histories, confronted with that legend, have styled Mr. Baker’s last name as “Pass”.) Over time, however, the Parks suffered diminishing resources under the Board of Public Works. Superintendents at the parks, and specialized landscapers and gardeners, were folded in to larger pools of foremen and laborers that mostly worked on the city’s roads and sewers. (A walk up David Baker Pass will now lead up past the Seasongood Pavilion to the Art Museum.)

Reconstituted in 1891, the Park Board at first had to play catch-up on basic maintenance, hiring and training gardeners and foresters mostly to trim back overgrowth. Where the financial troubles of 1873 resulted in cuts to municipal expenditures, a new depression in 1893 inspired a more progressive response: “the unexpected action of the Board of Legislation, appropriating $30,000 from the Contingent Fund by ordinance, to be spent by the Board of Park Commissioners in giving work in the parks, in order to partially relieve the needs of some of the large number of the unemployed” produced a flurry of construction. Roads through arches abounded. Elsinore Gate, the valve house on Gilbert Avenue, came to serve as another entry arch for Eden Park: a road built through it took a quick right turn (now Elsinore Street) and ascended to Mt. Adams. Further grading and construction of retaining walls improved access from the Deer Creek side of Mt. Adams to a road around the Shelter House (now the Playhouse in the Park), although a hoped-for connection to the Baker pass did not materialize.

Another new roadway (now Cliff Drive) wound north from Martin Drive up the crest of the bluff overlooking the River above the current location of the Krohn Conservatory. The pumping station at the reservoir, and the Water Tower at the crest of the hill on the other side of Eden Park Drive, required considerable grading. In 1894 the Park Board set its relief workforce to work cutting a trench through the hill between Cliff Drive and the Water Tower. As the final fillip, the cherry on the ice cream Sunday at the northeast corner of Eden, the Parks contracted with the Melan Arch company to bridge the trench. Melan’s reinforced concrete construction technique had been be developed only a few years earlier in Germany the Eden Park example was the first in Ohio and its 70-foot central span was quite long for the time. The full circumferential route again peters out, although a well-mowed meadow and a stairway both lead down to Fulton Street across Fulton, another stairway leads up to what is now Beethoven Place. Behind a park maintenance building, there is a narrow moved path, reasonably passable in fair weather, past the park offices, to the main Eden Park Drive entrance. Across the drive there is an old stair and a path that leads to the Museum Parking lot.

The aerial photograph also appears as a postcard, which can be found on the wonderful site www.cincinnativiews.net and the card appears as http://www.cincinnativiews.net/images/Reservoir-1.jpg The photograph shown here is on the web at http://mtadamscincy.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/Grapevine-Summer-2018.pdf on p. 17.

On the Dayton Stone contract see The Cincinnati Enquirer (Cincinnati, Ohio), 27 Mar 1871, Page 5. On the controversy, see The Cincinnati Enquirer (Cincinnati, Ohio), 31 Jul 1874, Page 8 and The Cincinnati Enquirer (Cincinnati, Ohio), 14 Jul 1874, Page 8. For a more general description of the road and the arches, see Cincinnati a guide to the queen city and its neighbors. Compiled by workers of the Writer’s program of the Work projects administration in the state of Ohio. Sponsored by the city of Cincinnati, Ohio. p 271.

On a proposal in 1875 to build an avenue over the bridge at the park entrance, see The Cincinnati Daily Star (Cincinnati, Ohio), 15 Sep 1875, Page 2

On the dissolution of the Park Board in 1875 and its reconstitution in 1891 see the Annual Report of the Park Board for 1891, pp. 5-10.

On Baker, see King’s Pocket-Book of Cincinnati, p. 29 Moses King, Shillito & Company, 1879 – Cincinnati (Ohio)

A modern photo of the “David Baker Pass” column accurately depicts the weathered nature of the text. The column in the Park forms a neat bookend with the stone column marking the intersection of “Baker Place” on Madison Road just west of O’Bryonville.

On the Contingent Fund in 1893-94, see the Annual Report of the Park Department for 1893, pp. 24-25

On the construction in Mt Adams see Annual Report of the Park Department for 1894, pp. 4-6

On the Melan Arch Bridge see Annual Report of the Park Department for 1894 p. 4 the photograph appeared in the Annual Report of the Park Department for 1895. The plate is between pages 4 and 5.


Construction during Reconstruction: Eden Park Reservoir Walls

Cincinnati’s topography, with the original city in the river basin expanding to increasing elevations up the surrounding hills, presented a problem for the design of water supplies. The Queen City actually had a municipal water supply from the 1830’s, quite a progressive public service. The most basic principle of hydraulic engineering is that water flows down hill, but the Ohio River afforded the only source of water sufficient for a city with tens of thousands, indeed by the time the reservoir was finished, hundreds of thousands of occupants. The municipal supply therefore had to pump water up to a reservoir above the residents, in order for it to flow down into their houses and businesses. Before the Civil War that goal could be accomplished with an open stone tank on Third Street, at the base of Mt. Adams. The city’s expansion into the Over the Rhine neighborhood beginning in the 1850’s nearly reached the level of the reservoir. Moreover, with a capacity of 5 million gallons, the reservoir held less than a single day’s supply of water, leaving no room for failure of the pumps.

With the end of the Civil War in 1865, water distribution in Cincinnati reached crisis proportions. Flushed with victory, the whole of the North launched a public works extravaganza. Cincinnati rushed headlong into the frenzy. Nicolas Longworth’s Walnut Hills vineyard, which he called the Garden of Eden, had failed. A combination of grape blights, Civil War manpower requirements, and Longworth’s death in 1863 put an end to the production of Golden Wedding Champaign and Catawba Wines. The land was covered with brush and didn’t have any obvious useful purpose. Col. Adolphus Eberhardt Jones arranged for the city to purchase the Garden from the Longworth estate, setting aside a steep ravine as the site for a new reservoir (a counter-intuitive notion), and the rest of the property as a vast public park. The price of $3000 per acre represented the first of the bonus deals for Joseph Longworth, son, heir and executor of Nicolas Longworth. The site had one tremendous advantage for a Cincinnati reservoir: high above all developed and developing land in the river basin, water stored in the Garden of Eden would flow down, with tremendous pressure, to the whole city.

Joseph Earnshaw, Cincinnati City Engineer for a few years in the 1850’s, had later designed and supervised the construction of a water works for a large Union Army camp in Kentucky. He took charge of the Eden Park Reservoir in 1866, first opening a quarry at the east end of the Park. The reservoir was built in two sections, holding a total of a hundred million gallons of water. This design allowed for the draining of either section for maintenance and cleaning. Even standing next to the ruins of the lower wall for the reservoir it is difficult to comprehend the immensity of the project: “The wall is 48 ½ feet at the base and 120 feet in height. Its least width is 18 ½ feet … The extreme length of the wall is 1251 feet, and contains about 76,000 perches of stone.” (A perch is enough stone to lay a course a foot deep and a half a yard wide across a distance of one rod – fortunately, for our comprehension, just about a cubic yard.) Those 76,000 perches of stone came from a limestone hill above Kemper Lane. The abandoned quarry was later developed as the Twin Lakes Overlook, one of the most beloved features of Eden Park.

What is not visible at the ruins is the fact that the 120-foot high wall is mostly underground! To prevent it from sliding or toppling down the ravine, the engineers piled the back side of the wall with 50 feet of waste rock and earth as well as 75 feet of fill under the bottom of the reservoir. Before the backfill, the wall was not as high as the steeples going up on Walnut Hills Churches – but higher than their sanctuary roof lines. Beneath the wall the site was honeycombed with sewers between two and six feet across. The surface of the reservoirs covered about 14 acres with water twenty-five feet deep.


The ghost of Eden Park is 'definitely out there' 90 years after she was murdered

A sketch of Imogene Remus, wife of "Bootleg King" George Remus. George Remus shot her to death in Eden Park on Oct. 6, 1927. In a sensational trial that received national attention, Remus, who acted as his own attorney, was found not guilty by reason of insanity. (Photo: Enquirer file)

Imogene Remus couldn't be reached for comment Tuesday night. This is her story, and we tried everything we knew to get in touch, but our efforts to get her thoughts were met with only the rustle of leaves.

Of course, she's been dead for 90 years but there are those who think she's still available for interviews.

The Enquirer sent this breaking news reporter to Eden Park to investigate rumors that the gazebo is haunted. Echoes of music from 1927 filled the Spring House Gazebo and we asked if Imogene was there, but no ghost appeared.

But without proper ghost-hunting equipment, who's to say spiritual activity wasn't happening? Maybe she didn't like the songs we played?

Ninety years ago, Imogene Remus was gunned down in Eden Park by her husband, "Bootleg King" George Remus. Her husband finally had enough of her (despite serving three years locked up in various cells) and divorce wasn't going to be enough.

George Remus, "King of the Bootleggers," was acquitted of the murder of his wife, Imogene. (Photo: The Enquirer/Ray Albert)

"The much-tangled domestic affairs of George Remus, once multi-millionaire bootleg king of Cincinnati, came to a sudden – and dramatic – climax yesterday," The Enquirer wrote on Oct. 7, 1927.

The day their divorce was to be finalized, George and his chauffeur followed Imogene's cab through Walnut Hills in a Hollywood-style chase. As the cab driver tried to get away, the Buick with George inside slammed into the back of it.

Imogene, dressed head to toe in black to mourn the loss of her marriage, scrambled from the cab and tried to run. George ran after her, grabbed her by the wrist, pressed his pearl-handled revolver against her abdomen and fired one shot that hit nearly all her vital organs.

Her daughter Ruth ran out of the car and tried to stop him from firing again. Imogene was taken to a hospital by a witness and died two hours later.

"I am now at peace after two years of hell. I'm satisfied I've done right," he told reporters at the jail after he turned himself in.

George Remus defended himself in court claiming temporary insanity. A jury found him not guilty and rumor has it that some jury members were bribed.

If the rumors are true and Imogene does haunt the park, it's no wonder. It would seem she has some regrets or revenge to mull over.

The stories go like this - a woman in a black dress and black hat seems to be in distress or just observing nearby Mirror Lake. She can be as real as any person or just appear as a shadow. Then she disappears, as ghosts are known to do.

Dan Smith, owner and operator of Haunted Cincinnati Tours, said over the past 10 years tour groups have seen plenty of activity at Eden Park.

"People have gotten a lot of weird photos," Smith said. "She's definitely out there."

Smith said more often than not there's activity during tours. He said when questions are asked, the lights of their instruments turn on, possibly indicating the presence of a spirit.

One of George Remus' lavish dinner parties at his Price Hill home. Remus is seated with his wife, Imogene, standing to his right, and his daughter with her arm on Remus' shoulder. Guests were usually given copies of the dinner party photos. (Photo: Provided/The Delhi Historical Society)

A troubled relationship leads to murder

According to Enquirer archives, George and Imogene met in Chicago while he was a criminal lawyer. The couple, who married in 1920, then made their way to Cincinnati and George began his bootlegging business.

In just four years, he sold an estimated 3 million gallons of whiskey. When his luck finally ran out, he served time in an Atlanta penitentiary.

In early September 1925, Imogene filed for divorce alleging that Geroge had been guilty of "extreme cruelty" on a number of occasions. He was due to be released from the penitentiary after a two-year sentence, then serve a year in prison in the Cincinnati area.

The Enquirer reported he told her to file for divorce after calling her "vile and unmentionable names" when she visited him in Atlanta. Imogene also asked for a restraining order.

During the murder trial, Imogene's daughter Ruth testified against George. The prosecution also presented a note written by Imogene to a family member about the divorce hearing only two days before the shooting.

"Go to Ruth at once if they hurt me. I am brave and realize the evidence is important," Imogene wrote.

George countered the divorce with charges that Imogene and Franklin Dodge, a prohibition agent, were carrying on "an illicit love affair" and conspiring to kill and defraud him.

All of this is what George said caused his temporary insanity that led to him killing his wife.

In December 1927, three months after the murder, the jury found Remus not guilty.

Imogene's remains were sent back to her family in Chicago.

"Last rites were omitted and the burial was as secret and mysterious as was the arrival of the body in Chicago from Cincinnati," The Enquirer reported.

After that, there's not much more in the Enquirer archives about "that Remus woman."

As for Imogene's ghost, curious parties should visit the Eden Park gazebo within the park's hours of operation, or risk trespassing charges.

"It's creepier than any ghost story because it really happened," Smith said. "This is some history that really happened. These stories from history are our best guess as to why this is happening."


The Fascinating History of Eden Gardens State Park

When you first step foot onto the 163 acres of Eden Gardens State Park, you feel as if you’re being transported back in time – back to an era where hoop skirts, oil paintings, and Victorian-style architecture decorated a land rich with opportunity.

Today, that can be felt beneath the surrounding shade of Spanish moss-draped oak trees, the salty air of Choctawhatchee Bay, and the unique history of this Florida Panhandle treasure.

It first began with the Euchee Indians. Led by Sam Story (aka Timpoochee Kinnard), the tribe’s days revolved around fishing, hunting, and learning different ways to properly live off the land. When European settlers arrived, they taught the newcomers the same before being driven out to discover new land.

The Wesley House. Photo Credit: Dana Haynes

In the 1890s, a man by the name of William Henry Wesley purchased the land for his family and his wife Katie Strickland. A few years later, they built what would later become known as the Wesley House. The rest of the property would serve as the hub of their lumber company, which operated from 1890 until after World War I. Remnants of the lumber mill can still be seen from the shores of Tucker Bayou. The family lived there until Mrs. Wesley’s passing in 1953. Out of the seven surviving children, none wanted the house, so it was sold, along with 10.5 acres.


Mount Adams :: History

Mount Adams is perched high above downtown and the Ohio River valley, and is referred to locally as "the Hill." It was originally named Mount Ida, after Ida Martin, a woman who, according to legend, lived in the hollow of an old sycamore tree.

In the early 1800s, land in the Mount Adams area was owned by Nicholas Longworth, a lawyer and a businessman who cultivated Catawba grapes there in his vineyard. He was famous for his Golden Wedding champagne. He donated a portion of a southern-facing hill to the Cincinnati Astronomical Society to increase his property value. In 1843, President John Quincy Adams delivered the dedication address for the Observatory, which had at that time the most powerful telescope of its kind. The name Mount Ida was swiftly changed to Mount Adams to honor the president. In 1871 the Observatory was moved to Mt Lookout, and the site became the Holy Cross Monastery, which closed in 1977. The property is now an office complex.

The Pilgrimmage of the Holy Cross is a long-standing annual tradition on Good Friday, whereby devout pilgrims climb up the steep hill from Columbia Parkway to the Church of the Immaculate Conception, praying on each step.

Mount Adams is surrounded by Eden Park on three sides. The park's land was purchased beginning in 1859 and was designated as a water collection area for the city, but the advantage of giving the land a dual purpose by using it as a park was soon recognized. Disease had wiped out Nicholas Longworth's vineyard in the late 1850s, so his son negotiated with the city to allow the use of some of the land for Eden Park (Longworth had lovingly named it after the Garden of Eden). A 172-foot high water tower was completed in 1894.

Because of its view of the river valley, Mount Adams played a role in the city's defense against the Confederate Army during the Civil War. Two artillery emplacements were installed, one at Fort View Place, the other at the playground near what is now Playhouse in the Park. Neither gun was ever fired.

In the mid-19th century, many German and Irish immigrants settled on Mount Adams, building their homes, which had to conform to the steep topography, from wood and stone quarried nearby.

In 1872, the Mount Adams Incline was completed and connected hilltop residents with downtown. The Incline moved passengers, vehicles, and streetcars. This allowed the streetcar to extend its line at the top of the hill, and both the Incline and the streetcar helped to develop the barren hilltops. The ride to the top promised dining, drinks and dancing at the well-known Highland House, located where the Highland Towers now stands. At the time that the Incline closed in 1948, it was considered the city's biggest tourist attraction.

The arts also flourished in Mount Adams. Founded in 1881 and completed in 1886 in Eden Park, the Cincinnati Art Museum was the first purpose-built art museum west of the Alleghenies. In 1892, Maria Longworth, the daughter of Nicholas Longworth, moved her Rookwood Pottery factory to Mount Adams. Her pottery is famous for its unique ceramic finish and is a valuable collectible. More recently, Cincinnati's Playhouse in the Park opened in Eden Park in 1960. This regional theater maintains a national as well as a local reputation for excellence.

Krohn Conservatory, one of the city's major tourist attractions, opened in Eden Park in 1933.

In the 1960s the Hill began to flourish as more downtown workers were attracted to living near their work. Additionally, Mount Adams in the late 60s and early 70s became home to a thriving entertainment scene and was populated by many artists and performers. Its reputation for being "hip" was established.


The History of Eden Park

Eden Park Garden Centre has been in the Bartholomew family since 1939, starting with founder Ernie Bartholomew and his wife, Sheila. In the earlier days, along with their five sons - David, John, Peter, Paul and Stuart - the family worked together in running the family business. The site was originally a show ground for landscape gardeners and within a few years they had turned it into a nursery and subsequently expanding it into a garden centre in the 1970's.

Ernie was an estate gardener. He worked for various different dignitaries throughout his life including, Lady Weardale and His Grace the Duke of Northumberland, he then went off to war and on his return he continued his trade in gardening but also moved into landscaping. In 1948 he rented the garden centre site from British Rail where he had a show garden displayed, with a board advertising his services. Whilst working on a landscaping job Ernie was given a greenhouse which he then re-erected on site, and so Eden Park Nurseries was born. In the early days Tony’s Great Grandfather, who lived in a caravan across the road would come over to stoke the boilers throughout the night to ensure the temperature remained constant for the sapling plants.

Tony's Grandmother was an active member of the Chamber of Commerce and organised many events through British Rail to help expand the business, she was the backbone of the business and ensured it’s current success with all her efforts.

As the nursery began to grow, the family business also successfully diversified into turf, purchasing a depot in Tunstall, near Sittingbourne in the 1970's and manufacturing John Innes Compost. As this business grew, so did the volume and status of its customers, with the family going on to supply turf for Hyde Park. For over 30 years the legacy remained as Tony’s grandfather was pictured on the bags of John Innes Compost.

In April of 1985, the family purchased the land from British Rail and with this came more expansion. The first shop had been built in the early 1970's and was not large enough to cater for the ever increasing volume of customers, and so the shop was extended. We have included some references below from the early days of the business which gives an idea of the deep rooted high level of service that you can expect from us.

Tony's son Tom is now involved in the business.

1925 letter from The Right Honourable Lady Weardale, "conducted himself to her entire satisfaction, these are extensive gardens and when he worked here in the pleasure grounds, kitchen gardens, fruit and plant houses he is strictly honest and willing and a good worker."

David Bartholomew - 1932 - 2016

1927 Left Albury Park Gardens, Guildford, letter signed by head gardener to His Grace the Duke of Northumberland
"Worked in the garden two years as an improver inside and out and during that time always tried to give satisfaction, he is leaving on his request to gain further experience."

1931 Head Gardener, The Earl of Carnavron, Highclere Castle
"Employed as first journeyman, he has thorough knowledge of general garden management where early forcing is a feature of such subjects instances peaches, nectarine, melons, figs, strawberries, cherries etc, the general flora and greenhouse plants inc carnations and chrysalemums. He is strictly thorough, honest, industrious, civil and obeyed. He is seeking a change to advance his position in life with my many good wishes for his future success."


Watch the video: Presentazione Hotel Eden Park (June 2022).


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