Central Park in Our Own Backyard


Out of all the lovely scenes Columbus has to offer, the Bradley-Olmsted Garden is definitely one of its best kept secrets! Nestled on the top of the hill on Wynnton Rd. behind the Columbus Museum, this garden is a cross between a mini Callaway Gardens along with natural elements and history connected to Central Park!

In my search for someone to interview who had connections to these gardens, Master Gardener Joyce Fowler became the obvious candidate! She has a great love and knowledge for the gardens as well as  a desire to keep the outdoor spaces of Columbus from becoming a thing of the past. Not too privy to being in photos herself, she asked that I focus on the beautiful landscape and scenery as she talked with me about how the gardens came to be.

So, you may be asking what connection does our Bradley-Olmsted Garden have to Central Park? Years ago a fellow by the name of Frederick Law Olmsted toured Europe as well as the South observing landscapes and farming techniques during his time as a  correspondent journalist for the New York Times. His love for landscaping brought him to found the Olmsted and Olmsted Firm under which his sons and many other employees completed many landscaping jobs including that of the Biltmore in North Carolina. During the 1850’s his literary connections helped him gain the position of Superintendent of Central Park where Olmsted crafted his vision for the rolling hills, bridges and lakes to provide an oasis for the ever cramped citizens of New York city. Years later, a worker at Olmsted and Olmsted, W.B. Marquis was called upon by Mr. Brick Miller, owner of the property where now sits the Columbus Museum. Over many years, and the property’s changing of ownership to W.C. Bradley in 1925, W.B. Marquis incorporated many hallmarks of Olmsteds’ designs such as planned sequential experiences, spacial elements of wood and water, using vistas as an organizing element.

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By Christina