Frederick Law Olmstead:
Passages in the Life of an Unpractical Man
Wednesday, April 15, 2015

1895 portrait of Frederick Law Olmstead by John Singer Sargent. Original in Biltmore Estate, Asheville, NC

1895 portrait of Frederick Law Olmstead by John Singer Sargent. Original in Biltmore Estate, Asheville, NC

OlmstedPlayWrightFrederick Law Olmsted (1822–1903) had a multi-faceted career as a journalist and critic of slavery; as an appointee of Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War; and as the landscape architect for Boston’s Emerald Necklace, New York City’s Central Park, and the U.S. Capitol grounds among many other treasures. Olmstead was a key pioneer in the movement to preserve land as national parkland, both at Yosemite and Niagara Falls. His life story from “vagabond” to dry goods salesman, farmer, traveler, journalist, author, publisher, executive, and finally to becoming the “father” of landscape architecture in America is an inspiring historical tale.

Gerry Wright has researched, written, and produced this one-man show honoring Olmsted’s life and work and providing insights into his passionate vision. Passages in the Life of an Unpractical Man has toured venues from the Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site in Brookline, Massachusetts to the New Horizons Project in Vologda, Russia. Gerry Wright has been immersed in the work of conservation and human service for 50 years and has received numerous awards for his projects in community service and international communication. He is founder and president of the Friends of Jamaica Pond and has been portraying Frederick Law Olmsted since 2003. He holds a BS from the forestry school at the University of Maine and an MS in wildlife conservation from Cornell University. Further graduate studies include philosophy, theology, sociology, psychology, and clinical counseling at BU and Harvard University.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015, 7:30 pm
Assembly Room, Belmont Public Library
336 Concord Avenue, Belmont, Massachusetts
Free and open to the public
Refreshments will be served.

Future Event

  • Wednesday, May 20, 2015, 7:00 – 9:00 pm: Viktoria Haase, Belmont Historical Society Curator, will present a special program commemorating the 50th anniversary of the rejuvenation of the Society.

Check this page for more information about this program as the date approaches.