1890s

Design Central Park in NYC

Frederick Law Olmsted, Sr, and Calvert Vaux selected in 1858 to design Central Park in NYC, the first urban park in America designed for that purpose. Landscape architecture in America did not exist as an art and a science before Olmsted.

Frederick Law Olmsted & Sons Selected

Frederick Law Olmsted & Sons selected on October 8, 1888 for three years of service at $5,000.

Seneca Park Bridge Opened

Seneca Park Bridge (now Driving Park Bridge) opened, connecting Maplewood and Seneca Parks.

Rochester Board of Park Commissioners Created

Rochester Board of Park Commissioners created April 27, 1888. Rochester is one of only 4 US cities with Park Systems. Buffalo (1868), Boston (1875), and Louisville (1891) have the other 3 Systems. Systems were designed for individual parks to be “in dialogue” with one another, with boulevards and parkways to connect them.

Highland Park Opened

Highland Park opened in 1890-the result of an Olmsted, Ellwanger, and Barry collaboration. Olmsted designed around the Mt. Hope Reservoir, which was already there.

Parkway Design

Parkway was designed to encircle the city and connect the parks. Seneca Parkway was the only section of this original design ever completed.

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1900 – 1950

Alexander Lamberton Became President

In 1901 Alexander Lamberton became President of the Chamber of Commerce, and was President of the Board of Park Commissioners from 1902-1918.

Seneca Park Zoo

Seneca Park Zoo had been sponsored in the early years by Commissioner William Bausch. In 1902, permanent shelters were erected for 150 animals. A large flying cage for 300 birds was built a few years later.

Collection of New York State Animals Created

Gifts from Lamberton and friends of the park created a collection of New York State animals located in a natural setting of a wild ravine in Seneca Park in 1903.

Maple Grove Picnic Grounds Acquired

Maple Grove picnic grounds were acquired by the City and combined with Seneca Park West in 1904.

Cobb’s Hill Park

George Eastman gift as nucleus for Cobb’s Hill Park in 1905.

Maplewood Park

Maplewood Park and acquisition of Maple Grove. Houses removed from Lake Avenue to develop Olmsted’s design of rolling landscape and mature trees in 1909.

Edgerton Park Formed

Edgerton Park formed, with swimming pool and playground.

1006 Acres

Combined parks in Rochester contained 1006 acres in 1915.

631 Acres

In 1902 the combined parks contained 631 acres.

Frederick Law Olmsted Passed Away

FLO, Sr. passed away on August 28, 1903.

Theodore Dossenbach

Theodore Dossenbach officially became the Park Band in 1903.

Seneca Park West Renamed

Seneca Park West renamed as Maplewood Park in 1904.

Henry Durand and George Eastman Gift

Henry Durand and George Eastman gift of 484 acres bordering Lake Ontario, with 4000 foot beach.

H.G. Warner Estate Acquired

H.G. Warner estate acquired adjacent to Highland Park in 1907.

Brunner-Olmsted Plan

Brunner-Olmsted Plan presented to City of Rochester, culminating two decades of work designing small parks, squares, and roadways in the City in 1911.

Lamberton Conservatory Built

Lamberton Conservatory built in 1911.

Rochester Rose Society

John Dunbar: First President of Rochester Rose Society in 1915.

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1950 – 2000

Maplewood Rose Garden Opened

Maplewood Rose Garden opened on June 24, 1951.

Children’s Pavilion

Children’s Pavilion at Highland Park destroyed due to lack of maintenance during the 1960s.

First Rose Day Event

First Rose Day Event at Maplewood Park on June 22, 1952.

Maplewood Designated a Historic District

Maplewood is designated a Historic District and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places on 12/8/1997

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2000 – Present

National Register of Historic Places Designation

Seneca Park East and West are designated and listed in the National Register of Historic Places on September 26, 2003.