Genius of Place: The Life of Frederick Law Olmsted

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Da Capo Press, May 31, 2011 - Biography & Autobiography - 496 pages
3 Reviews
Frederick Law Olmsted is arguably the most important historical figure that the average American knows the least about. Best remembered for his landscape architecture, from New York's Central Park to Boston's Emerald Necklace to Stanford University's campus, Olmsted was also an influential journalist, early voice for the environment, and abolitionist credited with helping dissuade England from joining the South in the Civil War. This momentous career was shadowed by a tragic personal life, also fully portrayed here.

Most of all, he was a social reformer. He didn't simply create places that were beautiful in the abstract. An awesome and timeless intent stands behind Olmsted's designs, allowing his work to survive to the present day. With our urgent need to revitalize cities and a widespread yearning for green space, his work is more relevant now than it was during his lifetime. Justin Martin restores Olmsted to his rightful place in the pantheon of great Americans.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - bogopea - LibraryThing

Amazing story of the life of a remarkable man. First, Martin is masterful as an author and researcher and his writing style makes one want to keep on reading. Olmstead, was a remarkable man, not just ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Dlmcgow - LibraryThing

Fascinating. Since I live in a part of the country surrounded by Olmsted's work, I was eager to read this book. I was struck by the diversity and background of Olmsted that was presented in the book ... Read full review

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About the author (2011)

Justin Martin, author of highly praised biographies of Alan Greenspan and Ralph Nader, lives in Forest Hills Gardens, New York, an enclave of New York City designed by Olmsted's son.

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