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1924 and 1937 garden redeveloped, Wheelwright and Stevenson

Robert Wheelwright, noted landscape architect who designed the Goodstay gardens, later married Ellen du Pont and lived here. Young Howard Pyle had played on a big rock by the wall of what he recalled as “such a garden as you would hardly find outside of a story book”; Wheelwright retained the ancient, four-square plan and old shrubs in fashioning a new knot garden like those of the Tudor period. A Garden Club of Wilmington pamphlet said in 1938, “Mrs. Wheelwright's garden belonged to her grandmother and she has kept all the charm of its age.” The year before, her husband had added a cutting garden plus Magnolia Walk (redone 1997), terminating in a pool with an Aristide Maillol bronze sculpture, Venus. Wheelwright later designed the 102-acre Valley Garden on Campbell Road, Wilmington, making use of plants rescued from the flooding of adjacent Hoopes Reservoir (CH33). Ellen Wheelwright gave Valley Garden to the public in 1943, and, in 2003, the state expanded it. She was preservationminded—saving the Howard Pyle Studios (WL81) in 1950—and upon her death, she willed Goodstay to the University of Delaware, which opened it as an educational facility in 1969.

Writing Credits

W. Barksdale Maynard


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W. Barksdale Maynard, "Garden", [Wilmington, Delaware], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Delaware

Buildings of Delaware, W. Barksdale Maynard. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2008, 74-74.

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