Dedicated to the preservation of Long Island's 'gold coast' estates and other things old.
"I am Ozymandias...."
Magnus, too funny.
I notice in the NYT article from 1996, regarding subdivision plans, that there was talk of leaving the balustraded platform of the mansion as a feature.hahahahahahahahaha. I wonder how many minutes that idea lasted? Poor Long Island seems to be the capital of 'Plow Under All Surviving Spots of Interest' when it comes to subdivision (Spring Hill aside)
'Ozymandias' ( Ramesses )by Percy Bysshe Shelley . . . I met a traveller from an antique landWho said: "Two vast and trunkless legs of stoneStand in the desert. Near them on the sand,Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frownAnd wrinkled lip and sneer of cold commandTell that its sculptor well those passions readWhich yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.And on the pedestal these words appear:`My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!'Nothing beside remains. Round the decayOf that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,The lone and level sands stretch far away".
Sigh, another view of the "Shadow Lawn" of Long Island, or vice versa? While empires dont last, most Gilded Age builders probably expected that they were building family seats that would last for generations, but in a place and time where the population became so mobile and cities grew tenfold and taxes changed life forever, it was not to be. The developer also mentioned preserving the garden and its features, which btw where completely intact prior to development, just hidden under the leaves, complete with the stiars leading down to the walkways and the central reflecting pond, etc, but I presume that feature and the retaining walls didnt fit into the boring subdivision layout plopped down on the site. Again, a story of people with no vision or imagination or common sense. I mean any developer who could scrap the original entrance gates has to be a moron.
Archibuff---in regards to your question: Properly, as Shadow Lawn was the earlier house, it seems that the vice versa would be correct.One wonders if deLamar had seen Shadow Lawn or photos of and said, "yeah, I want some rooftop pavilions too..." Stylistically, they hark back to ancient Greek structures, with a trip through Rome, a passage through the 1893 Chicago Fair (whence likely came some of the mojo for Shadow Lawn's design---the fair had a ripple effect on architecture of the time, including even the town hall in our little village), with a side trip through D.W. Griffith and Cecil B. DeMille.
On the flip side... one of the architects that Parson had submit proposals for his replacement after the 1927 fire at 'Shadow Lawn' was C.P.H. Gilbert.
Yea that CPH Gilbert guy was everywhere in those days!!! Well if he didnt get his chance to build his Long Branch Xanadu at least he got the chance when Delamar said yes. Personally if you have a dramatic site to build upon I love the concept of a rooftop pavillion. And the Chicago Fair led to the birth of the City Beautiful movement which I dont think ever resulted in a bad plan or concept or building? Too bad we dont aspire to sonething as great these days.
Zach & Archibuff: I've taken a vow of silence on CPH, and I'm not going to let either of you stir me to action. Nope, not going to say a word about how stiff his design for Shadow Lawn might have been. Nope, not gonna. Would be beneath me.Actually, the Parsons would have been terrific clients for CPH...very ambitious plans and absolutely no taste. Even Trumbauer wasn't able to make their house totally tasteful..My verification word is batie, which is french for fortified village or fortress...as in 'the entrance to 'Gobroke' is like a batie':-)
Darn it, almost had him on the line. Well I could bring up those other fine townhomes, Delamar's on Madison Avene or the Warburg's and Fletcher-Sinclair's Fifth Avenue mansions, but nah, not today. We'll hook him and reel him in next time.
Today Mrs. Blandings has asked for titles of uplifting classical music. I'm just short of telling her to tune in to Old Long Island for the magnificent sounds of you folks talking to each other, I know it elevates me 5 days a week. Always puts a smile on my face plus one more neural pathway up top. -Flo
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