Friday, January 08, 2010


The Museum is pleased to announce a new addition to its landscape – a beautifully crafted garden arbor that recreates a prominent historical feature of Miss Florence’s perennial garden during the days of the art colony. The new arbor was a project of the Museum’s Buildings and Grounds Committee chaired by Curly Lieber. Constructed of cedar and stained white, it was expertly installed by Bogaert Construction of Essex on January 4, 2010 against the backdrop of a pristine snow-covered garden. All parties concerned are very pleased with the outcome. We invite visitors to take a look at it on their next visit to the Florence Griswold Museum.

The idea of replicating the arbor has long been a goal of the Museum. A film from the 1920s shows Miss Florence walking toward the camera and passing under an arbor in the garden. Stills from the film guided the Museum in developing custom designs to replicate its scale and design characteristics. The arbor consists of four columns connected by a canopy of wooden lintels. At the Museum’s Annual Benefit in September 2008, money was raised from our patrons for this purpose. In 2009, the Museum commissioned Bogaert Construction to carry out this project, with the expectation that the arbor would be erected by the end of the year. Special thanks to Bruce Lawrence, John Bogaert, Paul Deckelman (Lead Carpenter) and Kevin Wakelee for their work on the arbor, and to trustee Chad Floyd and garden historian Sheila Wertheimer for their advice and help in bringing this to realization. Sheila reports that climbing roses of an heirloom variety favored by Florence Griswold will soon be climbing along the arbor. Something to look forward to this summer!

Posted by:

Jeffrey Andersen Ted Gaffney
Director Facilities Manager

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