Historic Prospect Garden in on Princeton's Campus/A Gorgeous Floral Display
Flowers in Prospect Gardens
This summer, when searching for a picnic spot my husband and I found a beautiful garden tucked away in the center of the Princeton University Campus in New Jersey . If you are not looking you will miss it but if you see it you will never forget it. Better known as Prospect Gardens the garden was built behind the most historic architecture on the campus, Prospect House. The first person to own the the land Prospect House was built on was Col. George Morgan. He had a farmhouse buiilt and called it Prospect because of the beautiful view from his home. It was the mid18th century.Later the farmhouse was purchased by John Potter, a wealthy merchant from Charleston SC. He commissioned the American architect John Notman to build a beautiful Italianate Victorian Mansion in place of the farmhouse in1849.
Prospect House is the only building that was not originally built for the University. In 1878 Robert L. and Alexander Stuart of New York bought the mansion and deeded it to then the College of New Jersey. Later the college name was changed to Princeton University.
Soon it became the home for the president's of the University and was often used as a walk through by campus students. Then president of the university, Woodrow Wilson, built an iron fence around the 5 acres of grounds to keep the students from walking across the land. President Wilson's wife Ellen designed the walkway to appear in the shape of the school shield when seen from above. It was then 1904.
Plants in the garden range from the simple to the exotic. They are changed seasonally through funding of an anonymous donor. In 1968 the president's resident was moved and the home was converted to a dining hall.
There are other secret gardens throughout the beautiful sprawling campus but Prospect is the most famous. The beauty of the campus is seen in all it's splendor in all seasons be it the schools architecture,. Ivy covered walls, magnolia trees, sculptures or gardens.
Today the area in and around Prospect House can also be used for all kinds of events, including weddings, bar mitzvah..