Next for Newport Preservation: Gilded-Age Beeches
NEWPORT, R.I. — In the Gilded Age, the rich built marble palaces here, surrounding them with exotic trees they acquired with the same ardor they brought to assembling their fabulous collections of art.
Their favorites were European beeches — green, copper and weeping beeches — trees they prized for their dramatic shapes and colors. Soon the streets of Newport’s mansion district were filled with the trees.
Today, many of them tower as high as 80 feet. “They are icons of Newport, the signature trees of the Gilded Age,” said John R. Tschirch, an architectural historian who directs conservation programs at the Preservation Society of Newport County, which owns many of the mansions.
But the trees are in trouble. Planted more or less all at once about 120 years ago, they are aging all at once now, a process hastened by insect and fungus infestations they can no longer fight off. Though the mansion district’s main street, Bellevue Avenue, looks almost as elegant as ever, here and there stands a skeleton tree, bereft of leaves, or a stump perhaps five feet across, all that remains of a vanished giant....
comments powered by Disqus
- Priests race to save manuscripts from jihadists in Iraq
- Where Mud Is Archaeological Gold, Russian History Grew on Trees
- Conflict Uncovers a Ukrainian Identity Crisis Over Deep Russian Roots
- Heirs Claim Bank Made Off with Nazi-Looted Art
- Add the University of Virginia to the list of universities actively confronting their association with slavery
- Stanley Kutler’s book on Nixon Watergate abuses has been turned into a show on the web
- China bans books by pro-Hong Kong historian who retired from Princeton
- Fordham Historian Lambasts ‘Shabby Treatment’ In Row Over Israel Boycott, Vows to Continue Fighting Anti-Semitism
- George Mason's digital history program is 20 years old -- and celebrating
- Watergate researchers can now see the materials — including tapes — Len Colodny used in writing "Silent Coup"