MARQUAND PARK
William L. Engstrom - April 28, 2003

Dear friends,

Last week, while the clouds stayed away, I set out for an afternoon of pictures. Where should I go? There is a popular park about a block away from Battle Road and bounded on one side by Lovers Lane. During the years that we lived on Battle Road, Mrs. Marquand still occupied the home that her husband, Allan Marquand, had purchased in 1885, and the surrounding land was not open to inspection, but we all knew that it contained an enormous collection of rare trees. Owned since 1842 by a succession of Princeton University professors, all with a flare for horticulture, the place had acquired considerable renown for both the owners and their esteemed gardeners. After Mrs. Marquand's death in 1950, a portion of the property was opened as a public park.

Despite our closeness and the many times I have driven past, I had never before bothered to walk into Marquand Park. Wow! I have missed something wonderful. Every tree and bush is labeled, but species names are not required to appreciate the uniqueness of most of the specimens, because they are all unusual, and some of the majestic evergreen trees are exceedingly tall. I took many pictures, and these two deserve not to be shrunk.

The ample playground always seems busy when I drive past, and that is Lovers Lane that runs along side, and that's the real name of the road. Beyond the row of trees that form the backdrop for the rest of the picture lies yet another part of the park that is equally large and also landscaped. There is lots of space for a ball game or two, or just stretching out and absorbing solar warmth.

Here comes a panorama, and it is huge. Make your browser window as large as you know how. Center the image with your vertical scroll bar, then slowly move to the right with the horizontal scroll bar. The picture is around six feet wide.

The woman walking away from the camera on the path, above, and the one walking toward the camera near the right edge of the image is the same person. She walked around and behind me on the path while I swung the camera from right to left. This is a hand-held series of seven frames with the Canon S40, and it represents about 200 degrees. This is what panoramas are made for, because one picture conveys the entire layout of the park in a way that single shots could never do.

This is an Autumn Higan Cherry. Its double pink flowers precede the leaves in spring and may also appear during a warm autumn. Friday, there were many people strolling around, enjoying the sunshine, and I saw two women with a clipboard, obviously studying the trees. It is a place to come, just for a relaxing walk, and I shall return.

We send our colorful greetings. Have a beautiful day.



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