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MS Am 1424

Shurcliff, Arthur A. (Arthur Asahel), 1870-1957. Arthur Asahel Shurcliff notebooks, 1897-1902: Guide.

Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University


Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 USA

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Call No.: MS Am 1424
Repository: Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Creator: Shurcliff, Arthur A. (Arthur Asahel), 1870-1957.
Title: Arthur Asahel Shurcliff notebooks,
Date(s): 1897-1902.
Quantity: 1 collection (.14 linear feet (4 volumes in 1 case)
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Abstract: Logbooks and writings of the American landscape architect Arthur Asahel Shurcliff.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

55M-161. Gift of Arthur A. Shurcliff Esq.; 14 Beacon Street, Boston, Massachusetts; received: 1956 February.

Processing Information:

Processed by: Bonnie B. Salt

Conditions Governing Access:

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material. Collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation for Publication:

Arthur Asahel Shurcliff Notebooks, 1897-1902 (MS Am 1424). Houghton Library, Harvard University.

Biographical / Historical

Arthur Asahel Shurcliff (1870-1957) was a landscape architect who, with Frederick Law Olmstead, Jr., founded the landscape architecture program at Harvard University. Some of Shurcliff's well known works were: town planning of Colonial Williamsburg; laying out of Old Sturbridge Village; the Charles River Esplanade; the redesign of Frederick Law Olmsted's Back Bay Fens; the zoological park at Franklin Park; Paul Revere Mall (also called The Prado) in the North End; the John Harvard Mall in Charlestown; Carter's Grove in Virginia; and the Richard Crane Estate (known as Castle Hill) at Ipswich, Massachusetts. He was born as Arthur Asahel Shurtleff, and changed his last name to Shurcliff in 1930 in order, he said, to conform to the "ancient spelling of the family name."


Arranged chronologically.All 4 volumes are housed in 1 case.

Scope and Contents

Includes an autograph manuscript volume concerning Charles Eliot's remarks on landscape architecture, together with three logbooks of trips taken to Newburyport and Concord, Massachusetts and Europe. Includes cyanotype photographs, landscape garden sketches, a few letters, and additional material. Most of the material in the first volume is by Shurcliff, but some are originals by Charles Eliot (1859-1897). Shurcliff was accompanied in the trips to Concord and Newburyport by Robert Peabody Bellows (1879-1957), who became a Boston architect with the firm of Aldrich & Bellows. There are a few Bellows' sketches in the notebooks as well.

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