The Garden Guide

Book: A treatise on the theory and practice of landscape gardening, adapted to North America,1841
Chapter: Section I. Historical Sketches.

Van Rensselaer Manor, Bath, Albany

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The Manor House of the "Patroon" (as the eldest son of the Van Rensselaer family is called) is in the northern suburbs of the city of Albany. The mansion, greatly enlarged and improved a few years since, from the designs of Upjohn, is one of the largest and most admirable in all respects, to be found in the country, and the pleasure-grounds in the rear of the house are tasteful and beautiful. Beaverwyck, a little north of Albany, on the opposite bank of the river, is the seat of Wm. P. Van Rensselaer, Esq. (Fig. 7.) The whole estate is ten or twelve miles square, including the village of Bath on the river shore, and a large farming district. The home residence embraces several hundred acres, with a large level lawn, bordered by highly varied surface of hill and dale. The mansion, one of the first class, is newly erected from the plans of Mr. Diaper, and in its interior-its hall with mosaic floor of polished woods, its marble staircase, frescoed apartments, and spacious adjoining conservatory -is perhaps the most splendid in the Union. The grounds are yet newly laid out, but with much judgment; and six or seven miles of winding gravelled roads and walks have been formed-their boundaries now leading over level meadows, and now winding through woody dells. The drives thus afforded, are almost unrivalled in extent and variety, and give the stranger or guest, an opportunity of seeing the near and distant views to the best advantage.