New Book Due for Release in November 2019!

book cover with title reading "Olmsted in Seattle; Creating a Park System for a Modern City, by Jennifer Ott and HistoryLink staff." Full color photo of woodland path in autumn.

Look for the release of our new book later this fall! Olmsted in Seattle: Creating a Park System for a Modern City, by Jennifer Ott, is the culmination of an 18-month effort by HistoryLink and Documentary Media, in partnership with Friends of Seattle’s Olmsted Parks. The book traces the story of how, in the midst of galloping growth at the turn of the 20th century, Seattle’s city leaders seized on the confluence of a roaring economy with the City Beautiful movement to hire the Olmsted Brothers landscape architecture firm. Their 1903 plan led to a supplemental plan, a playground plan, numerous park and boulevard designs, changes to park system management, and a ripple effect for the firm, as the Olmsted Brothers were subsequently hired to design public and private landscapes throughout the region.

The book, distributed by UW Press, will be available in early November. Following are a few of the events being planned around the book’s release:

October 3
Dunn Gardens Books & Beer Program
6:00 – 8:00 pm

October 20
Dunn Gardens Fall Foliage Festival (booth at the event)
1:00 – 4:00 pm

November 12
Book Presentation, Douglas Classroom, Center for Urban Horticulture
7:00 – 8:00 pm

November 16
BOOK LAUNCH, Seattle Public Library, Downtown Branch
2:00-3:30 pm

Author Jennifer Ott is an environmental historian and assistant director of HistoryLink, and she is also a former president of FSOP (2011-15) and founding and current Volunteer Park Trust steering committee member. Previous publications include the book Waterway: The Story of Seattle’s Locks and Ship Canal(co-authored with David B. Williams), and articles for the Oregon Historical Quarterly,, and Seattle magazine.

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