Historic Thompson Park was designed and created in 1899 after a local industrialist, John C. Thompson, made a generous donation to Watertown and its citizens. Mr. Thompson was inspired by Central Park and its designer, Frederick Law Olmsted. He wanted to bring the same concept to Watertown, utilizing its landscape to have a public space for people to enjoy.
Fredrick Olmsted passed his design firm down to his son, Frederick Olmsted Jr., and step-son, John C. Olmsted in 1895 after retiring. Mr. Olmsted recommended the Olmsted Brothers firm to Mr. Thompson after he wrote to him about the design of the park. Designs for the park began in 1899. Mr. Thompson first purchased the land in the first bottom photo known as “The Pinnacle”. Mr. Thompson had only one request, that his identity of being the donor was kept a secret at the time.
Fast Forward to 2022, over 100 years later, The Pinnacle is still standing strong (second photo on bottom). Throughout park, there are many scenic viewpoints overlooking the city of Watertown. To know that Historic Thompson Park is an Olmsted Design alongside Central Park in New York City, Prospect Park in Brooklyn, and Emerald Necklace in Boston, is remarkable. A lot may have changed in the world since the park was created in 1899, but there is no question that its breathtaking views, greenery, and open space for the public will always stay the same, which is what Mr. Thompson wanted the park to be known for.
Historic Thompson Park
Thompson Park, 1 Thompson Park, Watertown, New York 13601, United States
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