In 1913-14, Elizabeth Lord and her mother, Juliet, traveled to the Philippines to visit Elizabeth’s brother, Montague, who had moved there to work in the pineapple and sugar industries. This trip was Elizabeth’s first experience of Asia, and her diary reveals the strong impression the tropical beauty of the islands made on her. The pair returned home via China, visiting the Great Wall carried on palanquins, and, against the advice of the American Embassy in Peking, taking a train to Manchuria and then south to Korea. Upon returning to their hotel in Hong Kong after a three-day trip to Canton they learned of the beginning of World War I. After traveling to Japan, they boarded a steamer for San Francisco.
After Juliet’s death in 1924, Elizabeth made several more trips to the Philippines to visit Montague. During these trips she also visited Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore, and Borneo, where she walked across the island’s wilderness with several friends.
Impacted by the loss of her mother and trying to find her way, Elizabeth acted upon Montague’s suggestion to attend the Lowthorpe School of Landscape Architecture for Women in Massachusetts. Here she met Edith Schryver and in late 1928 the two headed to Salem, Oregon to open the first women-owned landscape architecture firm in the PNW. Their firm was very busy with residential and civic projects until 1934, when work slowed because of the Depression. The two decided to accept Montague’s offer to join him in Manila. Although Elizabeth was familiar with travel to Asia, this was a new experience for Edith.
Throughout their 40-year career, Lord & Schryver incorporated many design elements and plant recommendations from their extensive travels. If Elizabeth and Edith were here today, which large-scale design projects might they be working on? Here is a possibility…
Healing Garden at Oregon State Penitentiary (OSP)
In 2015, OSP’s Asian Pacific Family Club and its 120 Adult in Custody (AIC) members asked the Superintendent if they could raise funds to build a small koi pond as a peaceful refuge within the prison walls. Five years later, after much hard work and perseverance (with no taxpayer dollars spent) a beautiful Japanese-style healing garden has been constructed. AICs may now sign up to visit the garden as well as learn pruning, curatorial, and other horticultural skills.
Although Lord & Schryver probably would not have designed the traditional Japanese-style landscape plan, they may have advised on plant selection and helped with fundraising. Because the garden is not easily accessible, here is a short video.
And some spring 2021 photos.
Have a great week!