August 2, 2017

Trenton’s Cadwalader Park: An Olmsted Vision 

The Trenton Museum Society is pleased to announce “Bosted on Olmsted” on Sunday, August 13 at 1:30 p.m. at the Trenton City Museum. The talk will focus on Olmsted’s two designs in Mercer County. There are exhibitions about Olmsted during the Summer of 2017 on both floors of the Trenton City Museum. The exhibits run to September 17.

Olmsted believed that the public realm should be a respite; a place to retreat from the stress of urban life, and that public open space should be accessible to all people. By the time FLO began to design Cadwalader Park in 1890, he had been planning parks in this country’s leading cities for over 30 years. Cadwalader Park in Trenton is Olmsted’s last great urban park design.

Cadwalader Park is also notable as the only park in New Jersey personally designed by Frederick Law Olmsted. While many other parks and spaces were designed by the Olmsted firm in the years following, Cadwalader is the only park in New Jersey to be designed by Olmsted himself.

The Lawrenceville School is Olmsted’s most successful campus design. Having two Olmsted designs only a few miles apart is a special honor for Mercer County. The talk by David Bosted will delve into the design problems that Olmsted faced in each location, park and campus. The talk will compare and contrast Olmsted’s design solutions in each location.

The current exhibit at Ellarslie Mansion opened with a lecture by E. Timothy Marshall, former Administrator for Central Park, covering the design for Central Park in New York City. Marshall spoke about the challenges of maintaining Central Park today. This lecture, Bosted on Olmsted, will primarily have a local focus, and will show how Olmsted’s design principles are revealed in the Mercer County plans.

David Bosted has lectured on Olmsted in many venues since his first lecture on the topic at Ramapo College in 1975. He designed and acquired land for a park system for Martha’s Vineyard Island as director of the Martha’s Vineyard Land Bank in the mid-1980s. Locally, David Bosted served four terms as president of the Island Civic Association in Trenton and twelve years as a member of the Trenton City Zoning Board of Adjustment, including serving as chairman of the board. Currently he is a trustee of the Trenton Museum Society and chairman of the Lawrence Township Shade Tree Advisory Committee. He is a retired attorney who served as a State Deputy Attorney General in New Jersey. He has a master’s degree in urban planning from Rutgers University.

For more information about this talk or about the tours, see the Ellarslie website at, call (609) 989-3632 or email