Dumbarton Oaks Park Conservancy is a non-profit organization established in 2010 that is working to restore one of the United States of America’s ten greatest garden landscape designs, the 27-acre Dumbarton Oaks Park (the Park), formerly part of the Dumbarton Oaks estate in Georgetown, Washington, DC. The estate is a milestone in the history of American landscape architecture and a landmark in our social history, as it represents the finest work of Beatrix Farrand, America’s first professional female landscape architect. Farrand was one of eleven founding members (the only female founding member) of the American Society of Landscape Architects and is regarded as one of America’s foremost landscape practitioners of the 20th century. She shattered the glass ceiling in her profession, and this is her crowning achievement.
As a “naturalistic,” but intensely designed landscape of meadows, woodlands, bulbs and wildflowers, paths and ponds, and constructed waterfalls, Dumbarton Oaks Park offers recreation as well as restorative quiet, beauty, and inspiration for Washington, DC residents and visitors from beyond. It also presents opportunities for education from nature for children attending schools near this oasis in the midst of a busy metropolitan area of five million people.
The Park has deteriorated significantly during the last half century due to resource limitations faced by the National Park Service (NPS), which has managed it since the Park passed from private to public hands in 1940. Dumbarton Oaks Park Conservancy, in partnership with the NPS, now seeks to bring this historic landscape back to its aesthetic splendor while also enhancing its modern-day utility to the national capital community.