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Gates

Gates

The original wooden gates that enclosed the entrance and exit of the estate were imposing and impressive. Constructed of massive panels and flanked by columns surmounted by hefty stone orb finials, the design for these gates offered a sense of privacy that the Blisses had originally sought for their home. When the Blisses transferred Dumbarton Oaks to Harvard in 1940, and the private estate became a research institute, the public was welcomed to visit the gardens. Reflecting this shift, Ruth Havey designed an iron gate studded with the Bliss wheat motif and monograms, increasing the visibility of the estate and suggesting a sense of approachability.

Original gates
Original wooden gates. Garden Archives, LA-GP-1-17

Gates designed by Ruth Havey
Iron gate designed by Ruth Havey. Garden Archives, LA-GP-1-31

 

Image: Unsigned (probably Beatrix Farrand), R Street Gates, R.W. Bliss, Sketch showing location of handles bolts and hinges, ca. 1925–1931. Garden Archives, LA-GD-C-2-04

 

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