FALLS: THE REPORT OF
[Including a discussion and evaluation of the Gardner Report]
In Governor Robinson's message
to the legislature in January, 1879 (Robinson, in Report of the Executive
Committee of the Niagara Falls Association, 1885), specific reference was
made to the protection of visitors, and, although New York and Ontario had
civil jurisdiction over the Falls of Niagara, yet "in one sense, the
sublime exhibition of natural power there witnessed is the property of the
whole world." That there was an agenda already in place is referred to
by the sentence: "There can be no doubt that many persons abstain from
visiting the Falls in consequence of the annoyances referred to, nor can
there be any reasonable doubt that the removal of these objections would
largely increase the number of visitors annually." As already discussed
in the previous section, there was competition between the Canadian and
American cities by the cataracts for the money visitors brought with them in
their desire to see the falls. There was extensive building and expansion of
commercial enterprises and the introduction of rival spectacles and
entertainments to lure increasing crowds to the tourist infrastructure in
place in the prospect areas of both countries. In one sense, Robinson's
message was not only an appeal to protect the ephemeral visitor population at
the Falls, but an appeal to devise a plan to "increase the number of
visitors annually." It appears that Robinson's message was protective of
the tourist industry in place at
However, there are two
published versions of Robinson's 1879 message to the Legislature. The one
quoted above by the Niagara Falls Association, to be discussed below, and
one, presumably the official one, as it is a Senate document, contained in
the first annual report of the Commissioners of the Niagara Reservation
published in 1885. In this second version of the message, the remarks of Lord
Dufferin, Governor-General of Canada, with whom
Robinson collaborated on introduction of the
The Legislature did not hesitate to respond "by a joint resolution of the Legislature of that year" (1879) to direct the Commissioners of the New York State Survey "to inquire, consider and report what, if any, measures it may be expedient for the State to adopt for carrying out the suggestions contained in the annual message of the Governor with respect to Niagara Falls" (Report of the Executive Committee of the Niagara Falls Association, 1885). The Commissioners were W. A. Wheeler, Robert S. Hale, William Dorsheimer, Francis A. Stout, George Geddes (son of James Geddes, engineer of the Erie Canal - the son being a specialist in law, engineering and farming,) and F.A.P. Barnard, President of Columbia College (Roper, 1973).
Director of the New York State Survey at the time was James T. Gardner, who was directed "to make an examination of the premises, and prepare for their consideration such a project ... and they associated with him Mr. Frederick Law Olmsted" (Rep. of the Exec. Comm, Nia. Falls Assn., 1885). Note that the spelling of Mr. Gardner's name here follows that used in the final report submitted to the Legislature in 1880 - it is sometimes spelled Gardner or Gardener. The resolution laid out an agenda that was a striking contrast to that presumably proposed by Robinson, according to the Niagara Association. The response of the New York State Legislature promoted an environmental, not a tourist, agenda, that is, the entire point of all interest was the integrity of that area the tourists were visiting. The intent of the legislation was not to provide for tourists, but to protect the object of their interest and the freedom to enjoy that object without distraction.
The State Legislature appointed the Commissioners and Gardner and Olmsted to determine "how far the private holding of land about Niagara Falls has worked to public disadvantage through defacements of the scenery; to determine the character of such defacements; to estimate the tendency to greater injury, and, lastly to consider whether the proposed action by the State is necessary to arrest the process of destruction and restore to the scenery its original character" (Report of the Executive Committee of the Niagara Falls Association, 1885). Note that "scenery" here is essentially synonymous with "environment" and is botanical in character, as will be seen below.
In that same year, the Commissioners, Gardner and Olmsted came to the area and contributed their findings, which, together with the determinations of the Commissioners, were published in 1880 in the Report of the New York State Survey for the year 1879 entitled "Special Report of New York State survey on the Preservation of the Scenery of Niagara Falls, and Fourth Annual Report on the Triangulation of the State for the year 1879." The special report is 42 pages long. In it Governor Robinson's full message to the Legislature is included, together with Lord Dufferin's comments.
The plan for the preservation of the scenery at Niagara Falls is composed of the report of the Commissioners of the New York State Survey, the report of Mr. Gardner, and that of Mr. Olmsted, in addition to two illustrations, a series of heliotype prints, the signatories of a petition in favor of the establishment of the reservation, Governor Robinson's 1879 message and a facsimile reprint of Hennepin's description of the falls at Niagara.
The First Illustration
To give it the most dramatic
thrust, the first product of the study is an illustration of the object of
the plan, the product of the study itself. It is a fold-out illustration
drawn by Francis Lathrop and engraved by a Mr. Marsh entitled "Ideal
view of the American Rapids, after the
Presumably this illustration would not have been included or given such prominence had it not been an important part of the intentions of the Commissioners, Mr. Gardner and Mr. Olmsted.
In the drawing, the sight of
the City of
The banks are not riprapped
and show irregular erosional effects, including the slumping slope with a
many-stemmed tree group inclining into the river, much as can be seen today
on the wet, sagging slopes of the north shore of Goat Island. The trees are
of considerable age and show no attempt at pruning: broken major branches are
conspicuous on some trees, stems distorted by natural processes are shown, a
tall old tree bole with its canopy blasted away by natural events is shown on
what is probably
Note that in the heliotype
print constituting Plate III showing the aspect of Prospect Park in 1879 as
seen as looking north across the American Falls from Goat Island, and that
the Park is still extensively wooded for all the buildings and other
improvements reported to have been constructed on it. The city is completely
masked from view by the tree canopy.
To resume, there are no roads or paths or structures of any kind shown in the illustration, nor are any human beings shown at all. Note that the shoreline of the mainland does not depict the limestone flats that probably occurred there at the time of the drawing, but perhaps were built over or appeared to the illustrator to represent human degradation of a natural landscape feature but which were, in fact, created by the dynamics of the river itself. Note that the caption said the depiction is an ideal situation. To give the viewer today some idea what the view up the American rapids would look like after restoration, one may stand on one of the two farther bridges on the Three Sisters Islands where the vegetation comes uninterrupted to the river bank, and where most of the developed shoreline in the Canadian and on Goat Island is blocked from view.
It is apparent from the
illustration that the primeval vegetation exhibited on
The Report of the Commissioners
The Commissioner's topics proceeded as follows:
1. The duty of the Commissioners was defined as investigation into the defacement of scenery, degradation of landscape, necessity of government action to arrest further deterioration. No reference was made to the duty of the Commissioners to investigate conditions with respect to visitors, but their duty was entirely environmental.
2. Visitor dynamics. The Commissioners discussed certain characteristics of tourist behavior but explicitly state this is "a matter not directly comprehended in the instructions of the Commissioners," which was to correct scenic disfigurements. They addressed this subject due to an extensive "public concern."
First they expressed surprise that the, at that point, still healthy climate of the City of Niagara Falls, its high quality inns, and related services and natural attractions should not be "the temporary residence of great numbers of those who every summer migrate from town to country, and one of the most popular places of vacation sojourn in all the world."
They observed that
Yet tourists at
The source of the quickness of
the stay, and the ease with which disappointment is stimulated was considered
due to the nature of the landscape itself. This observation is critical to an
understanding of the "best use" of
Flat, glaciated terrain of
little note extends right up to the crest of the Niagara Gorge. Only several
city blocks away from the falls and gorge there is no evidence for the
existence of the falls, except, today, for a sound that could be that the
railroad yards, and an atmospheric cloud that could be taken for vented steam
from a factory stack. This may account for the subsequent century-long
attempts by various proposers to build up the expectations of the visitor as
they cross miles of unremarkable terrain to prepare them for the spectacle
they have come miles to see. Unprepared, the visitor may be unable to easily
assimilate the extraordinary phenomenon presented and be "unimpressed,"
that is to say, unable to shake the boredom associated with the monotony of
the adjacent and surrounding prairies and lake plain, or, upon leaving, be
unable to retain the excitement they did permit themselves - as was the
experience of Judge George Clinton when he saw the falls as a youth of
eighteen. Topographically uninteresting terrain leading up to the falls, in
the present day, for example, exacerbates this lack of interest by the
urbanization on all approaches, which intensifies the sameness of visitor experience
and deadens their immediate memory. Similar phenomena probably occur wherever
the significant natural feature is a canyon worn below the surrounding
regional land surface - even the
These sentiments were expressed over a century ago by the famous English geologist Charles Lyell (1855):
region between Lake Erie and the borders of
As early as 1819, the educated
Scotch botanist John Goldie also noted the strange and, to him, unexpected,
flatness of the region approaching the falls. "On approaching them I
found the ground in their vicinity to exhibit a very different appearance
from what I had expected. Instead of high rocks & precipices above the
Falls, and low valleys & glens below them, all is perfectly level to
appearance. ... At the distance of 200 yds there is
nothing to be seen in the banks of the River that would lead you to expect
any such thing as Falls at this place" (Goldie, 1819). Goldie is a
perfect example of the nature of the ill-humor, or disappointment frequently
remarked upon by proponents and developers of the falls alike. Their
The Commissioners had a remedy
for this disappointment - to slow the pace of the visitor long enough for the
According to the Commissioners, "the value of Niagara to the world, and that which has obtained for it the homage of so many men whom the world reveres, lies in its power of appeal to the higher emotional and imaginative faculties, and this power is drawn from qualities and conditions too subtle to be known through verbal description." This value can only be appropriated by slowness, by activities and environments promoting a "composed, receptive and contemplative frame of mind." This concept would later be translated into modes of transportation, and later still be abandoned by the administration of the park eventually established at Niagara Falls in the promotion of the automobile and its potential for supporting "the bare satisfaction of curiosity in the waterfall."
3. The Commissioners resumed
their environmental conclusions and determined that the "scenery of
4. The Commissioners
recommended the employment of eminent domain to condemn the private
properties for the public good, such as "when private ferries are
supplanted by free public bridges." This was to reserve such land
"to give satisfactory access to the
Based on determinations by Gardner and Olmsted, they recommended that the islands in the river and a bit of land along the riverbank on the mainland be taken for the public good.
It is clear what the
Commissioners accepted were
a. the buildings in place were to be removed.
b. the immediate bank of the river "shall be formed so as to have a natural aspect."
c. Its shoreline was to be protected from erosion by modifications of the slope and "by rough, loosely piled local rock."
d. "Trees and bushes are proposed to be planted":
1. composed of the same species as were native to the area and
are to be laid out to conform to the ecosystem structure observable in the
unaltered woodlands and riverbanks in the
e. This ecosystem restoration was to be carried back from the river margin "back to the boundary on the crest of the terrace."
f. The effect was to visually
isolate the lands in question completely from the buildings of the
g. Inside of this "narrow
woodland," and "along the rear" of it, about "one hundred
feet distant from the water's edge" was to be a road and a walk. From
the walk would be constructed "inconspicuous shaded seats commanding views
of the rapids" except at
The illustration preceding
this discourse appears to clearly express the visual objectives of
5. The Commissioners made it
clear that they accepted
Olmsted urged that the land:
a. not be used for "general pleasuring," in today's terms, such as picnicking, playing tennis, baseball, frisbee, concerts, helicopters, hot-air balloon rides, roller skating
b. not be used for ornamental displays, such as gardens (the artificial laying out of exotic species in unnatural arrangements) and monuments.
c. whatever was to be built was not to break the visual integrity of the natural landscape.
Mr. Olmsted's reasons were based on the understanding that greater numbers of people would eventually have the means to visit the falls. If any one of the preceding three requirements were neglected, such visitation would overwhelm and destroy the natural environment. It was to negate the impact of great visitor numbers that Olmsted made those recommendations.
To protect the considerable
value of the native landscape and the landscape restored, the only service
the government would be required to provide would be to allow visitors, in
comfort and safety, to come, look, and go away. This may seem like an
unnaturally proscribed service to tourists, but the visual environment at
This explains the other
illustration included in the special report on the preservation of the
The nearby commercial enterprises in the village were adequate to attend to all other visitor needs, hence Olmsted saw no need for "houses of refreshment, shops, booths, and places of amusement and exhibition." Nor did he see any need for "extensive shelters."
Olmsted did, however,
entertain the idea of structures built to improve the ability of
visitor-access to views. Visitors came from around the world to do what they
could do nowhere else in the world: look on the
6. The next paragraph makes
reference to Schoellkopf's hydraulic canal. The
Commissioners assure the Legislature that it is fully operational. The
Porters, who operated the mill on
The reason why these milling operations occurred between Port Day and the brink of the American Falls was because they were taking advantage, not of the 200-foot head accessible at the Canal Basin, but the rapid 50-foot drop in elevation of the river associated with the ridges (The Cascades) perpendicular to the river bed forming the western boundary of the Chippewa-Grass Island Pool. The hydraulic canal of 1877 and the one built later just upriver of it both diverted water from the pool, above the cascades, exploiting the hydraulic potential of the drop in elevation of the canal bed and the gorge rim, not that of the river. In a sense, the canal and the discharge races at its lower end, were hydraulic analogues of the natural river and falls.
It could not be determined whether the Porters ever actually did relocate their mill on Schoellkopf's canal, or the fate of any of the other mill operations then operating on the riverbank. But then, as will be discussed below, the Porters may have been more interested in establishing a second, rival, canal east of Schoellkopf's.
7. The Commissioners determined that the cost of the land recommended by Gardner and Olmsted would not be excessive since the boundary lines "are so laid down as to leave out, not only the principal water works, factories and shops for which the Falls have given occasion" but also the hotels and other public accommodations.
Furthermore, the State would, if following Olmsted's suggestions, not need to anticipate "costly constructions or elaborate arrangements for the entertainment of the public." And as for the potential for corruption (by whom and from where is not mentioned), there would be no licenses or leases "which might be corruptly dealt with."
The continued operation of
private enterprise on the riverbanks at
Future generations were expected to deplore the failure of the State in protecting this distinguished resource. "If we blame the men of a former day for not setting apart when it was the property of the State and might easily have been done, the Falls of Niagara as the Yo Semite and the Yellowstone have in our day ..., then how much more culpable shall we be, who knowing their value and perceiving their certain destruction, still refuse to take the necessary measures for their preservation."
It is significant here to
Roper (1973) appears to settle this question:
"In recommending the
proposal, Mowat advised that the governments of the
Dominion of Canada and of the
9. The Commissioners held a
conference with the "members of the ministry of the
They met on September 27 in company with Gardner and Olmsted. "'The general outlines of a scheme which I presented was fully approved by all,' Olmsted wrote [Charles Elliot] Norton. Oliver Mowat ... and one of the commissioners, reported on it to Lord Lorne, successor to Lord Dufferin. Only those arrangements were to be made that were necessary to restore and preserve the natural character of the scenery; it was not intended to make a park or artificial enclosures. The reservation [for State and Province] was to include the islands above the falls and a strip on either side of the river, wide enough for planting to screen out the buildings behind it, from the head of the rapids downstream to the railroad suspension bridge. A modest fee, to defray expenses, would probably be levied on sightseers" (Roper, 1973, from a copy of a letter Oliver Mowat wrote to [Lord Lorne], 9 December, Box 31).
After the report of the
Commissioners was written, they received news that "the legislature of
This insistence on the
exclusion of the federal government from protection of
The Commissioners reassure the Legislature that the Canadians would cooperate in the legislation to make an international park. In fact, an Act passed "by the Legislature of Ontario in March, 1880, entitled 'An Act respecting Niagara Falls and the adjacent territory'" (Statute of the Province of Ontario, 43 Vict., cap. 13) stated that Canada would, in cooperation with the State of New York, "restore the scenery about the Falls to its natural condition and at the same time afford travelers facilities for observing the points of interest in the neighbourhood" (Way, 1946).
10. The Commission recommended that the Legislature "take such action ... to acquire the lands" under discussion, and to appoint a Commission to deal with the legal matters in so doing.
The Report of Mr. Gardner
Gardner defined Niagara Falls: the rapids (cascades), the islands in the river, the falls and the plunge pool. He emphasized the quality of the remaining woods and the quality of the experience still to be had, but threatened by the imposition of development: the mill on Bath Island.
Verbally Gardner contrasted the positive and the negative:
Positive: picturesque clusters of evergreens, rich overhanging foliage, deep woods seclusion, surrounded by the influences of nature, graceful woods, banks rich in verdure and overhung with stately trees, pebbly shores, graceful ferns, trailing vines, a mighty torrent writhing and foaming in fury.
Negative: paper mill, started in an "evil hour," unsightly sheds and buildings, disfigurations by wing-dams and ice barriers, the mill an abomination, blank stone walls with sewer-like openings through which tail-races discharge, timber crib work, advertisements, ranks of buildings in all stages of preservation and decay, hotels, mills, carpenter shops, stables, bazaars, ice-houses, laundries, bath houses, rookeries, fences, patent medicine signs, ruin, confusion, solid ugliness.
Later, the State would acquire the "Tugby Bazaar building, the brick and stone shops, the pulp mill and machinery, and the Rapids Hotel building," and sell at least six frame buildings, a planing shop, flouring mill, boat house, bath house, stone foundry, barn, shed, stone house, wing of a hotel building, ice house, store, shop buildings, mill flumes, old fences and lumber. These were "three dwellings, four mills, two hotel buildings, two stores, five stables, two ice houses, one stone house, one pump house and one bath house, beside a number of sheds, and many fences" (2 Ann Rep Comm, 1886). One of the mills was the Witmer mill, and one of the sales, later in 1886, was an "Edison electric light plant" (3 Ann Rep Comm, 1887).
Gardner naively assumed the permanence of the liquid landscape: "The Falls themselves man cannot touch." This is because the hydraulic canal was barely operational and had not yet tested its ability to divert water from the river. Perhaps its owners had not yet computed to the square foot the amount of water it could rent to those using water in their mill sites situated on the canal. Gardner confined his discussion to the destruction of the "beautiful frame of foliage" at the Falls.
Loss of foliage creates "deep feelings of regret and even of resentment" on intelligent visitors. "The chasm below the Cataract depends for its impressiveness largely upon the wooded character of the debris slopes and the maintaining of a fringe of verdure along the very brink of the precipice." These elements are "essential to the perfection of the landscape." Note that in the heliotype print of the Canadian side as seen across the brink of the Horseshoe Falls how destitute of vegetation is the bank of earth behind the buildings in the foreground. Today, this embankment is heavily wooded with trees of considerable age. Note, except for the canopies of scattered trees down on the embankment, the complete lack of trees on the top of the embankment.
The only acreage left with its original forest was Goat Island - if the State did not purchase it, even this would be lost. The Porters had to and were in the very process of selling it "owing to a partition suit now in progress." Gardner gave a list of developments proposed for the island, no doubt prepared, according to subsequent literature published by a member of that family (Porter, 1900), by the family itself.
Note at this juncture how helpful the Porter family was being in assisting the Commissioners, Gardner and Olmsted in preparing arguments in favor of the State buying their land, first in the case of their milling operations on Bath Island, as discussed above (section 6), and now in the case of Goat Island itself. It appears as though the Porters were leaving their water-front properties at the brink of the American Falls - but perhaps not those upriver of the entrance to Schoellkopf's hydraulic canal.
Gardner again specified the environmental nature of the State's role: "to restore to all the river shores something of their original character."
Gardner cited several examples of government setting aside land for public protection: the Yosemite valley, 1865, the "great tract covering the region of the Yellowstone Geysers - a National Park, the land occupied by the California Big Trees, and, in New York State, the Islands of Lake George."
Gardner chastised the State for selling any of the five-mile strip of land along the Mile Strip embracing the falls of the Niagara River. He urged that "the spot [be] restored by planting to its former beauty," that the mainland strip be planted with trees so that "the whole village may be shut out from view - 'planted out'" and the banks restored to their present appearance on Goat Island.
The utility of including both the drawing described above, showing the restored view, and the heliotype prints showing the developed condition of the riverbank was explained: "To realize the total change that the carrying out of this plan would make in the aspects of Niagara, those who are not familiar with the scene may compare the accompanying photographs of the village shore with the picture of the same ground as it will appear when restored according to our plan [my emphasis].
These illustrations were not decorations but served a definite purpose.
Gardner recommended that the State also purchase the debris slopes on the mainland section "for the purpose of preserving and restoring the woods that border this part of the river."
"We also recommend that the right be secured to plant and maintain a narrow belt of trees with a walk at least a mile in length along the edge of the cliff below the suspension bridge. This planted belt need not be over twenty five or thirty feet broad. Its trees will clothe the barren nakedness of the cliff edge and partially screen out mills and unsightly structures from the river views, and at the same time afford shade to visitors enjoying the profound impressions of this part of the chasm." The State need not buy the land but only secure a right to plant and preserve. The property belongs to the Hydraulic Power and Canal Company and is to be used for Mills. The walls of these mills will be set back from the cliff, their wheel pits only being sunk at the edge of the precipice. There will be few of these pits, and they can be easily bridged for the proposed walk. The President of the Company owning this property [Jacob Schoellkopf, according to Adams, 1927] has assured us that he will willingly cede the desired right to the State."
Gardner urged that a board of commissioners be set up to assess the value of lands slated for condemnation under the right of eminent domain.
Prior to the era of the railways, only the rich enjoyed Niagara. Now everyone could. A total of 100,000 people visited the falls in 1897. Ownership by the government would make the area open to all citizens.
Again, Gardner urged the illustration showing the objective of his and Olmsted's design be examined: "Although truthful in the general impression conveyed, such a view cannot, of course, be accurate in detail."
The Goat Island forest is a living monument of history, and so facsimiles of Hennepin's description and illustration are included in the report, "this first recorded visit of a white man to the Falls." The ancient trees on Goat Island have witnessed all the history of the past two hundred years, they are "the only living witnesses" of the passage of history at the falls and must be preserved. One cannot help but wonder if this interesting historical perspective was provided by the Porters, who obviously consulted with both Commissioners, as noted above, and Olmsted and Gardner. Albert Porter had written a short pamphlet published sometime after 1875 detailing the history of the village and the Porter fortunes there, and some of Gardner's historic sentiments reappear in Peter A. Porter's history of Goat Island published for the Legislature in 1900.
Gardner ends with the declaration of the value of the geologic environment of the Falls for study: "the conclusions to be attained by accurate geological study of the region open almost limitless views into far-reaching vistas of the continent's physical history."
The value of the scenery, associated history and opportunity for scientific study may be preserved by the State against the values of "money-getters," the "axe of the mill-man," the "purveyor of public amusements," that is, the present owners of the riverbank properties.
The Report of Mr. Olmsted
It was Mr. Olmsted's opinion that "most of the people of Niagara [are those] to whom it appears that the waterfall have so supreme an interest to the public that what happens to the adjoining scenery is of trifling consequence." His opinion derives from personal experience with local opinion. "Were all the trees cut away, quarries opened in the ledges, the banks packed with hotels and factories, and every chance-open space occupied by a circus tent, the falls would still, these think, draw the world to them." This opinion, indicated Olmsted, derived from profit alone as the sole value.
Olmsted cautioned that because visitors use the arrangements made for them, they must be considered a captive market. Their use of the facilities should not be taken as their acceptance of their approval.
Over the course of forty-five years of occasional visiting Niagara Falls, Olmsted recalled a gradual quickening of pace throughout this time. Visitors originally alighted from their carriages and made expeditions into the natural areas over the course of several days. It was because they were hurried along by tourist-related "services" that the duration of their stays decreased.
Olmsted gave an extended quote from "Alpine Flowers" by William Robinson (1875) who provided a lavish description of the natural environment about the Falls. Olmsted identified two of the world's most distinguished students of botanical science, Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker of Kew Gardens, and Dr. Asa Gray of Harvard, as expressing their appreciation of the exotic diversity of the vegetation in the Goat Island complex, and Olmsted, referring to his extensive travels in the American southwest throughout the rich forests of the Appalachian mountains, has found no example of forest beauty to match that on Goat Island.
He owed this extraordinary condition of the flora to its extraordinary situation beside the cataracts of the Niagara River and discussed various atmospheric reasons for the luxurious beauty of the Goat Island forest.
Olmsted ended his section by a quote from the Duke of Argyle who became nearly prostrate with delight by standing in one single vista up the rapids from the falls. Otherwise, he rested his case on the statements made by the Commissioners and by Mr. Gardner, made, where appropriate, at his recommendation.
The "Memorial addressed to the Governor of New York and the Governor-General of Canada"
This is the result of a petition. Lord Dufferin is given exclusive attribution for the political suggestion that there be an international park at the falls of Niagara.
The undersigned universally deplored the de-foliation of Niagara's river banks and the development arising in their place.
There followed a list of the world's luminaries in society and culture, including the Vice-President of the United States, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and perhaps all of the Associate Justices, the Chief Justice Court of Appeals, Canada, the Judge of the Queen's Bench, United States Senators, an Admiral, and so forth.
Then follow English men of letters such as Thomas Carlyle, John Ruskin, and famous Americans such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry W. Longfellow, and so forth. It is an extraordinary list of contemporaries of the greatest prestige. Western New York's own Josiah Letch-worth, George W. Clinton and William Dorsheimer appear, and so was the manufacturer Pascal P. Pratt, who sat on the Board of Parks Commissioners and was central to the plan to bring Olmsted to Buffalo to distinguish the city with a series of urban parks under his design (Brown & Watson, 1982).
The report concluded with a facsimile of the pages of Hennepin's book with his description of the falls, and a reprinting of Governor Robinson's message to the New York State Legislature of January 9, 1879.
"Ideal view of the American Rapids after the Village Shore and Bath Island are restored."
Adams, Edward Dean. 1927. Niagara Power: History of the Niagara Falls Power Company 1886-1918. 2 Vols. Niagara Falls Power Company, Niagara Falls, New York.
Goldie, John. 1819. Diary of a Journey Through Upper Canada and Some of the New England States, 1819. Privately published. In the copy seen from the Sidney B. Coulter Library, Onondaga Community College, Syracuse, New York, 13215, penciled in the title page is the notation "Toronto, Ontario, 1961." Mr. Willman Spawn of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, has written an introduction and notes to the latest published edition.
Porter, P. A. 1900. Goat Island, in Sixteenth Annual Report of the Commission for the State Reservation at Niagara for the Year 1899. Albany, pp. 75-129.
Robinson, W. 1875. Alpine Flowers. John Murray, London, in Gardner, J. T., Director. 1880. New York State Survey. Special report on the preservation of the scenery of Niagara Falls, and fourth annual report on the triangulation of the state for the year 1879. Albany: Charles Van Benthuysen and Sons, pp. 27-31.
Roper, L. W. 1973. A biography of Fredrick Law Olmsted. Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore.
Way, R. L. 1946. Ontario’s Niagara Parks, A History. The Niagara Parks Commission, Niagara Falls, Ontario.
Welch, Thomas V. (no date) How Niagara was Made Free. The Passage of the Niagara Reservation Act in 1885. Publication of the Buffalo Historical Society 5: 325-359.