==History==
[[File:0226.jpg|thumb|left|Fig. 1, Charles Fraser, ''Wigton on Saint James, Goose Creek: The Seat of James Fraser, Esq.'', c. 1800.]]
[[Image:0647.jpg|thumb|Fig. 2, Charles W. Burton, ''[[View]] of the Capitol'', 1824.]]As an integral element of circulation routes through the designed landscape, walk is one of the most common terms in American garden descriptions. Walks were highly varied in their composition, arrangement, and plantings. While widths varied, a narrow walk limited to foot traffic was often called a path, while a broad, straight walk lined with trees was often called an [[avenue]]. Walks were configured in numerous ways and composed of different materials such as brick, shell, gravel, packed dirt, tan (or tan bark), and turf. From most images of walks it is difficult to discern their composition, but contrary to brick paving, which was popular only in colonial revival gardens, textual references appear to indicate that gravel was a surface commonly used. <span id="Forsyth_cite"></span>William Forsyth in his 1802 treatise recommended sand or sea-coal ashes on a foundation of brick rubble or gravel for building a walk in a [[kitchen garden]]. He noted the ease of maintenance of such surfaces, which were weeded simply by raking ([[#Forsyth|view text]]). It is interesting to note that despite changing trends in garden styles, treatises remained remarkably consistent in their advice and instruction. Entire passages were frequently borrowed or adapted from earlier publications.
[[ImageFile:0647.jpg|thumb|Fig. 2, Charles W. Burton, ''[[View]] of the Capitol'', 1824.]][[File:1192.jpg|thumb|left|Fig. 3, Anonymous, Garden plan, 18th century.]][[ImageFile:0091.jpg|thumb|Fig. 4, [[Thomas Jefferson]], General ideas for the improvement of [[Monticello]] [detail], c. 1804. The description notes “Walks in this style wind-ing up the mountain.”]]
Walks were planted in a variety of ways. They could have [[border]]s of low [[shrubbery]] or plants, as in a painting by Charles Fraser [Fig. 1], or be lined with [[pot]]s or [[statue]]s, as at [[Vauxhall Garden]] in New York in 1816. Lombardy poplars and other tall, straight trees accentuated the linearity of axial walks and the formality of urban [[avenue]]s, including Pennsylvania Ave. in Washington, DC [Fig. 2]. Such spreading shade trees as elm, myrtle, and live oak formed arching canopies over walks, <span id="d'Argenville_cite"></span>an effect that John James in his 1712 translation of A.-J. Dézallier d’Argenville called “Close” walks ([[#d'Argenville|view text]]). Although this term does not appear to be used in America, the technique, which framed [[view]]s and invited cooling strolls, was described at sites such as [[Boston Common]].
[[Image:0404.jpg|thumb|left|Fig. 5, [[Benjamin Henry Latrobe]], ''Elevation of the South front of the President’s house, copied from the design as proposed to be altered in 1807'', January 1817.]]
[[Image:0254.jpg|thumb|Fig. 6, Reuben Moulthrop, ''Mrs. Daniel Truman and Child,'' c. 1798–1810.]]
While their form varied widely, walks served essentially the same functions: to provide passage and to direct movement through the garden; to focus a viewer’s gaze toward an object, building, or [[prospect]]; and to structure and divide the garden. In colonial gardens, the walk was often the principal structuring element of the space, dividing a small garden adjacent to a structure into regular geometric shapes, such as the walks depicted in an unidentified late 18th-century garden [Fig. 3]. In more naturalistic and [[picturesque]] designs that became popular in the 19th century, walks created routes by which visitors were led to carefully sited garden structures or to crafted [[vista]]s, as described in [[Thomas Jefferson|Thomas Jefferson’s]] c. 1804 plan for his mountaintop landscape [Fig. 4] or [[A. J. Downing|A. J. Downing’s]] 1849 plan for a country [[seat]] [see Fig. #]. In addition, walks offered a means to organize the visual logic of a site by directing a visitor’s gaze to distant [[view]]s or focal points within the garden, such as [[obelisk]]s, [[pavilion]]s, [[gate]]s, or [[seat]]s. Walks could also create the illusion of distance if their designers manipulated their dimensions and layout. This resulted in an impression of greater depth, a particularly useful effect in smaller urban lots. The dimensions of walks were determined by the scale of their settings and their use. Forsyth (1802), for instance, recommended that walks be wide enough to admit a cart in [[kitchen garden]]s, <span id="Breck_cite"></span>and Joseph Breck (1851) cautioned designers to leave enough room for persons to “walk comfortably in a social manner” ([[#Breck|view text]]).
[[ImageFile:0404.jpg|thumb|left|Fig. 5, [[Benjamin Henry Latrobe]], ''Elevation of the South front of the President’s house, copied from the design as proposed to be altered in 1807'', January 1817.]][[File:0254.jpg|thumb|Fig. 6, Reuben Moulthrop, ''Mrs. Daniel Truman and Child,'' c. 1798–1810.]][[File:0539.jpg|thumb|Fig. 7, John Henry Bufford, “Fairmount from the first Landing,” sheet music cover for ''The Fairmount Quadrilles'', 1836.]]
In pictorial representations, walks served many of these same functions. In a perspective view of a building’s front façade, the viewer is often encouraged to focus upon the main entrance located at the terminus of a central walk or [[avenue]] [Fig. 5]. In the backgrounds of portraits, particularly those from the second half of the 18th century, artists often depicted glimpses through a window of their sitters' gardens, in which walks were presented in perspective with converging sides to suggest the illusion of depth [Fig. 6]. In aerial views, walks were often the principle means of indicating the location and existence of a garden, since plants, changing topography, and surface treatments were less easily rendered in plan. In other images, the walk invites the viewer to dwell upon a destination, such as a garden [[seat]] or viewing point, or to venture further into the unseen garden, as in John Trumbull’s 1792 plan for Yale College [See Fig. #]. In all of these types of images, tracing the line of the walk conveys a sense of movement through the landscape, much as a visitor might have experienced surprising “discoveries” of [[view]]s.
[[File:1041.jpg|thumb|Fig. 9, [[Benjamin Henry Latrobe]]]]
*[[Latrobe, Benjamin Henry]], July 19, 1796, describing [[Mount Vernon]], plantation of George Washington, Fairfax County, VA (1977: 165)<ref>
Benjamin Henry Latrobe, ''The Virginia Journals of Benjamin Henry Latrobe, 1795–1798'', ed. by Edward C. Carter II, 2 vols. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1977), [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/SZEEBG9K view on Zotero.]</ref>
:“The ground on the West front is laid out in a level [[lawn]] bounded on each side with a wide but extremely formal serpentine '''walk''', shaded by weeping Willows.” [Fig. 9]
[[Image:0995.jpg|thumb|Fig. 109, Anonymous, “The Espalier Walk in the Fruit Garden at Wodenethe,” in [[A. J. Downing]], ed., ''Horticulturist'' 1, no. 11 (May 1847): pl. opp. 489.]]
*[[Downing, A. J.]], May 1847, describing Wodenethe, residence of Henry Winthrop Sargent, Dutchess County, NY (''Horticulturist'' 1: 504)<ref>A. J. Downing, “The Fruit Garden at Wodenethe,” ''The Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste'' 1, no. 11 (May 1847): 503–5, [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/keywords_in_early_american_landscape_design/items/itemKey/BC9R5CZQ/q/wodenethe view on Zotero].</ref>
:“Our FRONTISPIECE gives a glimpse of this ''Vinery'', at the termination of the main '''walk''' of the fruit-garden. This '''walk''' is 428 feet long, and is bordered with an [[espalier]] rail, upon which many of the choicest peaches, grapes, plums, etc., are trained—not from necessity or for greater protection, as in gardens farther north, for all those fruits ripen perfectly on common standards here, but to give an illustration of this more perfect kind of culture, and to obtain fruit of a larger size and higher color than standards usually produce.” [Fig. 109]
[[Image:1350.jpg|thumb|Fig. 1110, [[J. C. Loudon]], Plan of walks, in ''An Encyclopædia of Gardening'' (1826), 796, fig. 549.]]
*[[Loudon, J. C.]], 1826, ''An Encyclopaedia of Gardening'' (1826: 796)<ref>
J. C. (John Claudius) Loudon, ''An Encyclopaedia of Gardening; Comprising the Theory and Practice of Horticulture, Floriculture, Arboriculture, and Landscape-Gardening'', 4th ed. (London: Longman et al., 1826), [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/KNKTCA4W/ view on Zotero].</ref>
:“6105. '''''Walks'''''. In most styles of [[parterre]]s these are formed of gravel; but in the modern sort. . . which consist of turf, varied by wavy dug [[bed]]s (1 and 2), and surrounded by [[shrubbery]]. . . [Fig. 1110]
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:“6106. ''In extensive and irregular [[parterre]]s'', one gravel-'''walk''', accompanied by broad margins of turf, to serve as '''walks''' by such as prefer that material, should be so contrived as to form a tour for the display of the whole garden. There should also be other secondary interesting '''walks''' of the same width, of gravel and smaller '''walks''' for displaying particular details. The main '''walk''', however, ought to be easily distinguishable from the others by its broad margins of fine turf.”
[[Image:0996.jpg|thumb|Fig. 1211, Anonymous, “A Small Arabesque Flower Garden,” in [[A. J. Downing]], ed., ''Horticulturist'' 2, no. 11 (May 1848): 504.]]
*[[Downing, A. J.]], May 1848, “Design for a Small Flower Garden” (''Horticulturist'' 2: 503–4)<ref>A. J. Downing, “Design for a Small Flower Garden,” ''The Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste'' 2, no. 11 (May 1848): 503–5, [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/keywords_in_early_american_landscape_design/items/itemKey/TGACWM8A/q/small%20flower view on Zotero].</ref>
:“The following little plan of a [[flower garden]], of this kind, on a small scale, is adopted from one of the designs of our late friend, Mr. LOUDON. It is supposed to be formed in a [[plot]] of smooth level [[lawn]], and to be surrounded by a boundary '''walk''', which may, or may not, be backed by a belt of evergreens and flowering shrubs. In the former case, it would make a complete little scene by itself in a portion of the garden or grounds.” [Fig. 1211]

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