In Atlantic Monthly, they did a feature on the top 100 most influential figures in American history.
The famous landscape architect Frederick Law Olmstead was the 49th person listed. He gave us city parks like Central Park in New York City and created grand estates like the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina.
Other gardeners on the list include #2 George Washington and #3 Thomas Jefferson. Both took solace in their gardens in between doing great and lofty things like running a new country and drafting the Declaration of Independence.
Jefferson, especially, took much pride in his gardens, and is quotable for many comments related to the virtues of tending the earth. My favorite Jefferson related quote is:
“No occupation is so delightful to me as the culture of the earth and no culture comparable to that of the garden.” (1811)
I wonder which other influential Americans were gardeners at heart?