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The New Milford Historical Society & Museum Collection
The Colonial Garden was installed by the Garden Club of New Milford in 1975, in honor of the country's national Bicentennial Celebration. The remains of an old stone foundation, left from an 1800s outbuilding that once stood here, was the spot picked for the garden installation. Pal Ferris and Ann Stone planned and designed the layout of this new garden space and members of the Garden Club put in many hours cleaning the area in addition to planting the multi-seasonal flowers.
At the dedication of the finished garden in 1976, it was officially named the "Edgar Williams Colonial Garden" in honor of Mr. Williams, the architect who had designed the Historical Society's Main Gallery building in 1963. Mr. Williams was the father of Pal Ferris. The formal brick walks, a sundial, cement benches, and additional plantings were added in 1987. In 2016, it was determined that most of the brick walks were in need of repair. The Garden Club and the Historical Society had all the brick walks in the garden lifted, repaired, and reset. Upon completion of this project, the garden was celebrated at a grand re-opening reception in August of 2017.
The Garden Club of New Milford, founded in 1923 by Zelda LeLacy Steele, continues to play an active role in New Milford with their many conservation and beautification projects seen throughout the town. This quiet garden retreat, sometimes referred to as the "secret garden" continues to be maintained by a very dedicated group of members from the current Garden Club of New Milford.