The 100th Anniversary of the establishment of Letchworth Park will be celebrated this year and on into 2007 as well. This causes us to look back to the last celebration of the founding of the Park and we find an interesting item that commemorates the 60th. It has been right there under our noses on that much traveled plaza in front of Glen Iris Inn and yet as much as we have admired the plaque we have never paid enough attention to the "fine print" at the bottom that says :
We find that the text of the plaque was written, and the design of the wall section where it rests, were done by a little known individual who devoted his entire career to the Park Commission. Frederick W Short was Senior Landscape Architect in the park from l935 until 1971 when he retired. Fred passed away in June of 1999 but is fondly remembered by all of us who worked with him. Jan Vrooman, who succeeded Fred, remembers Fred as very professional and the quality of his work was very high. His work began with the CCC when he prepared plans and specifications for park structures, roads, parking lots and campgrounds. He also drew many planting plans for the Lake Ontario State Parkway (another facility that falls under the jurisdiction of the Park Region). Jan state that Fred enjoyed gardening, drawing, painting and - most unusual for such a quiet reserved individual - was his love of flying gliders at the Dansville airport. He made his own Christmas cards with woodcuts he carved himself.
We thank Jan Vrooman for sending us his memories of Fred Short!