As a student of botany at Smith College, Elizabeth K. Roys toured Asia with her mother in 1926-27, exploring gardens in China, Japan, Korea, Siam, and India. She kept detailed records and compiled her observations in a collection of five notebooks. Created as part of her academic work, the notebooks document the gardens she visited with nearly eighty pages of text, over three hundred photographs, hand-drawn maps, and meticulous plant lists. She documented temple, palace, private, working-class, and ruined gardens in all five countries and analyzed the differing conceptions of the garden in each culture.
The notebooks of Elizabeth K. Roys are unique historical accounts, providing irreplaceable documentation of Asian gardens in the early twentieth century.