Asian Gardens of the 1920s

Date: 
Sunday, October 1, 2006 to Thursday, February 15, 2007
Location: 
Church Exhibition Gallery, Lyman Plant House

The Travels of Elizabeth K. Roys

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 pagesof text, over three hundred photographs, hand-drawn maps, and meticulous plant lists. She described 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 constitute a unique historical chronicle, providing an irreplaceable firsthand account of Asian gardens in the early twentieth century.

See the exhibit.