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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Harrisburg in Dauphin County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Sunken Gardens

 
 
Sunken Gardens Marker image. Click for full size.
By Beverly Pfingsten, March 15, 2008
1. Sunken Gardens Marker
Inscription. Throughout the 19th Century, lumbering on the Susquehanna River was a major industry. Logs were cut from the forests in the northern part of the state and floated down river to sawmills at Harrisburg and points further south. a popular place where the loggers stopped to recreate was the "Hardscrabble" neighborhood, located between Herr and Calder Streets on the west side of Front Street. Here thrived boat liveries and related businesses catering to the river trade. However, with the decline of logging by the turn of the Century, and the subsequent public outcry that worsening sanitary conditions along the riverfront be addressed, Hardscrabble's days were numbered. The resulting plan developed by the Harrisburg League of municipal Improvements, one of the first and most comprehensive civic-improvement initiatives in the United States, involved the northward expansion of Riverfront Park, the construction of the famous river steps and as one of the last components of this initiative, the demolition of old Hardscrabble in 1924 for the development of the beautiful Sunken Gardens. Although incorporated into the park, some of the basement grade levels of the old houses were retained and not filled to provide for a unique garden plan, formal and symmetrical in design, which has since offered a stunning and unparalleled vantage point to view the
Sunken Gardens looking north. image. Click for full size.
By Beverly Pfingsten, March 15, 2008
2. Sunken Gardens looking north.
Susquehanna River, its islands and mountains beyond.
Top Photo
1915 view looking north on Front Street from Cumberland Street toward Hardscrabble, at left, where the Sunken Gardens now exist.
Middle Photo
View of the Sunken Gardens looking south in 1930.
Bottom Photo
1940 postcard view of the Sunken Gardens prior to the Construction of the M. Harvey Taylor Bridge.

 
Erected by The Harrisburg History Project Commissioned by Mayor Stephen R. Reed.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Pennsylvania, The Harrisburg History Project marker series.
 
Location. 40° 16.021′ N, 76° 53.528′ W. Marker is in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, in Dauphin County. Marker is at the intersection of N. Front Street and Cumberland Street, on the right when traveling south on N. Front Street. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Harrisburg PA 17102, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Lest We Forget (here, next to this marker); Firefighters' Memorial Monument (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); J. Horace McFarland (about 400 feet away); “Never Again”
Entrance to Sunken Gardens from the Riverfront. image. Click for full size.
By Beverly Pfingsten, March 15, 2008
3. Entrance to Sunken Gardens from the Riverfront.
(about 600 feet away); Paxtang Manor (approx. 0.2 miles away); Mira Lloyd Dock Residence (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Old Waterworks (approx. 0.2 miles away); Mira Lloyd Dock (approx. 0.2 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Harrisburg.
 
Categories. 20th CenturyBridges & ViaductsGovernmentIndustry & CommerceWaterways & Vessels
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. This page has been viewed 2,669 times since then and 25 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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