In 1965 Edgerton Park became part of the New Haven park system and is set on 22 acres on the New Haven-Hamden border. Originally owned by Eli Whitney he gave it to his niece who lived in a Victorian house on the estate called “Ivy Nook.”
The property was sold to Frederick Brewster a New Haven Industrialist who demolished the “Ivy Nook” and built a Tudor style mansion. Because of its location at the edge of town it was named “Edgerton.” The house was completed and the grounds redesigned as a wedding present to his wife Margaret in 1909. In his will it was specified upon the death of his wife that the house be destroyed and the grounds given to the City of New Haven to be used as a park.
The grounds of Edgerton Park are absolutely beautiful as they were re-designed in the style of 18th Century English landscape gardens. Edgerton Park was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1988 and while the main house is no longer there the original greenhouses, gatehouse, bridge, carriage house and original wall still remain.
Throughout the park are benches that have been given by loyal park users with each one bearing a commemorative plaque. Another wonderful area of Edgerton Park is the Brewster Fountain the construction of which was made possible by ancestors of Frederick and Margaret Brewster.
In 1981 Edgerton Park established the Community Rental Greenhouse program which allows area residents the opportunity to grow flowers and vegetables from October to June. In addition to the Community Greenhouse, New Haven Public School students can receive an introductory tour of the Conservatory of Tropical Plants which is part of the greenhouse complex and contains a rain forest exhibit, a collection of plants from different parts of the world and a gorgeous exhibition of orchids.
There is also a horticultural library in the Carriage House that is maintained by the Edgerton Park Conservatory. For more information about what the park has to offer visit the Edgerton Park website.