Planting Fields Foundation Archives

Planting Fields Foundation holds archival collections that consist of papers, photographs, films, architectural drawings, and other materials related to the planning, construction, and maintenance of Planting Fields during the Estate Era and the Coe family. The collection covers the transformation of Planting Fields from a private estate to a public park and the formation of Planting Fields Foundation. It is an invaluable resource for studying the history of Planting Fields as well as the philanthropic efforts of the Coe family such as W.R. Coe’s American Studies program. There is correspondence from Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain) who was a friend of Mai Rogers Coe and blueprints by Walker & Gillette to name a few of the gems found in the collection.

Of particular interest is photographic documentation of the site: from photographer Mattie Edwards Hewitt of the early days to Samuel Gottscho’s of the site’s evolution during the midcentury. In 2021, the Foundation acquired the archive of the Long Island based landscape architecture firm Innocenti & Webel. This collection consists of landscape plans, photographs, and correspondence for projects based on Long Island and throughout the country.  The acquisition furthers the scholarship of the collection by documenting the way landscape architecture has shaped our environment.

The archives are now located in a newly designed space located in the Haybarn building, thanks to a generous grant from the Gerry Foundation. There are over 500 linear feet of materials with room to grow for future collections. The collection will be accessible to researchers and digitized materials will be available online along with updated finding aids to the collection.