“On a slope over-looking the dark waters and densely wooded shore of Laurel Lake we built a spacious and dignified house, to which we gave the name of my great-grandfather’s place, the Mount…There for ten years I lived and gardened and wrote contentedly…”

The Mount tinted postcard circa 1910 courtesy Lenox Library Association

In 1902 Edith and Teddy Wharton built The Mount on 113 acres purchased from Georgiana Sargent. The entire estate was designed as a complete work of art, informed by French, Italian and English traditions, yet adapted for the American landscape.

Tinted postcard, c.1902-03, of The Mount, the earliest known image following its completion and pre-dating installation of the surrounding gardens.
Tinted postcard, c.1902-03, of The Mount, the earliest known image following its completion and pre-dating installation of the surrounding gardens.

The Mount is one of only five percent of National Historic Landmarks dedicated to women. It is an autobiographical house, one that embodies the spirit of its creator.

The classically inspired Main House, elegant Georgian Revival Stable, formal gardens and sculpted landscape represent the only full expression of Wharton’s influential architectural and landscape theories.

Hoppin & Koen West Elevation colored jpeg

The Whartons sold the property in 1911. Private families owned the house until 1942 when it became part of Foxhollow School for Girls. In 1976, the school went out of business and for the next two decades, the property, now owned by Edith Wharton Restoration, served as the home of Shakespeare & Company. Restoration of the estate began in 1997. After years of hard use and deferred maintenance, most of the buildings were severely deteriorated and the gardens were lost to overgrowth.

Facts About the Original Estate