4. The Thatched Shelter
The Thatched Shelter. Image via Prospect Park Archives
The Thatched Shelter was built 1874 on a low hill at the north end of Long Meadow, just inside the Grand Army Plaza entrance. Colley calls this building Prospect Park’s “most prominent shelter.” This Adirondack-style rustic shelter was visually in keeping with the many rustic bridges, platforms and arbors designed by Calvert Vaux for the Park, and provided views out over the meadow. A fire destroyed this structure in 1937.
These thatched and rough-hewn features made of gnarled birch, locust or oak were visual respites from the brick and stone that accompanied city-life.An old photograph shows a horse-drawn cart carrying a barrel, which sprinkled water to make the road dust manageable.