The Gooses Enjoy a Picnic In The Cemetery

Mother Goose and Husband Goose have established a new tradition for celebrating their wedding anniversary! For the second year in a row, we’ve rested in the sweet country air near Spring Green, Wisconsin. The rolling hills and valleys remind us that we live on a lovely planet — not just in a suburban rectangle of lawn with a house on it.

We spend most of our days in Oak Park where the brilliant architect Frank Lloyd Wright began his long, incredible career as the founder of the Prairie School of Architecture. Everywhere we walk in our village we are reminded of his vision for organic architecture. Mother Goose is also intrigued by his scandalous personal life…

Arriving up north on Friday afternoon and needing to rest from our three-hour drive, we promptly set up a picnic in the cemetery of the Unity Chapel. Many of Mr. Wright’s Welsh ancestors are resting here as well. Mr. Wright himself was once buried here…

Resting in the shadow of the great architect.

Frank Lloyd Wright loved a woman named Mamah Borthwick Cheney. Oddly enough, she was the wife of one of his clients in Oak Park. She left her husband and two children to spend the rest of her days with Mr. Wright who, by the way, was also married and the father of six children in Oak Park.

Isn’t it strange how life goes? And trust me, Mother Goose knows all about these sorts of unfortunate circumstances…

So Mr. Wright built his dream home, Taliesin, on the eyebrow of a hill on the 600 acres of the family property. He brought Mamah to live with him there one hundred years ago. They had a love story that rocked the world in many ways, but life was good at Taliesin. It was a rich, creative time for his work. But tragedy fell hard in 1914, when a disgruntled employee set fire to Mr. Wright’s beloved home and murdered Mamah. Several other people, including her precious children, also perished in the blaze.

He personally laid her to rest in the family cemetery.

Mamah’s final resting place.

A majestic white pine tree grows near her now.

Mamah’s tree.

Please come back for the next story of Mother Goose where we doze off during the Twelfth Night.

Did anyone see where I set down my bottle of Santa Marguerita?

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8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Bunn
    Jul 02, 2012 @ 10:28:32

    Great history story!

    Reply

  2. Dianna
    Jul 02, 2012 @ 14:25:11

    Wow. I’ve learned something new today. How tragic.

    Reply

    • Natalie
      Jul 03, 2012 @ 08:08:25

      Dianna, it was a horrible tragedy. Of course, there are many books written about Frank Lloyd Wright, but I believe the definitive biography of Mamah Bostwick Cheney is Nancy Horan’s book, Loving Frank.

      Reply

  3. Three Well Beings
    Jul 03, 2012 @ 00:57:34

    I look forward to hearing more! I actually knew about the fire, but somehow never knew, or totally forgot about the tragic deaths. How terrible. Thanks for sharing some of your anniversary trip with us! I’m waiting for more! ๐Ÿ™‚ Debra

    Reply

    • Natalie
      Jul 03, 2012 @ 08:10:04

      Debra, if you ever get to Wisconsin, this is a beautiful area to visit. Rolling hills and gorgeous rivers and amazing sights! Now Mother Goose must get back to her story-telling…

      Reply

  4. yearstricken
    Jul 03, 2012 @ 20:39:02

    What a great anniversary celebration. I enjoyed the story about Frank Lloyd Wright and Mamah.

    P.S. Happy Anniversary!

    Reply

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