Welcome to Tyler Formal Gardens
(Watch the Video and read Bucks County Magazine article)
Tyler Formal Gardens functioned as the “outdoor parlor” of George F. and Stella Elkins Tyler, original owners of the former baronial estate that comprised nearly 2,000 acres of prime Bucks County real estate in Newtown, Pa. Perched on a hilltop overlooking Neshaminy Creek, the mansion and gardens still afford a view that
“. . . is one never to be forgotten,”
as opined many years ago by Charles Willing of Willing, Sims & Talbutt—the prestigious Philadelphia architectural firm contracted to construct the Tylers’ mansion, service cottages, support buildings, and four-tier Italianate garden.
Indian Council Rock, which was the property‘s original name derived from a time when early Native American tribes counseled on an adjacent cliff, had all the trademarks of a typical country estate during the early to mid-1900s: an impressive mansion, an outstanding collection of art and antiques, a thriving agricultural and dairy operation on extensive land holdings, and a formal terraced garden—complete with customary features of early twentieth-century horticulture.
The Tyler mansion is arguably the grandest home ever built in Bucks County and believed to be the last of the great estates ever constructed in the United States. In 1987, Tyler Hall (as the mansion is now known) and Tyler Formal Gardens were placed on the National Register of Historical Places. By many measures, Tyler Hall and Tyler Formal Gardens are true gems of Bucks County, and their restoration and maintenance are important to the college as well as the community. Visiting this historic site is a step back in time to an era of elegance that included the Golden Age of American Gardens.