Each summer for the past 30 years or more, the rose gardens of Dr. and Mrs. Henry G. Fischer have been among Wayne’s summertime beauty spots. Started in 1920, when the Fischers bought the house on Bloomingdale and Lenoir avenues from the Mather family, their roses were one of Dr. Fischer’s hobbies. Since his death two years ago, Mrs. Fischer has maintained the gardens as a living memorial to her husband, who loved beauty and color in all things.
Mrs. Fischer’s neighbors and friends in the community know that they are always welcome to visit the gardens. This year the roses blossomed earlier than usual, so it was on the last Saturday in May that the writer received an urgent call from Mrs. Fischer to stop by while the roses were at the height of their bloom.
Because there were few other guests on this busy Saturday afternoon, the two of us had an hour or so of leisurely walking around the grounds, surrounding the house, carefully landscaped by Dr. Fischer more than 30 years ago. After that there was still time left for an inspection of the downstairs of the 75-year-old home, so large that it is only this first floor that the Fischers retained for themselves after they remodelled the structure ten years ago.
At the request of the writer for any interesting pictures or documents, Mrs. Fischer had on hand a deed executed in 1881 “between George W. Childs of the City of Philadelphia, Publisher, and Emma Bouvier, his wife, of the first part, and Harry E. Corrie, of the Township of Radnor in the County of Delaware, in the state of Pennsylvania, Book-keeper of the second part.” The pictures included three fairly recent ones, among them one of the Fischer house after a snow storm, as shown in today’s column. The other two are of the garden and of the brick wall with its fountain, which will be shown in a later column.
As the writer walked from Bloomingdale avenue that Saturday afternoon, she remembered that Mr. and Mrs. George Corrie had been the grandparents of Mrs. Malcolm G. Sausser and her two sisters, Mrs. Frederick H. Jiggens and Mrs. William Scott, all of whom still live in Wayne. They are the daughters of the late Mr. and Mrs. William D. Hughs, who lived in the old Cleaver house, located on the site of the present Caley Nursing Manor. So it was to Mrs. Sausser, who has been of help to this column in the past, that we turned for a picture of the Fischer house as it originally looked.
Although the old picture at the top of the column is faded with time, it shows the front of the house as it was before additions had been made at the back, and to the south and north. The harmony of the architecture was maintained, after the additions, by retaining the mansard roof line, popular when the house was built.
Mrs. Sausser has identified the people sitting in front of the Corrie house as her grandfather and grandmother (both seated) with a cousin, Mrs. Kate Oakford Brooks, standing. The small girl seated on the ground is another cousin.
(To Be Continued)