What do you give someone who has everything? In 1957, Marjorie Post’s closest friends solved this problem with a joyous English garden path affectionately called the Friendship Walk.
Beginning at the Rose Garden and meandering to a crest overlooking Rock Creek Park, this secluded path is flanked by boxwood, rhododendrons, and azaleas. Shaded by magnolia, white pine, and American Holly trees, the path ends at the Four Seasons Overlook.
A secret committee, including Frances Rosso, Lady Constance Lewis, and Sadie Pratt, devised the Friendship Walk as a way to celebrate Marjorie’s seventieth birthday and honor her remarkable philanthropic contributions. With the help of her chief gardener and landscape architect Perry Wheeler, and with contributions by 181 friends, in November of 1957 the astonished heiress was led to a pair of gates off the Rose garden. There lay a marble plaque set into the ground that read, “Friendship Walk – Hillwood – Prepared by her friends – a tribute to Marjorie Merriweather Post for her generous nature, love of beauty, and devotion to human needs.” Marjorie regularly showed the Friendship Walk to visitors and often slipped off to the path for solitary contemplation.