Chronicles the creation of a picturesque home and landscape on the Hudson River by one of the nineteenth century's leading authors.
During the 1850s and '60s, by far the most prominent author in all of New York State was the writer, editor, and publisher Nathaniel Parker Willis (1806–1867). Nearly as prominent as Willis himself was his Hudson Valley estate, Idlewild, where literary elites gathered and about which Willis himself wrote and published extensively. In 1846, Willis founded the Home Journal, which would go on to become Town and Country. In Out-Doors at Idlewild, first published in 1855, Willis chronicled the creation of his estate at Cornwall-on-Hudson (near West Point), as well as life amid its countryside. The land afforded brilliant views of the river and the mountains to the East. Calvert Vaux, the famed architect of both landscapes and houses, designed the elaborate and ornate Gothic Revival home, which Willis named Idlewood (whereas he called the estate Idlewild), and into which the Willis family moved in July of 1853. Here, Willis wrote a series of papers for the Home Journal documenting life at the seventy-acre estate. These papers were gathered together in Out-Doors at Idlewild, a celebration of Willis's home and estate.
Nathaniel Parker Willis was a prominent nineteenth-century author, poet, and editor. Edward Renehan is the author of more than twenty books. He lives in Wickford, Rhode Island.
"Whether sharing moments of inspiration or irritation, the book emanates with [Willis's] deep interest in and affection for the Hudson Highlands, as well as Newburgh to their north, in a way that still engages readers." — Hudson River Valley Review