GRAY, A. DONALD (24 Feb. 1891-30 May 1939), landscape architect and designer in Cleveland from 1920-39, was born in Tyrone, Pa., son of Charles G. and Rose (Williams) Gray. He graduated from Bucknell University in Pennsylvania, and attended Harvard University, afterwards working briefly with Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., in the Olmsted Bros. firm in Brookline, Mass., the premier landscape architects in America. Gray came to Cleveland in 1920, establishing a practice in landscape architecture and designing many private gardens and estates in Cleveland, the Heights, and outlying SUBURBS. In 1925 he traveled to England, studying the gardens of great houses there. He designed the landscaping for the development of Fairhill Rd. houses in 1931, making his own home there for several years. He designed the landscape for the Cedar-Center apartments, the first federal public-housing project in the nation; for FOREST HILL PARK; and some of the designs for the Cleveland Cultural Gardens in ROCKEFELLER PARK. Dedicated to "making a beautiful city of Cleveland," Gray worked on developing the Cleveland Garden Ctr. with Mrs. Wm. G. Mather and Mrs. Chas. A. Otis.
In 1936, Gray helped preserve DUNHAM TAVERN, Cleveland's oldest remaining house (1842), proposing making it a museum. In the mid-thirties he contributed a regular gardening column to the CLEVELAND PRESS. Gray designed the Horticultural Gardens for the GREAT LAKES EXPOSITION of 1936-37, which remained north of CLEVELAND MUNICIPAL STADIUM and were named for Gray after his death. On 11 Jan. 1928, Gray married Florence Ball. They had 1 daughter, Virginia. Gray died in Cleveland and was buried in Highland Park Cemetery.
A. Donald Gray Papers, WRHS.