I stumbled upon this park quite unintentionally, last Thursday, while I was delivering some photographic equipment that I had sold through Kijiji. The buyer had no way of picking up the gear, and when we established that he lived not too far off my route to and from work, I decided to drop off the equipment on my way home.
The park is nestled in the easternmost part of Lowertown, tucked south of St.Patrick Street, north of Rideau Street, and just west of the Rideau River. Macdonald Gardens Park, one of Ottawa's oldest parks*, was built in 1914 but was originally a cemetery that was closed in the 1870s. Some of the cemetery's residents are still located under the earth—a 1936 newspaper story reported of a skull* rolling down the street during some landscaping work.
The so-called "summer house", also known as the "Hill of Bones*," is a stone hexagonal gazebo that rests atop a small hill on the western half of the park and allows you to look toward downtown, where you can see the Byward Market and the library behind Parliament.
The gazebo is also the location of yesterday's Where In Ottawa photo challenge. (I would have accepted any naming of the structure or the name of the park.)
Congratulations to Tina Klein Walsh, who solved the challenge in about seven minutes.
Macdonald Gardens Park has only recently been designated as a heritage site. It is surrounded by beautiful old homes, tall apartment buildings, and the Turkish Embassy. It's a pleasant quiet neighbourhood.
As quiet as the grave*.
The next Where In Ottawa is Monday, October 2. I'll have a giveaway for that contest.
* These were going to be used as clues. Oh well...