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Woman Boss Over 15 Laborers

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Landscape Gardening at the Michigan Central


The grounds will present quite a different appearance.

The Michigan Central is putting in about $1,000 to beautify its Ann Arbor depot grounds.

Fifteen men are now busily engaged in the work, and they are entirely in charge of a woman, who directs where every spade of earth shall be taken out and where every shrub is to be put in. 

Landscape gardening and the personal direction of laboring men seems to be a rather strange vocation for a woman, yet Mrs. Frances Copley Seavey, of Chicago, who has charge of the work here, seems to be entirely competent.

One of the laboring men was approached by an Argus reporter and asked how he liked working under the direction of a woman.

"Well, it was kind o' strange at first but I guess it's all right," said he.

"Does she really boss you around?"

"Does she? Well, don't you ever believe but what she does. What she says, goes. Why, when she ordered that fountain taken out from the east side of the depot, there was a big kick. But, what's the use. She said 'take it up', and up it came. Yes, sirree, she's the boss of the hull thing."

Mrs. Seavey was hunted up by the Argus man. She is a fine and intelligent woman. She is a writer of considerable note on the subject of landscape gardening and contributes largely to magazines. She is thoroughly practical, and not only does the designing but personally superintends the work of seeing that her designs are carried out. 

Said she: "The entire aspect of the grounds about the depot will be changed. The Michigan Central asked me to submit a plan and I did so. It was approved last July, and I have been busy collecting the material, shrubs, vines, small trees, etc. We hope to have the work completed by the end of next week. The grounds at the top of the hill will present a frame work of larger trees, and from there down to the depot it will merge into the vinous aspect. It will be my object to give the grounds as nearly the native appearance as possible. Nothing but trees, vines, shrubs and most hardy herbaceous plants will be used. At the east and west end of the depot it will be more gardenesque. But in time the big slope south of the depot will be so covered that not a single spot of grass will be discernable. Next summer it will bear quite a leafy appearance."

The Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti depot grounds will thus be as different as can be imagined. The Ann Arbor grounds will have only the hardy shrubs, vines, and plants. The Ypsilanti grounds will be a model of flower gardening. It will make a striking contrast to greet the eyes of the traveling public.