Located on a ridge overlooking Southern Boulevard, in downtown Danbury, the estate, known as Tarrywile, was purchased by the City of Danbury in 1985.
Once known as Cedar Grove, the grounds exhibit the eclecticism common at the time if its origin, the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century: an English park-like lawn, ornamental trees, large bordered flower beds and a Japanese Garden, which also reflect the original owners interests and travels.
The Mansion, the centerpiece of the 722 acre estate, was designed and built in 1896 by the New York City architectural firm of Childs and Deagle as the country home of Dr. William C. Wile, Danbury's first medical examiner and principle benefactor of Danbury Hospital.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places and now a Community Center and site of civic, private and business functions, the building is considered one of the area's finest examples of wood shingled Victorian Era architecture. Charles Darling Parks became owner in 1910. President of American Hatters and Furriers Co., Inc., Parks enclosed the original eighteen-acre parcel with a stone wall, created a lake, constructed a greenhouse and added a conservatory to the main house. His expanded property included woodlands, the Hearthstone Castle, peach and apple orchards, and the largest independent dairy farm in the state.
Today, a variety of magnificent trees, now fully mature, are the greatest asset of the property: cooper beech, ginkgo, pine, false cypress, and Japanese maple are but a few. Mock orange, hydrangeas, and lilacs frame the foundation of the house as they did in earlier years.
The flower beds, always a focal point on the plateau across from the portico were restored by the Women's Club of Danbury New/Fairfield, Inc. from 1990 – 1992. The Albert W. and Helen C. Meserve Memorial Foundation provided the funding. Originally installed by Mrs. C.D. Parks according to a design by Mr. Joseph Fearn, an English trained gardener in the tradition of Miss Gertrude Jekyll, the series of compartments which led to a grape arbor, contained over one dozen species of perennials and family favorites including: china asters, roses, dahlias, peonies, phlox, and iris. In the 1930's Mrs. Parks edged the compartments with low boxwoods, following the Williamsburg influence.
Ivy, myrtle, and forsythia form a backdrop to the gardens on the edge of the woods.