Golden Stairs at Hedding Place

Spanning between Morris Avenue and North Place, the Golden Stairs lead from Trinity Park to St. James’ Park at the top of the hill on a path originally known as Searing Place.

Hedding Place once signified the upper boundary line of the original camp ground, which was expanded in 1872 to add 100 acres. “…it is by reason of its elevation and delightful air, a very desirable place of residence, a fact that has attracted many residents, some of who have erected very pretty cottages.”

The stairs on Searing Place lead you up to the stone water tower within St. James’ Park. A beautiful sight of rolling green fields and lush woods awaits you when you climb up the stairs and therefore the residents may have felt they were ascending a golden stairway to heaven resulting in the passage being commonly known as ‘the Golden Stairs.’ This sporting young lady appears to be on her way to the athletic fields.
For many years, walkers ascending the Golden Stairs were amused to find an archway of whale jawbone set upright as a grand entrance to the back garden of the Grant family cottage. The arch is visible in the background just to the right of this young lady so elegantly paused on her climb.
This photo of the whale jawbone arch was taken in the 1940s. Estimated to be just over 16 feet tall, the bones were said to be secured from a whale captured off the coast of California. Barely discernable remnants are the only reminder of the previous grandeur that welcomed visitors to this garden. 
This is a 1940s view of Hedding Place looking towards Wesley Place.