Born in Carlisle, Massachusetts, Albert Davis (A.D.) Taylor attended Boston College and Cornell University, graduating in 1906 with an M.L.A. In 1908, Taylor joined the office of Warren H. Manning, whose Olmsted design legacy heavily influenced Taylor’s work. In 1914, Taylor relocated to Cleveland, Ohio, where he established his own practice and taught at Ohio State University from 1916-1926, founding the landscape architecture program there. He opened a second office in Florida, which focused on waterfront, park, and resort developments in towns such as Sebring, Daytona Beach, and Seabreeze.
During the Great Depression, Taylor participated in a number of CWA projects, including the campus plan for Boys Town, Nebraska and Marine hospitals in Cleveland, New Orleans, and Baltimore. This CWA work repositioned Taylor as a consultant to the U.S. Forest Service, and in 1936 he published Problems of Landscape Architecture in the National Forests, an important reference for recreational development in America’s National Forests. Continued work for the federal government led to the site plan for the Pentagon in 1942. A prolific writer, Taylor published articles in popular magazines, books, and reports for the American Society of Landscape Architects, for which he was a Fellow and served as President from 1936-1941.