The Morcom Rose Garden, formerly known as the Morcom Amphitheater of Roses, was constructed in 1932 as a project of the Works Progress Administration. The seven-acre plot of land was named in honor of former Oakland Mayor Fred N. Morcom. On November 4, 1980, the Morcom Amphitheater of Roses was designated as an Oakland Landmark and the Garden was later accredited by the American Rose Society.
Before the rose garden came to fruition, the area was known as Linda Vista Park. The rose garden itself was originally called the Oakland Municipal Rose Garden. The garden was landscaped by Arthur Cobbledick in the 1930s with the amphitheater being one of the key design elements.
The landscaping began in 1932 after a moment of inspiration at the Businessmen's Breakfast Club. In response to a culture shaped by The Great Depression, the garden was designed to highlight the extravagant roses in formal gardens surrounded by a rugged natural setting. The first rose was planted by Mayor Fred Morcom in 1933 and the garden was later named in his honor after a unanimous vote by the Board of Park Directors.
Key Facts (taken from the garden's website)