"In 1908 Samuel Hill (1857-1931) bought 7,000 acres on these slopes. He planned a Quaker farming colony, surveyed a 34-block townsite and built a church, hotel, store, offices, garage and shops. His engineers built ten miles of experimental roads; as Washington's first rural paved roads they proved Hill's zeal as a promoter of highways. Three miles to the west he began construction of an old-world chateau, which in 1940 was completed as the Maryhill Museum of Art. In 1918-1929 Hill constructed the Stonehenge replica, America's first World War I memorial, on the original site of his hotel. Fire eventually destroyed the buildings -- never occupied townsite, leaving only Stonehenge, roads and and stonework, and the Museum s monuments to the vision and energy of this public-spirited American." (This is from the road-side information sign near the museum.)
The original town site is now the home of Maryhill State Park (where the trees are on the riverbank, near the bridge). There is also Peach Beach R.V. park, orchards, a historic church, a winery, and a small fishing village. Cary and I spent four days there last week, and it was really quite beautiful.
On Wednesday, we made the short drive up the hill to Stonehenge. After the town of Maryhill burned to the ground, Stonehenge was the only thing left standing there. Sam Hill decided to relocate it a couple of miles away, to a spot with commanding views.
Maryhill Stonehenge is now managed by the Maryhill Museum. In addition to the Stonehenge replica on this site, there is another war memorial, an unoccupied grocery store, an old building and Sam Hill's headstone. More photos are headed your way as soon as I can get them organized and edited.
This post has a lot of pictures in it and they can easily be enlarged by just clicking on them.
Sam Hill was a Quaker and a pacifist, and he hated war and the inevitable loss of life. He had visited the original Stonehenge during WWI and conceived his idea of making one of his own. Sam built his smaller version as a war memorial to those in killed in WWI who lived in Klickitat County, Washington. It is constructed out of concrete instead of stone. It took Sam Hill twelve years to complete this replica of the world famous Stonehenge in England, from 1918-1929.
It was Sam's understanding that the original Stonehenge was a place where the Druids held human sacrifices to appease their gods. It has since be determined that Stonehenge is actually a astrological tool instead.
We met some sisters who were visiting the memorial at the same time that we were. One was from Spokane and the other from New Hampshire.
I took pictures of the plaques on the wall of the soldiers who were honored here:
So, there you go! A bit of history and a bunch of pictures. Stay tuned for more of "What in Sam Hill are those Matthews up to now?"
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