Governor Inslee re-dedicates the Tivoli Fountain

vintage tivoliIt was a joy and an honor for us at the Olympia Tumwater Foundation to be a part of a special re-dedication ceremony on Friday, September 8, of the restored Tivoli Fountain at the State Capitol Campus. plaqueThis centerpiece of the campus was originally donated, built and installed through the work of the Schmidt family and the Olympia Tumwater Foundation in 1953. At the first dedication, Peter G. Schmidt presented this first project of the foundation to Governor Arthur Langlie at the very same site where Governor Jay Inslee and Foundation President Lee Wojnar re-enacted the scene.

test

L to R: Peter G. Schmidt and Governor Langlie in 1953, Lee Wojnar and Governor Inslee in 2017

It was a special treat to see in attendance some of the descendants of the Schmidt family: Katie Hurley, Arel Solie, Peter G. Schmidt Jr.’s granddaughter Jeanne Phinney (with her husband) and their two young children, youngest Schmidt descendants in attendance, Dylan and Lauren. Governor Inslee paid special honor to the youngsters during the celebration.

family

L to R: Jeanne Phinney (with her husband) and Dylan and Lauren, Susan Wilson, Arel Solie and Katie Schmidt Hurley

kids 2

The celebration ceremony included talks by the Public History Manager of the foundation, Don Trosper, Mayor Cheryl Selby of the City of Olympia, Mayor Pro Tem Neil McClanahan of the City of Tumwater and a keynote re-dedication speech by Governor Inslee. don video tivoliAfter the photos were taken at the fountain with the governor, the gathered crowd enjoyed the fountain history display put together by the Schmidt House curator Karen Johnson and assistant Megan Ockerman. Foundation Executive Director John Freedman met with Governor Inslee and commented that community service has been an integral part of the Schmidt family culture of philanthropy begun in 1896 by Leopold Schmidt and passed down from generation to generation and continues through the work of the Olympia Tumwater Foundation today.

john & gov inslee br

Foundation Executive Director John Freedman (left) greets Governor Jay Inslee

photos courtesy of Washington State Archives

New old roses for the Centennial Garden

In 2016 a Thurston County Heritage Grant in the amount of $2,000 was awarded to the Centennial Garden Foundation. The grant provides support for a Centennial Garden Improvement Project that has three parts. Part 1 calls for the research, identification and purchase of several varieties of “roses of historic significance” to be added to the current collection at the Centennial Rose Garden on the Schmidt House grounds. Parts 2 and 3 involve refurbishing the garden pathways with crushed rock and replenishing the bark mulch in the rose beds. The project will be completed by the end of 2017. Here we report progress on Part 1. Continue reading

Olympia Tumwater Foundation archive items featured in Washington State History Museum exhibit

steinsvinesgrinds

Steins, Vines & Grinds: Washington’s Story of Beer, Wine & Coffee

The latest exhibit at the Washington State History Museum, Steins, Vines & Grinds, explores the history of three libations that continue to be wildly popular in the Evergreen State. Discover how the passion of beverage industry leaders connected with the unique climate and geography of our state to place Washington at the forefront of the industry.

From these humble beginnings, an intriguing arc of production began. As a territory and a young state, Washington survived (and thrived in many cases) on beer, wine, and coffee grown, produced, and/or processed in the region. Local brewers generally made their beer in town, then delivered it by horse cart. Coffee roasteries either roasted green coffee beans at home or in the local marketplace. Immigrants from many points of origin grew wine grapes on small family farms. Each industry eventually achieved large-scale production: beer with Olympia Brewing Company, wine with Chateau Ste. Michelle, and coffee with Starbucks, among others. These large companies announced to the rest of the country Washington’s affinity with the beverage industry.

kegs_snapseed

A variety of artifacts, including the first stainless steel keg, from the Olympia Tumwater Foundation’s archives are on display at the exhibit

bottles-2_snapseed

A selection of vintage Olympia Beer bottles from the Foundation’s collection

collage_1

Many photos and a bottling machine from 1896 highlight the exhibit

Washington loves to drink! Our three favorite adult beverages—beer, wine, and coffee—are practically synonymous with Washington and have become part of our cultural fabric.

Exhibit details:

  • Saturday, Jan. 21 – Sunday, Apr. 23, 2017
  • Location: 1911 Pacific Avenue, Washington State History Museum, WA
  • Phone: 12537273500
  • Time: 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM

More information available at www.WashingtonHistory.org.

Spring pruning the Centennial Rose Garden at the Schmidt House

Last October 26, I posted a blog here on fall pruning of roses at the Centennial Rose Garden. I noted that the purpose of fall pruning roses is simply to get the bushes cut down, stripped of their leaves and mounded up with beauty bark to protect them from winter damage. I also indicated that the most important time for pruning roses is in early spring – around here that would be when the daffodils and forsythia are in bloom – early to mid-March. That time is rapidly approaching so our plans call for spring pruning the Centennial Garden on Saturday, March 11, beginning at about 9:00am. Continue reading