Who would have thought a Stonehenge was located in Washington? Samuel Hill, the man who promoted and built the wonderful Highway 30, also built this replica of Stonehenge. Remember to keep the Sams straight. Samuel Lancaster was the architect and designer, it was his dream and vision for the many looped highway through the Columbia Gorge. It was his builder, Samuel Hill who performed the task. As a business man, he claimed good roads “..are my religion.”
Hill was a pacifist Quaker; he saw Stonehenge in England where it was thought, at the time, to be a place of pagan ritual and human sacrifice. He remarked,”…the flower of humanity is still being sacrificed on the field of battle.” He thereupon chose to build a replica of the “sacrificial altar” as a memorial to the soldiers from Klickitat County, WA. who died in WWI. He is buried close by.
It sits atop a windy hillside two miles from where he built a home, Maryhill, named for his daughter. Placed with beautiful views of the Columbia River, he owned over 5,000 acres for a Quaker agricultural colony he started. He never lived in the mansion and instead made it into a museum at the prodding of a famous actress/dancer friend of his, Loie Fuller who is well represented at this fabulous museum. Wikipedia has a load of information about this dynamic man at the following link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_Hill .
While the museum is slightly remote, it attracts a great following and support. Permanent collections and temporary exhibits, a yearly high tea with a hat and accessories auction, educational lectures, workshops and exhibits make this a must see for any art lover. It is undergoing expansion because Maryhill is bursting at the seams.
One room is devoted to the furnishings of the Royal Palace of Romania. Queen Marie was a special friend of his and she helped found the museum and came for the grand opening. A replica of her crown is here, pictures and other grand treasures as well.
So perfect was this bronze sculpture of a young man that Rodin was accused of plastering the body of the live model. He was eventually exonerated. One Eve sculpture, Rodin complained that he couldn’t get the stomach right, he kept having to change it every time the model posed. It turned out she was pregnant.
A second collection, chess pieces and boards, was unusual. It’s common to find a chess or game board in a painting or a set belonging to some famous person. Here are multiple sets of unusual variety.