Maryhill

Overview

Introduction

Commanding a spectacular view of the Columbia River Gorge and fruit orchards, this town is noted primarily for the Maryhill Museum. The museum began as an estate built in 1914 by Sam Hill, a retired entrepreneur who wanted to establish a Quaker agricultural community along the Columbia River. When that plan came to naught, the site's chateau-style mansion was converted into a museum. Endowed with works by prominent European collectors (acquaintances of Hill), the museum now houses a superb collection of 19th- and 20th-century paintings, 19th-century Russian decorative art and sculptures by Auguste Rodin. Allow about three hours at the museum. Hill also constructed a full-scale concrete replica of Stonehenge near his estate, and it's open to visitors. It was dedicated as a memorial to the soldiers from the area who lost their lives in World War I. Hill's crypt is on a bluff southwest of the replica. Open daily 9 am-5 pm 15 March-15 November. Adults US$7. Phone 509-773-3733. http://www.maryhillmuseum.org.

Highway 97, running to the northeast, is a scenic route that passes through Goldendale, where you can look through the country's largest amateur-built telescope at Goldendale Observatory State Park. From there, you can continue through Satus Pass into the Yakama Reservation. Maryhill is 150 mi/240 km southeast of Seattle.

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