“Dedicated to the military volunteers of Seattle”
In 1876 the City purchased 40 acres for $2,000 from a sawmill engineer, J. M. Colman (Colman Park) without specifying purpose other than "municipal". Ordinance 642 in 1885 defined the purpose as "Washelli Cemetery" but two years later it was changed to "Lake View Park" and gravesites were ordered removed. By 1893, the Department had cleared about six acres of timber and planted a nursery supplemented with a greenhouse and hotbed. Between 1887 and 1904 the park was improved with paths, lawns, beds of flowers, settees and tables for picnickers, and children’s swings, together with native growth, the only greenhouse in the system, and the high pressure reservoir. 1904-1909 the Olmsted Brothers prepared formal plans - gardens system of macadam drives, lily ponds, children’s wading pool and shelter, combination pergola, music pavilion and comfort station, and conservatory building - all completed by 1912. Ordinance in 1901 changed the name from "City Park" to Volunteer Park to honor the volunteers of the Spanish-American War (1898-1902). The granite boulder was erected in 1952, promoted by J. Willis Sayre, editor, concert and theatre manager, historian and veteran, through the United Spanish War Veterans (designed by Cassius Beardsley).
How come no one has mentioned the water tower? This is a pretty great park. Full view of the Space Needle right from the parking lot and who doesn't want to go up into a medieval looking tower with a 360 view of the city? Walk to the cemetery next door and find Bruce Lee or hang out in the warmth of the garden. The park's free the garden will cost you a few dollars but you won't be disappointed.
The entire garden is very gorgeous. Attractive both inside and out.
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