Location: Legion Way between Plum and Central
Local registered site
|Tree in front of Washington School, probably 1930s, detail from Merle Junk photograph, Susan Parish Collection, Washington State Archives|
Legion Way trees today (2013), photograph by Deborah Ross
The sweet gum and oak trees lining Legion Way between Plum and Central streets were planted in 1928, in honor of Olympia’s war dead, and as a beautification project. Funds were raised from civic organizations to enable the project. The first trees were planted on November 11, 1928, Veteran’s Day. Various sections of the project honor the fallen from the Civil War, Spanish-American War, and World War I. Over the years, the trees formed a canopy over Legion Way, the only such ceremonial canopy in central Olympia. Unfortunately, the trees were improperly maintained over the years and a number have had to be removed. On November 11, 2010, the city once again sponsored a tree planting effort, which was attended by notable officials as well as a descendant of one of the 1928 sponsors. The avenue is on the local register as an historic site.