Tolt Historical Society Museum celebrates grand opening

The Tolt Historical Society Museum, which has finally found a permanent home in the Hjertoos House at Carnation Tree Farm, officially opened its doors to visitors July 20 with a grand opening celebration. With the historic home’s double front porch in the background, society trustee Jim Jordan, noting the celebration was on the same day as the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, thanked all those involved in the museum’s creation.

A special appreciation going to Roger Thorson, owner of the 113-year-old former farm home of his great-grandparents, Andrew and Bergette Hjertoos.

museumKim Cooney opened the celebration with the song “Homeward Bound.” At the foot of the stairs, waiting to speak, are Carnation Mayor Kim Lisk, King County Councilmember Kathy Lambert, Tolt Historical Society president Maida Ingalls, and Roger Thorson. (Photos by Lisa Allen)

The society had been looking for an appropriate home for the museum since its formation in 1983, having found temporary spaces in the Sno-Valley Senior Center and later at Carnation Farm.  After a few years sharing space with the farm’s antique buggies, the collection was forced to be moved again – this time into storage – due to upcoming remodeling of the building.  With the future of the museum in jeopardy, Thorson decided to offer the use of the main floor of the 1906/07 historic home for the displays. After months of effort by society members and volunteers, including repairs to the house and grounds and moving and organizing items, the museum is at last – and once again – open to the public.

“Thanks to our dedicated team of volunteers and all those who worked hard to prepare this house with historical displays and outside grounds cleanup and preparation,” Jordan said. “This is still a work in progress.”

museum picAn old telephone switchboard greets visitors in the front entryway of the museum.

Jordan also credited 4Culture for its financial support, the Snoqualmie Tribe for their grant to make repairs and upgrade the museum storage facility behind the museum, the city of Carnation for providing a space for their archive files in the City Hall complex and Bill Whitaker and the Whitaker Foundation for their two grants to help make safety modifications and building repairs to the exterior of the house. The Carnation Tree Farm, which operated as a dairy until 1954, was named to the National Register of Historic Places in 2002.

Museum hours are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays through September.  The address is 31523 NE 40th Street, Carnation.

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