Meeker Mansion in Puyallup Washington is a historical staple of the community. The mansion was built in 1890 and still stands in Puyallup as a museum and home of the Puyallup Historical Society.
Meeker Mansion has a long and interesting history, filled with change of ownership, purpose, and features. Throughout its lifetime, the mansion served as a family home, a hospital, a house for widows and orphans, a nursing home and (finally) a museum and historical monument in Puyallup Washington. Here is a quick and comprehensive timeline outlining the history of Meeker Mansion:
1852- Ezra and Eliza Jane Meeker left their home in Indiana and set out on the Oregon Trail with their newborn baby. They set off for the Oregon Territory to claim land.
1862- The couple settled down in what is now Puyallup Washington
1887- Ezra Meeker’s hops business had made him rather wealthy. Eliza Jane Meeker began to design Meeker Mansion.
1887 to 1890- Meeker Mansion was built in Puyallup and became the home of the young Meeker family.
1891- An infestation destroyed Ezra Meeker’s hop crops and took a lot of his fortune.
1909- Eliza Jane Meeker passed away and the mansion was left in the care of their daughter Caroline Meeker Osborne.
1912- Meeker Mansion was leased out to serve as a hospital building.
1915- Meeker Mansion was purchased to be a home for widows and orphans by an organization for civil war widows.
1920- An addition was added to the side of Meeker Mansion because the ladies had outgrown the space.
1948- Meeker Mansion was sold again and used as a critical care nursing home. With this new ownership, the ceilings and walls were painted and the exterior was changed.
1970- The Puyallup Historical Society bought the land and Meeker Mansion and began their quest to restore the home to its original glory. The society removed the additions and painted again to resemble the original artwork and architecture of the home.
About Meeker Mansion
Ezra Meeker was the first mayor of Puyallup WA. He also spent the later years of his life trying to memorialize and preserve the history of the Oregon Trail that he had trekked across in his younger years. Meeker Mansion stands today and continues to memorialize Ezra Meeker and other Puyallup history.
Meeker Mansion was the only house of its kind in Puyallup when it was built. Meeker Mansion was the first home in Puyallup to have hot and cold running water available on a second floor; in fact, it had running hot and cold water on all 4 floors.
The home was wired for electricity and gas, even though the Valley didn’t yet have electricity available. The gaslighting was used until electricity was available, then made an easy transition to electric lighting because they had already wired for it.
The mansion now serves as a museum with so much history within the walls. Meeker Mansion Museum is currently closed due to COVID, but is looking forward to reopening to the public.
Other Things to See in Puyallup WA
While in Puyallup, don’t miss the chance to take a walk around Bradley Lake Park and learn the history of that property as well. If you happen to be in the area in September, be sure to spend some time at the Washington State Fair, one of the largest fairs in the country, held right in the middle of Puyallup.
Photo Credit: Photo By Joe Mabel @ https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Puyallup,_WA_-_Ezra_Meeker_Mansion_03.jpg