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University of Washington, Botanic Gardens
The Washington Park Arboretum was established in 1934 by an agreement approved by both the University of Washington (Board of Regents) and the City of Seattle (City Council/Mayor). The City of Seattle held title to a 200+ acre park known as Washington Park located in a central portion of the city. It agreed that the University could design, construct, plant, and manage an Arboretum and Botanical Garden in this park. The Arboretum Foundation was founded in 1935 and has been an active support group ever since. In 1936, the Seattle Garden Club donated $3000 to hire James F. Dawson and Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr. of the Olmsted Brothers landscape firm to design the first planting plan. Mr. Dawson was the chief designer of the plan. During those early years when the nation was in deep depression, 500 men in the Public Works Administration constructed many of the historical features; e.g., the Stone Cottage, and Azalea Way. The Dawson plan followed the typical phylogenetic progression of families from primitive to advanced, as accepted in that day.
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