Take a Step Back in Time During Upcoming Governor’s Mansion “1909” Tour

A chandelier hangs from the ceiling of the Governor’s Mansion in Olympia. Photo by Rachel Friederich

OLYMPIA – The Governor’s Mansion Foundation will host a special “1909 Housewarming History” presentation during its Wednesday Mansion tours Jan. 8 and 15, 2020.

The tours, guided by Foundation docents will feature a first person presentation by “Zephorina Cosgrove;” wife of then Washington Governor Samuel Cosgrove. Cosgrove served as the sixth governor of the state of Washington and was a U.S. Civil War veteran and educator. Unfortunately, Governor Cosgrove became very ill after his fall election and died two months after his January inauguration — never living in the Mansion. “Mrs. Cosgrove’s” January presentation will highlight the events in January 1909 when the then new Governor’s Mansion opened its doors to dignitaries and Olympia residents for the first time.

How to Get a Spot on the Tour

Mansion tours are on a first-come, first-served basis. Each tour is open to 25 guests and times are 1:00, 1:20 and 1:40 p.m. Reservations MUST be made at least 24-hours in advance. To make a reservation go to https://apps.des.wa.gov/Mansion/Mansion.aspx . For questions or additional information, please contact the State Capitol Tour Office at (360) 902-8880.

Adult tour guests must present photo identification and all visitors under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. No umbrellas, strollers, or food/drink will be allowed on the tour. The Mansion is accessible to wheelchairs and walkers. Visitors must walk a 200-yard incline up to the entrance.

Visitors to the Georgian-style mansion, situated on a bluff overlooking Capitol Lake, Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains, will get a 25- minute walking tour of the Mansion. The circa-1908 Mansion is the oldest building on Olympia’s Capitol Campus. Visitors will get guided tours of the Mansion’s permanent collection of antique furnishings and Northwest artwork, including the renowned wall-size murals of Washington scenes in the state dining room.

About the Foundation: 

The Governor’s Mansion Foundation, an all-volunteer, non-profit, non-partisan organization, hosts weekly tours of the Mansion on most Wednesdays (except holidays and the month of August). For more information on the GMF, visit https://wagovmansion.org/