Washington State Park

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For other uses, see Washington State Park System.
Washington State Park
Missouri State Park
Washington State Park overlook 36.jpg
Country United States
State Missouri
County Washington
Elevation 673 ft (205 m) [1]
Coordinates 38°05′00″N 90°41′18″W / 38.08333°N 90.68833°W / 38.08333; -90.68833Coordinates: 38°05′00″N 90°41′18″W / 38.08333°N 90.68833°W / 38.08333; -90.68833 [1]
Area 1,800 acres (728 ha)
Established 1932 [2]
Management Missouri Department of Natural Resources
Visitation 230,983 (2014) [3]
Location in Missouri
Website: Washington State Park
Washington State Park Petroglyph Archeological Site
Nearest city Fertile, Missouri
Area 25 acres (10 ha)
NRHP Reference # 70000352[4]
Added to NRHP April 3, 1970
Washington State Park CCC Historic District
Nearest city Potosi, Missouri
Area 710 acres (290 ha)
Built 1934 (1934)
Architectural style Rustic
MPS ECW Architecture in Missouri State Parks 1933-1942 TR
NRHP Reference # 85000517[4]
Added to NRHP March 4, 1985

Washington State Park is a Missouri state park in the central eastern part of the state located on Highway 21 about 14 miles (23 km) northeast of Potosi on the eastern edge of the Ozarks. The park is noted for its Native American rock carvings and for its finely crafted stonework from the 1930s.[2]

Stone carvings[edit]

The carvings, or petroglyphs, carved in dolomite rock, are believed to have been made around 1000 to 1600 C.E. and to give clues to the lives of the prehistoric Native Americans who once inhabited this part of Missouri. It is also believed that the park served as ceremonial grounds for these Middle Mississippi people who were related to the builders of the Cahokia Mounds in Illinois.

An eagle petroglyph at Washington State Park

Most of the carvings are of birds, arrows, footprints, turkey tracks, human figures, and various geometric shapes and patterns. The three petroglyph sites in the park are thought to be all that is left of a more extensive site. They make up almost 75 percent of the known petroglyphs in Missouri and contain over 350 symbols.[5]

The petroglyphs were listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1970 as the Washington State Park Petroglyph Archeological Site.[4][6][7]

Stone structures[edit]

The park was built during the Great Depression of the 1930s by the African-American stonemasons of the Civilian Conservation Corps known as Company 1743.[8] Their efforts left the park with the historical stone structures that still stand today: hiking shelters, picnic pavilions, and the stones that make up the 1,000 Steps Trail.[9][10] Fourteen buildings and stone structures comprise the Washington State Park CCC Historic District, a national historic district listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1985.[4][11]:482-503

Activities and amenities[edit]

The park's nearly 1,800 acres (730 ha) allows for activities including camping, fishing, canoeing, hiking, and swimming either in the modern swimming pool or the Big River. In 2013, the park received some 250,000 visitors, including 3,400 campers.[12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Washington State Park". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. 
  2. ^ a b "Washington State Park". Missouri State Parks. Missouri Department of Natural Resources. Retrieved 2013-02-06. 
  3. ^ "Missouri State Park Attendance (2014)" (PDF). Missouri State Parks. 2015. Retrieved August 12, 2015. 
  4. ^ a b c d National Park Service (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  5. ^ Drew, Nancy (March–April 1993). "Ten Miles of Ozarks History". The Ozarks Mountaineer. Kirbyville, Mo.: 58. 
  6. ^ Neathery and Michael Fuller (January 2016). "Washington State Park Rock Art Site "A" (23WA01)". Missouri Archaeological Society. Retrieved 2017-03-01.  (includes photographs)
  7. ^ Neathery and Michael Fuller (April 2016). "Washington State Park Rock Art Site "B" (23WA02)". Missouri Archaeological Society. Retrieved 2017-03-01.  (includes photographs)
  8. ^ Cunning, John (January–February 1996). "CCC Company 1743: The Thunderbirds" (PDF). Preservation Issues. Jefferson City, Mo.: Missouri Department of Natural Resources Historic Preservation Program. Vol. 6, No. 1: 1, 6–7. Retrieved 2013-02-06. 
  9. ^ "Trails at Washington State Park". Missouri Department of Natural Resources. Retrieved 2013-02-06. 
  10. ^ Drew, p. 59. "One can only marvel at the effort it must have taken to shape the limestone blocks and then to place them on the hillside."
  11. ^ Bonnie Wright (1985). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory Nomination Form: Emergency Conservation Work (E.C.W.) Architecture in Missouri State Parks, 1933-1942" (PDF). Missouri Department of Natural Resources. Retrieved 2017-03-01.  (includes photographs)
  12. ^ "Missouri State Park Attendance for January - December, 2013" (PDF). Missouri State Parks. March 21, 2013. Retrieved August 12, 2015. 

External links[edit]