Listed in the national register for historic places, the twelve room dwelling was built
at the turn of the century by the Ashfords. It is located on Mount Tahoma Canyon Road in
Ashford, 7 miles from the Nisqually entrance to Mount Rainier National Park.
The setting is delightful against a background of giant evergreens with a lower porch
extending three quarters of the way around the house, a veranda on each end of the second
floor, and a stream bubbling a few feet from the house.
Built of solid grain Douglas fir, the outward appearance of the house has changed little
from its original 1903 configuration, after over one hundred years of continuous use. It
stands to remind us of the legacy of the Ashfords and the northwest settlers.
The Ashford Story
The Ashfords homesteaded in the Nisqually Valley in 1880. By 1891, they had filed for and
established the town site of Ashford.
In the early years, three trains daily made their final stop in Ashford, with tourists for
the recently established Mount Rainer National park. For years, until supplanted by the automobile,
Mr. Ashford drove a horse drawn buggy to headquarters in Longmire. Part of the original old pony trail
is still to be seen east of the home.
An Ashford daughter, Zina, married W.S. Van Dyke, who was to become MGM's leading movie director
throughout the 1920's and 30's. He was responsible for many epic productions, including Marie Antoinette,
Trader Horn, and the Jeannette MacDonald, Nelson Eddy productions which are still to be seen on televisions
to this day. Mr. Ashford financed the couple’s move to Hollywood in 1914, and was thus responsible for one of
movieland's most illustrious careers.
The elder Ashfords both died in the mid-thirties and the mansion was then acquired by their youngest daughter,
Mildred, who went on to marry Mr. James C. Beech, a respected World War II pilot.
After the death of Mildred Ashford Beech in 1967, the mansion passed through several different owners.
After spending time as a private residence, as well as an English-style Bed & Breakfast, the mansion
came into the possession of its current owner, Mr. Willard Jones, who has taken great care to restore
the mansion and ensure its continued longevity for generations to come.
© 2005-2010, The Ashford Mansion
30715 Mount Tahoma Canyon Road
Ashford, WA 98304