Former School Foundations.    

Forty-one miles southeast of Tacoma, on the Tacoma Eastern Railway, in an extensive timber and mineral area, is situated the beautiflu town of Alder. The soil of the country surrounding is varied and very productive. The giants of the forest are a marvel, and to the great lumber indstury the people of Alder look for the future usefulness and wealth. Diversified farming is successfully followed and yeilds splendid returns.

Alder was platted by Martin Holes and wife, from a part of their homesetaed, on December 19th, 1905. The name is taken from the wealth of alder trees on the hills and valleys surrounding.

The town as grown steadily and now has a population of two hundred, two general stores, two hotels, livery stable, fraternal hall, church, rural telephone, one saw-and-shingle mill and two logging camps, and has surrounding it enough undeveloped resources to support a large city. The hills are covered with fine virgin forest and underlying this wealth of timber is a vast deposit of excellent quality of coal and other minerals.

Excerpt from the 1909 “Auditor’s Annual Exhibit of Finance, Pierce County

In 1942, the Second Nisqually Dam Project began. Construction lasted during World War II, and workers poured the last bucket of concrete in September 1944.  The former town moved out and the site was flooded shortly after completion of the dam.

Today there is nothing visible to suggest Old Alder ever existed, except when draw downs occur lowering the level of Alder Lake.  These draw downs lower the water level enough to expose the foundations of buildings that once stood there.

Foundations visible under the water. 

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Old stairs leading up to the school foundations.  
 Rusted metal remnants remain  

Old Alder, WA


As recalled by a local this may be the remnants of  "Grandma Wackerle's" house.

Old Alder, WA 1905-1944  

Site visit 2012


Building foundations


Old Alder School 1909

Former road that once went to Alder.

Alder IOOF Cemetery
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Pierce County Lumber Towns


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