General Grandison Royston was the one of the city fathers of Washington. General Royston was a general in the Mexican War, cousin of President Zachary Taylor, a plantation owner, a prominent lawyer, served as a delegate to the First Arkansas Constitutional Convention in 1836, and served as president of the Arkansas Constitutional Convention in 1874. He was a member of the Confederate House of Representatives during the Civil War.
In 1839, he planted a Southern Magnolia next to his Law Office (the office is no longer in existence) at the corner of Conway and Jay Streets facing the Main Town Square. The Royston Log House has been moved into the city in the location of his Law Office next to that magnolia. The Pioneer Washington Restoration Foundation moved the Log house from the Royston Plantation just outside of the city. The “Historic Washington Magnolia” was recognized as the state champion 1983-1996 and remains a landmark for Washington and the area. It was registered as a state historic tree in 1997 and is recognized by American Forests‟ National Historic Tree Program.
John Brooks built this residence (off of Water Street) in 1845 for the Royston family. General Grandison Royston planted another Southern Magnolia in front of his new house (c. 1843-1845). The house is Greek Revival-style house and still remains. This magnolia is quite large in its own right and is at the front driveway entrance to the house (the drive circles around it).
Location: Historic Washington State Park
Registration: August 6, 2004
Species: Southern Magnolia