Trees harvested as part of a mine remediation project are gaining new life as limited edition guitars. A portion of the proceeds from the guitars will provide clean water in Central America due to a unique collaboration. Here, we tell the story of the Limited Edition Holden Village Taylor GS Mini Guitar. 

Engelmann spruce trees in Holden Village, Washington

The story begins at Holden Village in the North Cascade Mountains in Washington. A mine remediation project in the Railroad Creek Valley necessitated the removal of many Engelmann spruce trees.

Engelmann spruce trees

David Olson, a frequent guest at Holden Village, wanted to come up with a creative use for the harvested trees.

Holden Village

David contacted Steve McMinn, founder and owner of Pacific Rim Tonewoods, a company that provides wood for soundboards for guitars and other instruments. They discussed how they could create a guitar out of the Engelmann spruce trees. These trees are valuable for building instruments due to their rich sound and clean look.

Holden Village mine remediation project

McMinn pitched the idea to Bob Taylor of Taylor guitars, who agreed to make a limited edition of its acoustic GS Mini series.

Cutting up the Engelmann trees to make the guitar

Since the mine remediation project aims at cleaning up Railroad Creek, Olson and McMinn decided to bring the idea full circle by donating a large portion of the guitar proceeds to two clean water organizations: El Porvenir and Living Waters for the World.

Preparing the wood to be made into guitars

Checking the template on the Holden Guitar

Here, McMinn checks the template for the guitar.

The Holden Guitar

The Holden guitar is made with an Engelmann spruce soundboard and maple veneer body. 

The Holden Guitar

Read the full story about the Holden Village Taylor GS Mini Guitar here.

The Holden Guitar

Click here to order your very own guitar!

Playing the Holden guitar

Joe Mazza, the Director of Worship at Broomfield United Methodist Church, plays his new guitar during worship practice. You can read his thoughts about the guitar on our blog.


Photos courtesy of the Holden Village Guitar partnership.