Lewis and Clark's Columbia River
Lewis & Clark's Columbia River - "200 Years Later"
"Clatskanie, Oregon"
Includes ... Clatskanie ... "Tlatskanai" ... April 13, 1949 Earthquake ... Benson Timber Company ... Clatskanie River ... Flippin House ... Lewis and Clark carving ...
Image, 2012, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Street scene, Clatskanie, Oregon. View taken through moving car. Image taken July 31, 2012.


Clatskanie ...
The Oregon community of Clatskanie is located at Clatskanie River Mile (RM) 3. The city appeared on the official post office list as established on December 1, 1871. It is located where Oregon Highway 30 crosses the Clatskanie River, three miles upstream of the Clatskanie River's merging into Wallace Slough.

"Tlatskanai" ...
"Clatskanie was named after the Tlatskanai tribe of American Indian, who lived in the hills south of the Clatskanie River in the upper Nehalem Valley. The Tlatskanai, linguistically an Athapascan tribe, originally lived in the flat lands bordering the Chehalis River in Washington State. As game became scarce and their food supply diminished, they left the area, heading south, and crossed the Columbia River to occupy the hills traditionally occupied by the Chinook Indians, who were a large Indian tribe living along the Oregon Coast. After driving away the more peaceful Chinook Indians, the Tlatskanai established themselves within the Clatskanie-Westport area, and extended their numbers into the head of the Nehalem. The word "Tlatskanai" was used by these Indians to denote the route they took to get to a particular meeting place, applying to particular steams and not to others. White men carelessly applied this work to the name of the steam. One source lists "Tlatskanai" as meaning "swift running water." The Clatskanie is indeed a swift beautiful steam. Other names that existed for the Tlatskanai were the Clackstar, Klatskanai and Klaatshan, among others."

Source:    Clatskanie Chamber of Commerce website, 2004.

Early Clatskanie ...
In 1810 Captain Nathan Winship attempted to settle on the Oregon side of the Columbia across from today's Oak Point, Washington. Local flooding and unfriendly Indians forced him to relocate.

In 1852 four men including E.G. Bryants traveled down the Columbia to settle in the Clatskanie area. E.G. Bryant named his town "Bryantville". Bryantville became a part of Clatskanie when Columbia County was formed in 1854.

In 1871, the Clatskanie Post Office first showed up on official lists.

The Astoria-Portland Railroad arrived in 1898 and in 1918 the Columbia River Highway was completed, linking Clatskanie to Portland and Astoria.


Clatskanie in 1940 ...
From the Oregon State Archives "A 1940 Journey Across Oregon":

"Descending, the highway crosses ubiquitous BEAVER CREEK, 51.4 m. Within the next 15 miles westward the road spans the stream a dozen times. The country now presents wide expanses of logged off land.

CLATSKANIE (cor. Ind., Tlatskanie), 64.8 m. (16 alt., 739 pop.), bears the name of a small tribe of Indians that formerly inhabited the region. The town is on the Clatskanie River near its confluence with the Columbia and is surrounded by rich bottom lands devoted to dairying and raising vegetables for canning. In 1852 E. G. Bryant took up the land upon which a settlement grew up with the name of Bryantsville. In 1870 the name of the town was changed to Clatskanie and it was incorporated as a city in 1891. State Fisheries Station No. 5, for restocking the river with fingerling salmon, is at this point."


Street scenes ...

Image, 2012, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Street scene, Clatskanie, Oregon. View taken through moving car. Image taken March 8, 2012.
Image, 2012, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Street scene, Clatskanie, Oregon. View taken through moving car. Image taken July 31, 2012.
Image, 2012, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Fruit Stand, Clatskanie, Oregon. View taken from moving car. Image taken October 1, 2012.


Clatskanie, etc.

  • April 13, 1949 Earthquake ...
  • Benson Timber Company ...
  • Clatskanie River at Clatskanie ...
  • Historical Flippin House ("The Castle") ...
  • Lewis and Clark Chain Saw Carving ...


April 13, 1949 Earthquake ...
On April 13, 1949, at 11:55 a.m., a 7.1 magnitude earthquake occured in Western Washington. The quake was centered between Olympia and Tacoma, and was (as of 2002) the largest earthquake in Puget Sound since European exploration and settlement. Eight people were killed and dozens received serious injuries. ...  The ground shook for about 30 seconds and was felt over a 230,000-square-mile area. The earthquake affected all of Washington state, northwest Oregon and south along its coast to Cape Blanco, southwest British Columbia, north Idaho panhandle, and even northwest Montana. The quake's epicenter was located at 47 degrees 06 00" North Latitude 122 degrees 42 00" West Longitude.

The Clatskanie Chief, Friday, April 15, 1949, vol.54, no.26:
Quake is Worst in Clatskanie History
Most Damage Minor but Mounts in the Aggregate

"A rumble, a tremble and then a real shaking, and Clatskanie along with the entire Pacific Northwest suffered its worst earthquake in history just before noon Wednesday.

Residents rushed from the business houses and homes out into the open as they realized what was happening. Business houses, as well as homes shook and almost swayed during the several seconds of the quake.

The damage in the Clatskanie area alone will run into several thousands of dollars, despite the fact that it was mainly of a minor nature.

Three or four water mains were broken in Clatskanie and repairs were quickly completed.

Heaviest damage reported was at Mayger where the Point Adams Fish Co. station reports a loos of approximately $4,000 when several pilings were taken out by the quake and the building itself was moved about five feet toward the Washington side of the river. p> Lou Fluhrer reports his dock, which extends to the Point Adams building from his store, was damaged somewhat.

Slides blocked the S. P. and S. railway line east of Mayger but the tracks were quickly cleared.

Heaviest individual damage in Clatskanie was probably suffered at the Clatskanie Drug Co., where ..."



Benson Timber Company ...
The Benson Timber Company began operations in Clatskanie, Oregon in 1902 and lasted until 1936 when it closed its doors. Simon Benson, along with partner O.J. Evenson, were the originators of the unique cigar-shaped ocean-going log raft, known as the "Benson raft". From the mill in Clatskanie, these rafts of logs were then assembled on the quiet waters of Wallace Slough and towed to San Diego, California. Today a Wigwam Burner remains.
[More]

Image, 2013, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Benson Timber Company's Wigwam Burner on Beaver Slough, Clatskanie, Oregon. Image taken October 17, 2013.


Clatskanie River at Clatskanie ...
The Oregon community of Clatskanie lies three miles upstream on the Clatskanie River, where Oregon Highway 30 crosses the Clatskanie.
[More]

Image, 2004, Clatskanie River from Clatskanie City Park, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Clatskanie River, Oregon, looking downstream from Clatskanie City Park. Image taken February 11, 2004.
Image, 2004, Clatskanie River from Clatskanie City Park, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Clatskanie River, Oregon, looking upstream from Clatskanie City Park. Image taken February 11, 2004.


The Historical Flippin House ... ("The Castle") ...
"The Flippin House National Historic Site locally and affectionately known as The Castle is build high on a hill above the town of Clatskanie on Highway 30 just 60 miles from Portland and 35 miles from Astoria. The original owners of The Castle were Thomas and Florence Flippin who established the West Oregon Lumber mill where Tom began saving the best lumber for the grand house he was determined to build in Clatskanie. When their children were old enough to go to school, they purchased property adjacent to the school and construction began on this Victorian-style mansion in 1898. The Flippin family, which included two sons and a daughter, moved in to the house in 1900. To Thomas Flippin, building this house represented his moving up in society as a prosperous lumber man, but to his wife Florence, who had also worked in their lumber company; it represented a refined way of life that she disliked. After living there only three years, the couple moved out, and then separated. Later owners of The Castle included the Hempel and Holman families. For many years in the middle part of the 20th century, The Castle was divided into apartments. In the early 1970s it was purchased by George and Ann Salmi and was sold to the Clatskanie Senior Citizens Inc. in 1979 who own it today."

Source:    "clatskaniecastle.com" website, 2013

Image, 2012, Flippin House, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Flippin House, Clatskanie, Oregon. Image taken November 13, 2012.
Image, 2012, Flippin House, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Flippin House, Clatskanie, Oregon. Image taken November 13, 2012.
Image, 2012, Flippin House, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Flippin House, Clatskanie, Oregon. Image taken November 13, 2012.


Lewis and Clark Chain Saw Carving ...
Clatskanie's Lewis and Clark carving was dedicated on November 6, 2005, celebrating the 200th anniversay of the day Lewis and Clark passed the area. The sculpture project was sponsored by the Clatskanie Chamber of Commerce and was funded by numerous donations. The nearly nine-foot-high sculpture was created by local chain saw artist Susan Miller.

Image, 2013, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Lewis and Clark chain saw carving, Clatskanie, Oregon. Image taken October 17, 2013.
Image, 2013, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Lewis and Clark chain saw carving, Clatskanie, Oregon. Image taken October 17, 2013.
Image, 2013, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Lewis and Clark chain saw carving, Clatskanie, Oregon. Image taken October 17, 2013.
Image, 2013, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Lewis and Clark chain saw carving, Clatskanie, Oregon. Image taken October 17, 2013.
Image, 2013, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Lewis and Clark chain saw carving, Clatskanie, Oregon. Image taken October 17, 2013.
Image, 2013, Clatskanie, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Lewis and Clark chain saw carving, Clatskanie, Oregon. Image taken October 17, 2013.


From the Journals of Lewis and Clark ...

Clark, November 6, 1805 ...





Clark, March 25, 1806 ...


Lewis, March 25, 1806 ...





Clark, March 26, 1806 ...




Journey to the PacificReturn to
Menu
 






*River Miles [RM] are approximate, in statute miles, and were determined from USGS topo maps, obtained from NOAA nautical charts, or obtained from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers website, 2003

Sources:
  • Clatskanie Chamber of Commerce website, 2004, 2013;
  • "HistoryLink.org" website, 2012, Earthquake hits Puget Sound area on April 13, 1949, Washington's Online history website;
  • McArthur, L.A., and McArthur, L.L., 2003, Oregon Geographic Names, Oregon Historical Society Press;
  • NOAA Nautical Charts, U.S. Coast Pilot for the Columbia, Willamette, and Snake River, adapted from the U.S. Coast Pilot 7, 31st Edition;
  • Oregon State Archives website, 2009, "A 1940 Journey Across Oregon";
  • The Clatskanie Chief, April 15, 1949;


All Lewis and Clark quotations from Gary Moulton editions of the Lewis and Clark Journals, University of Nebraska Press, all attempts have been made to type the quotations exactly as in the Moulton editions, however typing errors introduced by this web author cannot be ruled out; location interpretation from variety of sources, including this website author.
/Regions/Places/clatskanie.html
October 2013