Lewis and Clark's Columbia River
Lewis & Clark's Columbia River - "200 Years Later"
"Dallesport, Washington"
Includes ... Dallesport ... Rockland ... Grand Dalles ... North Dalles ... North Bank Road ...
Image, 2018, Dallesport, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Dallesport, Klickitat County, Washington. Image taken June 6, 2018.

Dallesport ...
Dallesport is located on the Washington side of the Columbia River, across from The Dalles, Oregon, at approximately Columbia River Mile (RM) 189. Upstream is The Dalles Bridge and The Dalles Dam. Five miles upstream is Spearfish Lake. North of Dallesport on Washington Route 14 is the small community of Murdock. Dallesport is located in T2N, R13E, Sec.33, Klickitat County.

Early Dallesport ...
Today's Dallesport has had several names including "Rockland Flats", "Rockland", "Grand Dalles" or "Grandalles", "North Dalles" or "Northdalles", and "Dalles Port" before becoming "Dallesport" in 1937. The U.S. Board of Geographic Names made "Dallesport" official in 1941.

"Dallesport, originally called Rockport or Rockland Flats, originated as a ferry crossing between Washington and The Dalles, Oregon. From 1859 to 1878, Rockland Flats was the county seat of Klickitat County. In 1953 The Dalles Bridge spanned the Columbia River between Dallesport and The Dalles. Dallesport is home to the 660-acre Dallesport Industrial Park." ["historylink.org", 2019, "Klickitat County - Thumbnail History"]

Robert Hitchman wrote in "Place Names of Washington" (1985, Washington State Historical Society):

"Dallesport ... Town on north bank of Columbia River, opposite The Dalles, Oregon, southwest Klickitat County. Once it was a town of considerable importance, and the county seat of Klickitat County. In 1891, it boomed under the hand of Rev. Orson D. Taylor, a Baptist missionary. In 1895, he was arrested for gross misrepresentation, but was released on a technicality. Several names were applied to the place in earlier days, including "Rockland", "Grand Dalles", and "North Dalles". The present name is taken from that of the Grand Dalles of the Columbia River."

William H. McNeal wrote in "History of Wasco County, Oregon" (1953):

"Dallesport ... Dallesport, scene of the building of The Dalles Dam, was in 1859 first called Rockland, so named by the soldiers of old Fort Dalles who had to build the first road from The Dalles over Klickitat mountain to Ft. Simcoe in the Yakima Indian reservation and by the soldiers of the Yakima Indian War of 1856. The name was changed to North Dalles by Rev. O.D. Taylor when he platted the beautiful, but non existent, city there in 1890. Early settlers changed the name from Rockland to GrandDalles, after the big Granddalles rapids in the Columbia at Spedis (Spearfish), (from which The Dalles also takes its name) be-cause the latter name was more "dignified." The Rev. O.D. Taylor in 1891 adapted the name Grand Dalles for his paper city which name prevailed until the coming of the railroad in 1907 which adopted the old Granddalles name. Since Dalles City established their air port over there Lew Duncan and other Dalles businessmen had the name changed to Dallesport."

Dallesport (Rockland) in 1861 ...

Cadastral Map detail, 1861, Dallesport, Washington, click to enlarge
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1861, Cadastral map detail, T2N R13E, showing the Dallesport area, Klickitat County, Washington. Original map courtesy U.S. Bureau of Land Management's General Land Office (GLO) Records database, 2016.

Dallesport (Grand Dalles) in 1913 ...

Map detail, 1913, Dallesport, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
1913, Map detail, T2N R13E, showing the Dallesport area, Klickitat County, Washington. Ogle & Co. original map courtesy "HistoricMapWorks.com" website, 2016.

Dallesport (North Dalles) in 1934 ...

Map detail, 1934, Dallesport, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
1934 Map detail, T2N R13E, showing the Dallesport area, Klickitat County, Washington. Metsker original map courtesy "HistoricMapWorks.com" website, 2016.

Dallesport in 1937 ...
Northdalles Residents Petition to Have District Termed Dallesport, Report Says.

Word was received by The Sentinel the fore part of the week stating that Northdalles will be known as Dallesport after December 1.

The official word was sent The Sentinel by Mrs. Hessie R. Mann, Northdalles postmistress, who said: “Please be advised that the name of the post office here at Northdalles will be changed to Dallesport effective December 1.”

The short letter aroused considerable interest and a Sentinel staff member investigated further to find the how and why of the change. It was learned that a development which is now under way along the flats across the Columbia from The Dalles would point toward the time when an orderly laid out city would be thriving there.

The man who is caring for the development recently met with those interested and suggested a change in name. He went further and suggested Dallesport to replace the more widely known Northdalles.

The idea seemed to catch on and the suggestion was released in a quiet fashion. It was Mrs. Mann, the postmistress, who receives the actual credit for the change, The Sentinel learned. She circulated the petition for a change. A percentage, thought to be 60, of the patrons of the post office must acquiesce if the name is to be changed. The names were obtained with little effort a few weeks ago and the petition forwarded to the federal authorities.

The answer back was favorable and Mrs. Mann sent out her official announcements this week. The area was originally known as Grand Dalles, later as Northdalles, and after December 1 will appear on the official records as Dallesport.

Source:    "The Goldendale Sentinel", November 25, 1937, courtesy "rootsweb.com" website, 2016.

Dallesport (Dallesport) in 1946 ...

Map detail, 1946, Dallesport, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
1946 NOAA Chart #6157 detail, The Dalles (Oregon) and Dallesport (Washington). Original map courtesy NOAA's Historical Map & Chart Collection, 2016.

Dallesport (Dallesport) in 1950 ...

Map detail, 1950, Dallesport, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
1950 Map detail, Klickitat County, Washington, showing the Columbia River and the North Bank Railroad. Also showing the communities of Skadat, Rock Island, Dallesport (Northdalles), Spearfish, Avery, and Wishram. Original Metsker map courtesy "HistoricMapWorks.com" website, 2016.

Dallesport, etc.

  • Dallesport Treaty Fishing Access Site ...
  • North Bank Road ...

Dallesport Treaty Fishing Access Site, Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission ...
All four Columbia River treaty tribes enjoy fishing rights along the Columbia from the Bonneville to McNary dams. This 147-mile stretch of the river is called Zone 6. The Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission (CRITFC) operates and maintains 31 fishing sites (2015, Note: the website map only shows 30 sites) in Zone 6. These sites were set aside by Congress to provide fishing locations to Indian fishers whose traditional fishing grounds were inundated behind dams.

"For fisheries management purposes, the 292-mile stretch of the Columbia River that creates the border between Washington and Oregon is divided into six zones. Zones 1-5 are between the mouth of the river and Bonneville Dam, a distance of 145 miles. Oregon and Washington manage the commercial fisheries that occur in these zones. Zone 6 is an exclusive treaty Indian commercial fishing area. This exclusion is for commercial fishing only. Non-commercial sports fishers may still fish in this stretch of the river." [Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission website, 2016]

The Zone 6 sites include 19 Treaty Fishing Access sites (Bonneville, Wyeth, White Salmon, Stanley Rock, Lyle, Dallesport, Celilo, Maryhill, Rufus, Preacher's Eddy, North Shore, LePage Park, Pasture Point, Roosevelt Park, Pine Creek, Threemile Canyon, Alderdale, Crow Butte, and Faler Road), five "In-lieu" sites (Cascade Locks, Wind River, Cooks, Underwood, and Lone Pine), two "Shared-use" sites (Avery and Sundale Park, for both Tribal use and Public use), and four "Unimproved" sites with no services (Goodnoe, Rock Creek, Moonay, and Aldercreek).

who left their mounts at Rockland.

North Bank Road ...
The Great Northern Railway and Northern Pacific Railroad, competitors in the transcontinental business, launched the Spokane, Portland & Seattle Railway in 1905 and built a line along the north side of the Columbia River. This line was known as "The North Bank Railroad", "The North Bank Road", "Columbia River Scenic Route", and "The Northwests Own Railway". The tracks were started in October 1905 and completed in February 1908, with a celebration being held on March 11th at Sheridan Point upstream of the Fort Rains Blockhouse location. On March 19th, regular passenger service between Vancouver and Pasco was begun. The journey took eight hours.

Between Vancouver and Pasco There Will Be 43 Stops.

"LYLE, Wash., July 24, 1907. -- (Special.) -- Chief Surgeon Irvine, of the North Bank Road says there will be 43 stations about five miles apart on the line between Vancouver and Pasco. From west to east the stations will appear on the new map as Image, Fisher, Bourne, Seal, Cruzatt, Butler, Cascades, Stevenson, Ash, Collins, Cooks, Hood, Bingen, Villa, Lyle, Skadat, Grandalles (Dallesport), Spedis, Avery, Timms, Columbus, Cliffs, Towal, Harbin, Fountain, Sanda, Roosevelt, Moonax, McCredie, Carley, Luzon, Sage, Patterson, Coolide, Gravel, Plymouth, Colbia, Mottinger, Tomar, Yellepit, Hoover and Finley. He also reports the track is being blasted as fast as laid."

Source:    "Morning Oregonian", July 25, 1907, courtesy Historic Oregon Newspapers Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, 2019.


From the Journals of Lewis and Clark ...

Clark, ...

Columbia PlateauReturn to

*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

  • Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission website, 2016;
  • Historic Oregon Newspapers Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, 2019;
  • "HistoricMapWorks.com" website, 2016;
  • "HistoryLink.org" website, 2019;
  • Hitchman, R., 1985, "Place Names of Washington", Washington State Historical Society;
  • McNeal, W.H., 1953, "History of Wasco County, Oregon";
  • U.S. Geological Survey's Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) database, 2019;

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.
January 2016