Lewis and Clark's Columbia River
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Lewis & Clark's Columbia River - "200 Years Later"
"Warrenton, Oregon"
Includes ... Warrenton ... Fairhaven ... Flavel ... Lexington ... Sellington ... Skipanon ... Skipanon River ... Yellow Bank ...
Image, 2014, Warrenton, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
"Welcome to Warrenton". Image taken September 22, 2014.


Skipanon River and Warrenton, Oregon ...
The Skipanon River begins in the Coast Range, is approximately 6 miles long and the watershed is approximately 18,000 acres. The river runs through the community of Warrenton and enters the Columbia River approximately one mile later at River Mile (RM) 11, at the east side of the mouth of Youngs Bay. Downstream of the Skipanon River and the community of Warrenton is Tansy Point, the community of Hammond, Point Adams and Fort Stevens and Clatsop Spit.

Early Warrenton ...
According to McArthur and McArthur in Oregon Geographic Names (2003):

"... Warrenton gets its name from D.K. Warren, an early settler. The community of Lexington, which was laid out in 1848, was the forerunner of Warrenton and was the first county seat of Clatsop County. Lexington was a post office in the early history of the state. The site of Lexington was near the south limits of Warrenton and about where Skipanon station was situated. The name Lexington fell into disuse, and for many years the territory where Warrenton is now was known as Skipanon. Small boats went up Skipanon River to the place called Skipanon, or Upper Landing, and there unloaded passengers and goods for Clatsop Plains. Warrenton, near the mouth of the river, was platted by its proprietor in 1889, and the post office was established February 8, 1892. Development of the community immediately began around Warrenton, with the result that Skipanon ceased to be of equal importance. Most of Skipanon is now within the city limits of Warrenton, although it is about a mile away from the buisness part of Warrenton. ..."

"... There was a station named Skipanon on the railroad south of Warrenton. Skipanon was originally known as Lexington. Lexington was surveyed in 1848 by W. Hall and the plat recorded April 19, 1854. It was part of the Jeremiah G. Fuller donation land claim. The place was also known as Upper Landing. Lexington post office was established November 28, 1850 ... it was discontinued February 24, 1853. It was in operation again from April 1856 to September 1857. Skipanon post office was in service from August 1870 to April 1903. ..."

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management's General Land Office (GLO) Records database (2011) shows Jeremiah G. Tuller and Miriam A. Tuller being granted title to 611.34 acres of T8N R10W, sections 21, 22, and 28, on December 29, 1866 (1850 Oregon-Donation Act).

The 1863 Cadastral Survey (tax survey) for T8N R10W shows the Jeremiah G. Tuller land claim (Claim #43, 611.34 acres).

The GLO database (2011) shows no entries for Daniel K. Warren in T8N R10W. Daniel K. Warren is shown however as being granted title to land (earliest in 1869) in the Knappa, Oregon area. Warren Slough and Warren's Landing are located just north of the Oregon community of Knappa.


Once many communities ...

"The towns of Flavel, Skipanon, Lexington, and Hammond were once viable communities along the Columbia and Skipanon Rivers. Yellow Bank, Sellington, and Fairhaven were also within the area now known as Warrenton. Fairhaven was platted on June 7, 1914, and later vacated on May 14, 1917. The exact location of Yellow Bank has not been determined and Sellington was platted on July 14, 1913, but never vacated. Today they are all part of the 16.7 square miles of land for the town of Warrenton, Oregon, platted in 1889, laid out on a tract of 52 acres in 1891, and incorporated in February 1899. Warrenton, named for D.K. Warren, had the first female mayor west of the Mississippi. ...

Flavel was one of four ports for the Great Northern Steamship line and the site of the Flavel Hotel. Passengers came to stay at the hotel while waiting to board steamships bound for San Francisco.

The ships were also used for troop transports during World War I, and following the war, Flavel faded away. The railroad passed through Flavel, where the tracks divided, providing sidings foe the movement of vast quantities of goods both in and out of the port of Flavel. In the area of Tansy Point, three canneries were located: Del Mar Cannery, Hovden Cannery, and Point Adams Packing Company. Only Point Adams Packing Company remains in the area. ...

Several railroad companies operated in the area, and their tracks ran from Portland to Astoria and out to Hammond and Fort Stevens through Flavel as well as through Warrenton and south to Gearhart and Seaside. Among them were Astoria and Columbia River Railroad, Astoria and South Coast Railroad, and Spokane, Portland, and Seattle Railroad.

Skipanon was located to the south of present-day Warrenton, and Lexington was an eight-block area just north of Skipanon. Both of these towns were located in the general area of the present Warrenton High School. Lexington was the original county seat for Clatsop County until it was vacated on July 6, 1888, and the county sea was moved brieftly to Warrenton. The county seat was later moved to Astoria, where it now remains. Lexington became Skipanon until 1913 when it was annexed by Warrenton. ...

Hammond is located near the mouth of the Columbia River. ...   In June 1873, Bartholomew Kindred received the original donation land grant of 620 acres ...   The town was platted and recorded in 1890.

The original name of the town was New Astoria. Andrew B. Hammond was going to build a mill in the area. In 1915, the small town got a post office that was named Hammond Post Office, to honor Mr. Hammond, so the people of New Astoria changed the name of their town to Hammond. The post office is still in operation, but the mill was never built.

Fort Stevens Military Reservation, now Fort Stevens, the second largest state park in Oregon, is next to Bartholomew Kindred's donation land grant at Hammond. The navy dredged a mooring basin in Hammond and the U.S. Coast Guard maintened a lifeboat station there for many years. The National Oceanographic and Atmospherica Administration and the National Marine Fisheries Biological Field Station now occupy the lifeboat-station building. Point Adams Coast Guard Lighthouse stood vigilantly near Battery Russell at Fort Stevens, until the extension of the south jetty at Hammond. The lighthouse is gone, but the U.S. Coast Guard is present with their air station at the airport. ...

Today all these towns are incorporated into the City of Warrenton. ...


Source:    Glen, S.L., and the Warrenton-Hammond Historical Society, 2009, Warrenton-Hammond, Arcadia Publishing, Images of America series


Views ...

Image, 2011, Warrenton, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Street scene, Warrenton, Oregon. View from moving car on Oregon Highway 104. Image taken October 25, 2011.


Warrenton and the Skipanon River in 1942 ...
From the 1942 U.S. "Coast Pilot":

"... Warrenton, on the Skipanon River, has several sawmills, canneries, and fertilizer works. The Skipanon River has a project depth of 30 feet from deep water to and including the turning basin at Warrenton; thence 6 feet deep for a distance of 4,500 feet, via the cut-off channel, above the railroad bridge. In July 1942, the controlling depth was 24 1/2 feet in the channel and 16 to 19 feet in the turning basin. In 1941, the controlling depth was 6 feet from the railroad bridge at Warrenton to the head of project above the railroad bridge. ... Ocean vessels load here regularly. Warrenton has rail connections with Astoria. ..."


Image, 2011, Skipanon River, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Skipanon River, Oregon, looking downstream. View from moving car on Oregon Highway 104. Image taken October 25, 2011.


Warrenton, etc.

  • Lighthouse Park ...
  • Mural ...
  • Warrenton Waterfront Trail ...


Lighthouse Park ...
(to come)

Image, 2012, Warrenton, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Lighthouse Park, Warrenton, Oregon. Image taken July 31, 2012.
Image, 2013, Warrenton, Oregon, click to enlarge
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Lighthouse Park, Warrenton, Oregon. Image taken September 4, 2013.
Image, 2014, Warrenton, Oregon, click to enlarge
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Lighthouse Park, Warrenton, Oregon. Image taken September 22, 2014.


Mural ...
Located along the Warrenton Waterfront Trail, north side of the Warrenton-Astoria Highway (E. Harbor Street, Hwy 104), just east of the Hwy 104 and Main Avenue intersection.

Image, 2014, Warrenton, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Mural, Warrenton, Oregon. View from moving car. Image taken September 22, 2014.
Image, 2014, Warrenton, Oregon, click to enlarge
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Mural, Warrenton, Oregon. The Warrenton Waterfront Trail is located in front of the mural. View from moving car. Image taken September 22, 2014.
Image, 2014, Warrenton, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Mural, Warrenton, Oregon. View from moving car. Image taken September 22, 2014.


Warrenton Waterfront Trail ...
The Warrenton Waterfront Trail is a 4.5 mile-long trail, with two miles paved, along the Columbia River. It stretches from the Skipanon River Park in Warrenton, to the Hammond Mooring Basin in Hammond.

Image, 2009, Warrenton, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Map detail, Warrenton Waterfront Trail, information map at Eban H. Carruthers Park, Oregon. Image taken September 27, 2009.
Image, 2009, Warrenton, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Warrenton Waterfront Trail and the Columbia River, looking downstream, from Tansy Point, Warrenton, Oregon. Image taken September 27, 2009.


From the Journals of Lewis and Clark ...

Lewis, November 30, 1805 ...
cloudy morning set out before sun rise and continued our rout up the bey [Youngs Bay] -

S. 60 E. 1 to a point. land not very high and open woods a little back from the bay

S. 80 E. 3 m. to the center of a bend passing a point at 1 m. land the <same as in last course> from the commenct. of this course

S. 35 W. 2 m across the bay to a point of marshey ground which for three miles in width borders this coast-

S. 60 W 2 m. to a point of marshey ground-

S. 50 W m. to a marshey point at arm of the bay. from this point a point of highland bore

S. 25 E. 3 miles distant-

N. 80 W. 2 to a marshey point passing the arm [Youngs River] of the bey [Youngs Bay] of a mile wide --- the country to the S. E. appears to be low for a great distance and is marshey and untimbered for three miles back, from this point, the eastern point or commencement of the bay [Youngs Bay] bore N. 15 E. 3 miles.-

N. 60 W. 3 miles passing an inlet [Lewis and Clark River] of 100 yds. wide at 4 m. to a point of marshey ground, here an inlet [Skipanon River] of from 40 to 60 yds. in width comes in just opposite to the upper point of a shore which we have heretofore thought and island but which I am now convinced is the main land [Point Adams]. we asscended this stream [Skipanon River] about 2 m. it's course being S. 15 E. we halted near a small cops of timbered land to which we walked and dined <after which>

Sent out three men to examin the country to the S. & W. they returned after about 2 hours and informed me that the wood was so thick and obstructed by marrasses & lakes that they were unable to proceed to the ocean which could not be at any considerable distance from the apparent sound of the waves breaking on the Coast. we now returned and asscended the inlet which we had last passd [Lewis and Clark River] no fresh appearance of Elk or deer in our rout so far. asscend the inlet as we intended about 1 m. found it became much smaller and that it did not keep it's direction to the high land which boar S. 10 W. but inclined West. therefore returned to the large arm of the bay which we passed this morning [Youngs River], here we expect to meet with the Clt-sop Indians, who have tantilized us with there being much game in their neighbourhood. this information in fact was the cause of my present resurch, for where there is most game is for us the most eliguble winter station.- continued our rout up the large arm of the bay [Youngs River and Youngs Bay] about 6 miles and encamped on the Stard. side on the highland. the water was quite sweet. therefore concluded that it must be supplyed from a large crick. at our camp it is 120 yds. wide, tho' it gets narrower above. <about 2 miles> it rained but little on us today tho' it was cloudy generally.- Wind from N. E.- saw a great abundance of fowls, brant, large geese, white brant sandhill Cranes, common blue crains, cormarants, haulks, ravens, crows, gulls and a great variety of ducks, the canvas back, duckinmallard, black and white diver, brown duck- &c &c-





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*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:    Glen, S.L., and the Warrenton-Hammond Historical Society, 2009, Warrenton-Hammond, Arcadia Publishing, Images of America series;    McArthur, L.A., and McArthur, L.L., 2003, Oregon Geographic Names, Oregon Historical Society Press, Portland, Oregon;    NOAA Office of Coast Survey website, U.S. Coast Pilot, 1942;    North Coast Watershed Association website, 2009;   

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.
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December 2016