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Discover Oregon’s Exciting Historic Sites

One of the best ways to get to know a new area is to learn about its history. Exciting historic sites are located throughout Oregon, but below are some suggestions for “must see” destinations.

Astoria Column

Set on the Columbia River, the Astoria Column is a historic tower set on the northwest Oregon coast in the city of Astoria.

Found on the National Register of Historic Places, the column was constructed in 1926, and is now the focus point of a 30-acre city park.

Standing at 125 feet, the column includes a 164-step spiral staircase leading to the observation deck.

The column resembles the Trajan's Column of Rome, and was also celebrated by the Astoria's Bicentennial Celebration.

Astoria Historic Riverfront Trolley

Make the most of your next visit to Oregon with a ride on the Astoria Historic Riverfront Trolley. With the boarding station just west of downtown Astoria on the northern ridge of Oregon's coast, the Riverfront Trolley yields fun-filled days for all members of the family.

Enjoy the three-mile journey as this historic trolley guides you through Astoria. The trolley is operational from May through the end of September, with some service available over spring break. The Astoria Riverfront Trolley began service in 1999. Your ride on the trolley will take you under the Astoria-Megler Bridge.

Fort Vancouver National Historic Site

Overlooking the Williamette River in metro Portland, the Fort Vancouver National Historic Site's Oregon unit consists of two houses known as the McLoughlin House and the Barclay House.

Visitors can take self-guided tours, which was the former residence of John McLoughlin. a figure known as the "father of Oregon." The house is located in Oregon City.

Historic Union Pacific Train Depot

Built in 1883, the Historic Union Pacific Train Depot, also known as the Ontario Train Depot, preserves the railroading history of Ontario and eastern Oregon. The depot has since been added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places and is one of the top historic sites in Ontario.

It also serves as a community venue for meetings, events, and celebrations. Rental options are available for guests, including use of table and chairs, the depot's kitchen, the main hall, and the basque center.

Monteith House

Officially completed in 1850, the Monteith House was the first home built in the city of Albany. Today, visitors may tour the home-turned-museum, viewing the original hand-hewn boards and Pre-Classical Revival architecture.

Recognized for its historical value, the Monteith House was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1975. Given its historical value, the living history events are frequently performed at the home.

Mt. Hood Railroad

Originally opening for business in 1906, the Mount Hood Railroad has since become a staple of history and culture for areas near the Columbia River Gorge. Found near downtown Hood River just off of 2nd Street and Cascade Avenue, the railroad travels 60 miles from Hood River – the city – to metropolitan Portland.

Although the Mt. Hood Railroad stopped commercial rail service in 1987, visitors can still visit the railroad depot for a glimpse into the railroad's longstanding history. Too, curious travels may hop on one of the three locomotives for a scenic, four-hour journey around the Hood River Valley, capturing views of Mt. Hood and Mt. Adams along the way.