Vancouver Spotlight

Historic Sites in Vancouver, WA

Grist Mill & Cedar CreekVancouver, Washington’s rich history goes back to the Lewis & Clark expedition in 1806, when Meriwether Lewis had the wisdom to characterize the area as “the only desired situation for settlement west of the Rocky Mountains.”

Fortunately for history buffs, Vancouver hasn’t forgotten its past. Our historic attractions, museums, and parks will take you back to learn and, in some cases, even relive some wild and exciting times. You’ll find plenty of fascinating ways to experience our past from the Native American fur trade days, to the settlement of Fort Vancouver, to the establishment of one of the oldest cities in the State of Washington. 

Pearson Plane Close UpMore Than a Fort

As one of the few cities in the nation fortunate enough to have a US National Park and a National Historic Site in its downtown core, Vancouver has many historical attractions. Some of them include the reconstructed fort with a bastion, seasonal gardens, an outlying village, and working trade houses for baking, carpentry, and blacksmithing. Set on 191-acres next to the Columbia River, the Fort is a not-to-miss experience unique to Vancouver!

In Vancouver, you can even dine in a historic establishment. The Grant House, located on Officers Row at Fort Vancouver, is named after the former President and quartermaster of the Fort, Ulysses S. Grant. The Grant House, which was built in 1849 and is the oldest residence in town, now flourishes as a restaurant.

Rich in History 

Our rich history is also evident in the parks and natural areas outlying the city. The drive to the Cedar Creek Grist Mill in Woodland is worth the trip itself and one of the reasons to visit the only stone-grinding water-powered grain mill in Washington. The mill is open on weekends and is situated over the beautiful Cedar Creek. To the east in Yacolt, the Pomeroy Living History Farm is an interactive educational museum depicting farm life in the early 20th century. Events include farm tours, a petting zoo, a working blacksmith shop, and seasonal celebrations.

The William Clark Park in Washougal is one of the great family-friendly parks on the Columbia River. In 1806, Meriwether Lewis and William Clark established camp as they secured provisions for their return trip through the Columbia River Gorge and points east. Today the park features multi-use trails, restrooms, historic interpretive elements, and of course, the beach.

 

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The Grant House

  • 1101 Officers Row
  • , Vancouver, WA 98661

Dining at The Grant House offers the ambiance and sense of history that make the visit an enjoyable experience. The restaurant has soft pastel colored walls, high ceilings, fireplaces, and wine racks, mixed in with history that lingers within the restaurant theme.…more

78th Street Heritage Farm

  • 1919 N.E. 78th St.
  • , Vancouver, WA 98665

The farm site consists of 79 acres that are adjacent to residential properties and is the largest single owned open parcel in Hazel Dell. The site has a long history of farming and agricultural research. In 2010 the farm was approved to be maintained as an accessible, agricultural, educational, recreational, community-based asset that will reflect the area's history and …more

Cathlapotle Plankhouse

  • 28908 Northwest Main Avenue
  • , Ridgefield, WA 98642

This full-scale replica of a Chinookan-style cedar plankhouse is located at the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge at the location of Cathlapotle, one of the largest Chinookan villages in the area. This Lewis & Clark historical site is where the Corp of Discovery camped in November 1805 and again in March 1806. Visitors to the Plankhouse can learn about the culture and …more

Cedar Creek Grist Mill

  • 43907 NE Grist Mill Road
  • , Woodland, WA 98674

The picturesque Cedar Creek Grist Mill is the only grain-grinding mill in Washington that has maintained its original structural integrity, grinds with stones, and is water-powered. Built in 1876, the mill has been fully restored as a working museum and is registered as a National Historic Site. The covered bridge spanning Cedar Creek adjacent to the mill was rebuilt in 1994, …more

Chelatchie Prairie Railroad

  • NE Railroad Avenue
  • , Yacolt, WA
  • Region: Battle Ground
  • Phone: 360-686-3559
  • Fax: 360-905-1746

In the logging boom days, this railroad line transported logs to Columbia River ports. Pulled by an 1841 diesel locomotive, the train transports passengers through scenic northern Clark County from Yacolt to Moulton Falls and Chelatchie Prairie and back. Open on weekends during the summer, with special events throughout the year that include casino nights, murder mysteries, …more

Clark County Historical Museum

  • 1511 Main St.
  • , Vancouver, WA 98660
  • Region: Downtown Vancouver
  • Phone: 360-993-5679
  • Fax: 360-993-5683

The history of Clark County is on display at the Clark County Historical Museum, which is housed in a former Carnegie Library. Built in 1909, this building is on the National Register of Historic Sites. Exhibits feature a Native American gallery, railroad exhibit, American military memorabilia and other artifacts dating back to the 13th century. Visit an old country store, …more

Fort Vancouver National Site

  • 1501 E Evergreen Blvd.
  • , Vancouver, WA 98661

Explore the lands and structures at the center of fur trade and military history in the Pacific Northwest. Learn about the diverse cultures who lived and worked here. Enjoy relaxing trails along the Columbia River and Village. Experience costumed programs, hands-on education activities, engaging living history events, creative media and a world-class archaeology collection. …more

George C. Marshall House

  • 1301 Officers Row
  • , Vancouver, WA 98661

The 1886 Queen Anne Victorian Marshall house offers luxurious, period settings for receptions, meetings, holiday parties, and other special events. Host your event in one of the finest homes dating from Vancouver's rich history. Surrounded by beautiful lawns, the Marshall House is also perfect for outdoor conferences, weddings, receptions, press conferences, and picnics. Let …more

Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens

  • 115 S. Pekin Road
  • , Woodland, WA 98674

Step back in time to discover the 1880s Victorian farmhouse and country garden at this national historic site. Visitors can enjoy over 150 varieties of lilacs and some rare and unusual plants and trees in the 19th-century Victorian garden. The 1889 Farmhouse, open only during the annual Lilac Days Festival occurring in April and May, contains many of the original furnishings …more

North Clark Historical Museum

  • 21416 399th Street
  • , Amboy, WA 98601

The North Clark Historical Museum shares the area's historical legacy through educational exhibits on Native American culture, pioneer heritage & logging at the turn of the century, highlighting the Yacolt burn. The museum is in the old Amboy United Brethren Church, a beautiful church dedicated in 1910, and a historic landmark in Amboy.…more

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