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Elk City, Oregon

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Elk City, Oregon
Elk City scene in 2008
Elk City scene in 2008
Elk City is located in Oregon
Elk City
Elk City
Elk City is located in the United States
Elk City
Elk City
Coordinates: 44°37′10″N 123°52′46″W / 44.61944°N 123.87944°W / 44.61944; -123.87944
CountryUnited States
Named forBig Elk Creek
371 ft (113 m)
Time zoneUTC-8 (PST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-7 (PDT)
ZIP codes
Area code(s)541
Coordinates and elevation from United States Geological Survey[1]

Elk City is an unincorporated city in Lincoln County, in the U.S. state of Oregon. Lying along the Yaquina River east of Newport, it is on Elk City Road off U.S. Route 20 at Toledo.[2] Elk City lies at the confluence of Big Elk Creek with the river, about 23 miles (37 km) upstream from the Yaquina river mouth.[2] Ocean tides affect the water levels this far upriver.[2]


Named for the creek, Elk City was "said to have been the first settlement in what is now 'Lincoln County'."[3] A post office was established at this location, then called Newton, in 1868. In 1888, the name was changed from Newton to Elk City. The Elk City post office closed in 1958.[3]


The Corvallis and Yaquina Wagon Road Company established Elk City in 1866 by building a warehouse with a store and by laying out a town. A year later, Elk City had a second store, a hotel, and a structure doubling as a church and schoolhouse. Boats regularly ascended the river to Elk City, the last stop on the overland mail route of the time, and delivered mail downriver by water.[4]

In the late 19th century, Elk City was one of the stops on the Oregon Pacific Railroad, linking the former port city of Yaquina to Corvallis and Albany.[5] After the Oregon Pacific failed financially, fell into receivership, and went through 17 years of financial and legal complications, it became a branch line of the Southern Pacific in 1907.[6]

Efforts to restore a covered bridge over the Yaquina River at Elk City fell short in 1981. Fund-raising for repairs had produced $20,000, and restoration had begun when high winds caused another $90,000 damage to the structure. The county did not have enough money to pay for restoration or to pursue an insurance settlement through the courts.[7] The original bridge, built by the county in 1922, was a 100-foot (30 m) Howe truss span supported by wooden pilings that suffered from rot.[8] And then in August 2016 a new property owner arrived. His name is Jim Salisbury, Jim purchased the old Elk City Grange. The grange was a neighborhood gathering spot for many years. However, the Grange has fallen into dis-repair. Jim was born in Newport in 1956 and starting fishing at Bevens Hole, very close to the Grange back in the early 1960s. Over the years he watched sadly as the Grange fell into disrepair. Not one to stand idly by a piece of history as it slowly crumbled to the ground, Jim devised a plan to buy and lovingly restore the old gathering spot to its former glory. Jim has many grandiose plans for the Grange, including converting a portion of it to a private residence.

River park

Elk City Park, operated by Lincoln County, is in Elk City. The 2-acre (0.8 ha) area has 12 campsites, parking, day-use areas, and a boat launch. Elk City Park is open all year, but the campground and restrooms are closed from November to March.[2]


  1. ^ "Elk City". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. November 28, 1980. Retrieved November 18, 2014.
  2. ^ a b c d "Elk City Park" (PDF). Lincoln County. Archived from the original (PDF) on November 29, 2014. Retrieved November 18, 2014.
  3. ^ a b McArthur, Lewis A.; Lewis L. McArthur (2003) [1928]. Oregon Geographic Names (7th ed.). Portland, Oregon: Oregon Historical Society Press. p. 323. ISBN 0-87595-277-1.
  4. ^ Fagan, David D. (1885). History of Benton County, Oregon. Portland, Oregon: David D. Fagan. p. 495. Retrieved November 20, 2014.
  5. ^ Culp, Edwin D. (1978). Stations West: The Story of the Oregon Railways. New York City: Bonanza Books. pp. 82–90. OCLC 4751643.
  6. ^ Corning, Howard McKinley (1989) [1956]. Dictionary of Oregon History (2nd ed.). Portland: Binford & Mort. p. 277. ISBN 0-8323-0449-2.
  7. ^ "Elk City Bridge to Come Down Due to Damage". Eugene Register-Guard. United Press International. December 7, 1981. Retrieved November 19, 2014.
  8. ^ Cockrell, Bill (2008). Oregon's Covered Bridges. Charleston, S.C.: Arcadia Publishing. p. 100. ISBN 978-0-7385-5818-9.
This page was last edited on 30 January 2021, at 00:57
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