Near Oldtown in Bonner County, Idaho — The American West (Mountains)
As you look down at the Pend Oreille (Pond O'Ray) River and Albeni Falls Dam (Albany) you may be looking for the falls. In 1887 a 26 year-old French Canadian farmer living in Blanchard, Idaho, also wondered where the falls were. Hoping to discover the falls, Albeni Poirier traveled north by foot and cayuse (Indian pony). He located the falls and was so captivated by their beauty he built a log cabin at the site from which he first saw them.
This site is directly across and downstream from where you are standing.
Albeni built and operated a hotel and eating place used by hunters, fishermen and gold prospectors. He added a barn and a combined saloon, dance hall and blacksmith shop after the Great Northern Railroad completed its link to Troy, Montana, in 1892. Fishing and picnicking excursions to the falls became popular Sunday activities with travelers riding the train from Spokane, Washington. It is said that many people couldn't pronounce his last name, Poirier (Pwá ree áy) so his first name was used to name the falls -- Albeni Falls.
Albeni Falls became Albeni Falls Dam in 1955. The region had experienced an increased need for water storage and power production to support the growing shipbuilding and aluminum industries downriver. To meet these
Looking down upon the site of the original falls you see the dam and powerhouse. Storing water for power production, Albeni Falls Dam is an important link in the Columbia River hydropower system.
Location. 48° 10.815′ N, 116° 59.721′ W. Marker is near Oldtown, Idaho, in Bonner County. Marker can be reached from U.S. 2 3 miles east of Le Clerc Road, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is located at the Albeni Falls Dam Visitor Center, about 3 miles east of the Pend Oreille River and the Washington/Idaho state line. Marker is in this post office area: Oldtown ID 83822, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 2 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Albeni Falls Dam at a Glance (a few steps from this marker); Corliss Steam Engine (approx. 2.2 miles away in Washington).
Also see . . .
1. The Naming and Taming of Albeni Falls.
In 1883, two young French Canadian brothers, Albeni and Louis Poirier settled in what was then known as Spirit Valley (Blanchard, Idaho). It (Submitted on November 11, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
2. Peter Albeni Poirier.
Peter Albeni Poirier was born June 29th, 1861 in Roubille, Quebec, Canada. The promise of free land to be settled and the urging of brother Joseph was what convinced Albeni and his brother Louis to come to this area. They came driving a herd of cattle and started a joint venture in farming and raising cattle. When Albeni discovered this area, 14 miles from his home in Blanchard, ID., he sold out his half of the business to his brother and moved here to set up his new home. The Native Americans destroyed his first camp while Albeni was out getting supplies in an effort to discourage him from staying. But he had already fallen in love with the falls and had no plans of leaving. Soon after he’d built himself a homesteader’s log cabin, he added a two-story hotel and eatery to accommodate hunters, fisherman, and prospectors coming through the area. Later he added a large barn, blacksmith shop, saloon and dance hall. In 1894 the little community had the first schoolhouse of the area. The saloon and dance hall (Submitted on November 11, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Categories. • Industry & Commerce • Man-Made Features • Settlements & Settlers • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page was last revised on November 14, 2017. This page originally submitted on November 11, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 56 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on November 11, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.