As Oregon entered the 20th century, travel along the coast was a combination of Indian trails, the beach, and a few very muddy roads. In 1892, Ben Jones led a delegation to Corvallis to seek money for road improvements from the County. The county . . . — — Map (db m177287) HM
Conde B. McCullough arrived in Oregon in 1916 to teach engineering at Oregon Agricultural College (today's Oregon State University). He was among a new breed of college-educated engineers, and a pioneer in the movement to create a well-planned . . . — — Map (db m177293) HM
Even though Newport was only four miles (7 km) away, bad weather, poor roads, and the demands of their work combined to tie the keepers and their families to the Yaquina Head Light Station.
What did they do?
They caught, shot . . . — — Map (db m112415) HM
By modern standards, the regular routine of a lighthouse keeper was monotonous. It was, however, sometimes interrupted by unexpected moments of drama.
"Last night lightning struck the office and storeroom building.
It tore off the . . . — — Map (db m112414) HM
Before lighthouses, mariners sailing along the rugged west coast anchored their ships at night rather than risk disaster sailing in darkness. Beginning in the 1850s, the U.S. Light-House Service constructed a string of lighthouses along the west . . . — — Map (db m177190) HM
In 1866, the area around Yaquina Bay was removed from the Coast Reservation and opened up to settlement. On July 4 that year Sam Case opened the area's first resort hotel, the Ocean House, and also named the new community Newport.
The Lincoln . . . — — Map (db m177035) HM
Built by the Works Progress Administration, the Yaquina Bay Bridge is 3,260 feet long. About 220 men were employed 30 hours each week from Aug. 1, 1934 until its opening on Sept. 6, 1936. During the first ten hours after the bridge opened, 5,290 . . . — — Map (db m177031) HM
In the mid-1800s the U.S. Light-House Service vowed to improve the agency with a new dedication to structural and architectural quality in its lighthouses.
Yaquina Head Lighthouse reflects this change in values and the new focus on skilled craft . . . — — Map (db m177193) HM
Devil's Punchbowl is a hole in the sandstone terrace. It was formed by the collapse of the roof where two sea caves met, one from the north and the other from the west. Water enters the bowl at high tide, and during storms its churning and foaming . . . — — Map (db m52157) HM
Yaquina Head's light is 81’2" (25 m) above the ground and 162' (49 m) above mean sea level; the top of the tower is 10' (3 m) higher still.
Higher is better
On America's rugged west coast, keeping lights low enough to be . . . — — Map (db m112413) HM
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, three lighthouse keepers lived together in a small, isolated community at Yaquina Head. Two married keepers lived with their families, and one bachelor keeper lived alone.
The keepers worked hard tending . . . — — Map (db m177192) HM
Columbia River Lightship No. 50: Est. 1892 • No. 604 • withdrawn from duty, 1979
Point Adams: 1875-1899 • Razed 1912
Columbia River Lights: Desdemona Sands: 1902 - Late 40's • Warrior Rock: 1888 to Present (Near St. Helens) • . . . — — Map (db m177186) HM
Then and Now
(top left): From 1896 to 1906 the U.S. Lifesaving Service had quarters at south beach and launched their oar-powered rescue boats through the surf.
(bottom left): From 1906 to 1915 a boat house stood where the . . . — — Map (db m177148) HM
The city of Newport was named on July 4, 1866.
On that day the townspeople and many visitors gathered to celebrate the ninetieth anniversary of National Independence Day and to name this small fishing and lumbering community.
A tall pole was . . . — — Map (db m114246) HM
The United States Life Saving Service established a station on the South Beach of Yaquina Bay in 1896. In 1906 the service moved into Yaquina Bay Lighthouse which had been abandoned with the construction of Yaquina Head Lighthouse. In 1915, the . . . — — Map (db m177019) HM
The fish and sealife in the waters around Yaquina Bay provided sustenance for the early native tribes and were important to settlers both for food and for commerce. The discovery of halibut banks in 1912 brought a rush of commercial as well as . . . — — Map (db m177022) HM
The wreck of the Yaquina City
The steamer Yaquina City was one of the four ships that ran the route between San Francisco and Yaquina City (now a ghost town up the bay).
The ships carried freight (mostly wheat) and passengers.
In . . . — — Map (db m177152) HM
In 1861 word about beds of a rare rock oyster on Yaquina Bay spread to San Francisco. Ships came for the oysters which were served at top restaurants on the west and east coasts. Local Indians, in particular women, were hired to harvest the oysters. . . . — — Map (db m177026) HM
The South Beach of Yaquina Bay has changed each decade as regularly as the tides. The Yacona Indians set up summer camps here before the Coast Reservation was established in 1855. Lemuel Davis homesteaded a good chunk of the land when it was opened . . . — — Map (db m177023) HM
Founded in 1865, Newport has become the largest town on the central Oregon coast.
Its railroad, maritime and highway connections have nurtured its development.
Today, Newport's harbor serves mostly . . . — — Map (db m112412) HM
For more than 140 years, Yaquina Head Lighthouse has graced this headland. While the lighthouse structure has endured, the technology of the lighthouse lamp has evolved and directly influenced the community.
• Funck's Hydraulic . . . — — Map (db m177191) HM
Built by USCG Yard August 30, 1946
Retired from active service April 8, 1970
In memory of those lost at sea, and
to those men whose courage, initiative
and unwavering devotion to duty were
in keeping with the highest traditions
of . . . — — Map (db m113503) HM WM
The old Yaquina Bay Lighthouse established in 1871 is the earliest aid to navigation, standing within the range of the first recorded landfall made from a ship to the shores of the Pacific Northwest. Captain James Cook made this landfall on March . . . — — Map (db m113917) HM
Long before today's modern paved highways, rough, muddy wagon roads provided the only inland access to Oregon's coast, and travel north or south was often on the beach at a low tide.
Construction of a continuous coastal road, dubbed the . . . — — Map (db m113501) HM
Yaquina Bay Light — Oregon's shortest-lived lighthouse: Why?
In 1873, a first order light was to have been constructed on Cape Foulweather, eight miles to the north. However, with difficulties in landing, and without road transport to the . . . — — Map (db m177188) HM
Cape Foulweather was discovered by Captain James Cook, the English explorer on March 7, 1778.
The weather was particularly stormy on the day of his discovery (winds of 100 MPH at the cape are not unusual).
Captain Cook named the location . . . — — Map (db m113741) HM
Below you is the spectacular Devil’s Punch Bowl which was formed when the roof over two sea caves collapsed. You can watch the ocean waves crash through openings in the sandstone, continually sculpting this unusual formation.
At high tide, the . . . — — Map (db m92643) HM
In 1890 J. W. Brassfield set up a post office to serve Seal Rock and Beaver Creek. Brassfield also ran a hotel there. It stood by the highway, which cut through a shell mound or midden. The town was named Seal Rock because many seals once made their . . . — — Map (db m177043) HM
Local Stories to Share
The Alsea River and Alsea Bay take their name from the native word Alsi (meaning peace). The Native Americans who once lived here were removed by order of the US Government in the . . . — — Map (db m177061) HM
The Coast Reservation was established in 1855. Four years later, the Alsea Sub-Agency opened, and the Coos and Lower Umpqua were forcibly marched from Fort Umpqua to the Yachats River, a dangerous journey resulting in many deaths and injuries. Here . . . — — Map (db m177090) HM
The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife purchased the field behind this sign in 1979 to improve winter forage for Roosevelt Elk. Ground has been cultivated and planted to a mixture of grasses and clovers and is fertilized each fall. Summer forage . . . — — Map (db m177140) HM
Before Columbus sailed to the Americas, this Sitka spruce began its life nourished by a nurse log. As it grew, it shared Cape Creek with the Indians who lived just one-half mile west at their large seasonal campsite by the ocean.
When the . . . — — Map (db m114265) HM
(Note: marker is comprised of four panels)(top left panel)
The rugged shore of the Central and Northern Oregon Coast is backed by the Coast Range Mountains, remnants of a chain of volcanic islands that collided with the North . . . — — Map (db m177132) HM