8 Historical Gems in Clark County You Should Not Miss

With a rich and complex history, it’s no surprise that Clark County is home to several fascinating historical sites. Whether you have a free afternoon with the kids, you’re looking for a cool educational destination, or are just curious about your community’s past, this is your guide to discovering historical gems in Clark County. Let’s dive into the rich heritage of this area and uncover stories behind its most significant landmarks and events.

Marshall House

The Marshall House is an elegant Queen Anne Victorian mansion located on Officers Row. Built in 1886, the home showcases ornate features like stained glass windows, decorative woodwork, and a round turret, representing the popular high Victorian styles of the time.

Named after General George C. Marshall, who lived there from 1936-1938, the house served as the residence for the commanding officer of Vancouver Barracks during a crucial period of Western development. This historical site is now open to the public and is listed on both the Clark County Heritage Register and the National Register of Historic Places.

Pomeroy Living History Farm

The Pomeroy Farm, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, serves as a living museum that offers a glimpse into the past and a deeper understanding of the region’s agricultural heritage. This farmstead includes a working blacksmith shop, a barn, pastures, a woodlot, extensive vegetable and herb gardens, and the Pomeroy’s log home built in 1920.

By exploring the Pomeroy Farm, you can immerse yourself in the history of the area, experiencing firsthand the traditions and way of life that shaped the community. This experience allows you to appreciate the cultural and historical importance of the farm, making it an educational and enriching destination for those interested in history.

Slocum House

Built in 1869, the Slocum House is a historic, two-story Victorian home that is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. The house stands as a testament to the past, representing a unique piece of the Esther Short neighborhood’s history amidst modern developments. The story of Frances Slocum, after whom the house is named, reflects the cultural changes and losses experienced by Native Americans during the Victorian era.

Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens

The Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens, a National Historic Site, pays homage to renowned lilac breeder Hulda Klager. Its centerpiece is an 1800s farmhouse surrounded by gardens and outbuildings. In 2023, a new barn museum was opened, featuring various exhibits.

Annually, Lilac Days celebrate Klager's legacy and raise funds for site upkeep. Visitors flock to experience the charm of the Victorian farmhouse and country gardens. You can visit and immerse yourself in the timeless beauty of the garden during the Lilac Days from April 20 to May 12, 2024.

Grant House

The Grant House is one of the oldest buildings at Vancouver Barracks. This building has held a stately position on the Row since 1849. This log structure, due to its name, gives the impression that it was occupied by the 18th President of the United States, Ulysses S. Grant.

However, Grant never lived in the cabin, he occupied a room in Fort Vancouver’s lower garrison instead. This property, along with the other buildings on Officers Row, stands as a tribute to everyone who worked, lived, and dedicated their lives to the betterment of our community. Today, the Grant House, owned by the City of Vancouver, is operated as a restaurant and can be visited during business hours.

Cedar Creek Grist Mill

The Cedar Creek Grist Mill is a working museum and a national landmark. This water-powered, grain-grinding mill dates back to 1876 and is the only grist mill in Washington that has maintained its original structural integrity, still milling with stones and powered by water.

The mill offers a working tour, showcasing the inner workings of a grist mill from the 1876 time period. Volunteers provide informative demonstrations and offer bags of fresh-milled flour and cornmeal to guests, allowing you to take home samples of the products. The site also hosts various free special events throughout the year, such as the popular cider press.

Pittock-Leadbetter House

Built in 1901, the Pittock-Leadbetter House is a Queen Anne-style farmhouse. This 2.5-story, 3,700-square-foot house is a prominent figure in the development of Washington and Oregon.

It features bold forms, grand dimensions, elegant beveled glass, and whimsical details like a circular bay capped with a conical roof. The restoration in the 1980s further highlights its architectural beauty. This residence showcases the legacy of the Pittock family and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Fort Vancouver National Historic Site

Situated on the north bank of the Columbia River, the Fort Vancouver National Historic Site offers a glimpse into the transition, settlement, conflict, and community development of the American Pacific Northwest. From its origins as a frontier fur trading post to its military legacy and connection to the magic of flight, Fort Vancouver encapsulates pivotal moments in history.

The history of the Pacific Northwest is told at four unique sites, through four unique stories. You can spend a few hours in the park to explore the reconstructed fur trade fort, the historic buildings from the US Army's Vancouver Barracks, the history of aviation at Pearson Air Museum, or the walking trails.

So, there you have it. What do you think of the places mentioned above? Hopefully, this guide will inspire you to embark on your own journey through Clark County’s rich history.

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