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Skamania County was founded in 1854 from Clark County. Its name means "swift water." It is located in the southern part of the state and is bordered on the south by the Columbia River. The county is bisected north and south by the Cascade Mountains and contains Mount St. Helens, the most active volcano in the continental United States. The county is heavily forested and its economy depends primarily on logging and the wood products industry. Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River touches Skamania County and gave impetus to the county's economy. Fishing on the river has also provided a source of income to the county.

NOTE: Skamania county was created March 9, 1854 and was later abolished by the Legislature on January 14, 1865. The county was divided into Clark and Klickitat counties. One year later, January 31, 1867, the abolition was revoked and Skamania County was re-established.

Bounded by: Lewis County (N), Yakima and Klickitat counties (E), Oregon (S), and Clark and Cowlitz counties (W).

County Seat: Cascades or Lower Cascades (1854-1893), Stevenson (1893-present)

Chamber(s) of Commerce:

Skamania County Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center, 2nd St & SR 14, PO Box 1037, Stevenson, WA 98648. Phone 509-427-8911. Fax 509-427-5122.

Courthouse: 240 NW Vancouver St, PO Box 790, Stevenson, WA 98648-0790. Courthouse hours: Monday through Friday, 8:30am to 5:00pm.

Assessor: Phone 509-427-9400. Fax 509-427-4165. Need to know legal description of property or parcel number - no name index available.

Auditor: Phone 509-427-9426. Fax 509-427-4165.

Clerk: Phone 509-427-9431. Fax 509-427-7386.

Treasurer: Phone 509-427-9410. Fax 509-427-4165. Need name or parcel number or be able to locate property on a map for office to be able to assist. Call ahead to schedule assistance if the research project is large.

Genealogical Society:

Health Department / District:

Southwest Washington Health District (Clark, Skamania and Klickitat counties), 2000 Ft. Vancouver Way, PO Box 1870, Vancouver, WA 98663. Phone 360-696-9215. Fax 360-696-8424. Satellite office: Stevenson/Skamania County Health Center, Mile Post 96L - Second St Extension, PO Box 162, Stevenson, WA 98648. Phone 509-427-5138. Fax 509-427-5272.

Historical Society:

Skamania County Historical Society, PO Box 396, Stevenson, WA 98648. Membership available. Operates the Columbia Gorge Interpretive Center. Their special collections include some vital, census and tax records, a photography collection, and an oral history collection.

Libraries - Academic:

Libraries - Public:

Fort Vancouver Regional Library, 1007 E Mill Plain Blvd, Vancouver (Clark County), WA 98663-3599. The following libraries are part of this system:

North Bonneville Community Library, M-17 Cascade Dr, PO Box 99, North Bonneville, WA 98639. Phone 509-427-4439.

Stevenson Community Library, 120 NW Vancouver Ave, PO Box 818, Stevenson, WA 98648. Phone 509-427-5471. Fax 509-427-4830.

Libraries - Special:

Skamania County Law Library, County Courthouse, Stevenson, WA 98648. Phone 509-427-9405.

Museums and Historical Sites:

Bonneville Lock & Dam Visitor Center, SR 14, Stevenson, WA 98648. In addition to the Dam Visitor's Center, nearby is Fort Cascades National Historic Site. A walking tour visits the sites of early Skamania and Columbia Gorge history.

Columbia George Interpretive Center, 990 SW Rock Creek Dr, PO Box 396, Stevenson, WA 98648. Phone 509-427-8211. The mission of the Center is to preserve, conserve, exhibit and interpret the cultural and natural history of the Columbia River Gorge.

State Archive Branch:

Southwest Region (Clark, Cowlitz, Grays Harbor, Lewis, Mason, Pacific, Skamania, Thurston and Wahkiakum counties). 1120 Washington St. SE, PO Box 40238, Olympia, WA 98504-0238. Phone 360-753-1684. Fax 360-664-8814. Research Hours: 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 noon and 1:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.


SELECTIVE BIBLIOGRAPHY

ATLASES, GAZETTEERS, MAPS - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

ATLASES, GAZETTEERS, MAPS - Published sources

Metsker, Charles Frederick. Metsker's atlas of Skamania county, Washington. C. F. Metsker, 1942.

Metsker, Charles Frederick. Metsker's atlas of Skamania county, Washington. Metsker Maps, 1956.

BIBLES - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

BIBLES - Published sources

BIBLIOGRAPHIES - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

BIBLIOGRAPHIES - Published sources

BIOGRAPHIES / DIARIES - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

BIOGRAPHIES / DIARIES - Published sources

DeWater, Lois L. Willard (Lois Lusetta Willard). Lois : a narrative of the life and times of the Willard family at Willard, Washington. Wilderness Valley Pub. Co., 1985.

BIRTHS - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

BIRTHS - Published sources

Ramsay, Mrs. D. L. Birth records to June 4, 1907 on record in the Auditorís Office, Skamania County, Washington. Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 1977.

Ramsay, Daphne Hon. Skamania County, Washington births 1893-1926: deeds & miscellaneous records 1855-1894. Clark County Genealogical Society, 1987.

Skamania County records of births, marriages, early wills, probate administrations, deeds and miscellaneous records to 1892, and cemeteries of Skamania County. Skamania County,Wash., 1966.

BUSINESSES & COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

BUSINESSES & COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS - Published sources

CEMETERIES - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

CEMETERIES - Published sources

Cemetery records of Mount Pleasant, Cascade, Carson, Saint Martin, Bergs, Iman, Eyman, Euman, Old Bevans, Stevenson IOOF, Christ-Zada cemeteries. Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 1961.

Ramsay, Daphne Hon. Cemetery records of Skamania County, Washington. D. Ramsay, 1980?.

_______. Skamania County, Washington cemetery records. Clark County Genealogical Society, 1987.

CENSUS - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

CENSUS - Published sources

Moyer, John B., Mrs. Census records of Skamania County, Washington Territory, 1860, 1870, 1880, 1885 and 1887. D. M. Ramsay, 1979?.

_______, comp. Statistics of the first federal census of Washington Territory 1860. Genealogical Records Committee, Daughters of the American Revolution, 193?.

Ramsay, Daphne Hon. Skamania County, Washington census records : 1860, 1870, 1880, 1885, 1887. 2nd ed. Clark County Genealogical Society, 1987.

_______, comp. Statistics of the 1870 & 1880 census of Skamania County, Washington Territory. Ramsay?, 1975?.

_______. Territorial auditors census, Skamania County, Washington Territory. Daphne M. Ramsay, 1975?.

United States. Census Office. 8th census, 1860. Washington [Territory]. Vol. 1: Population schedules. Photographed in microfilm lab., Bureau of Census, n.d.

CHURCHES - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

CHURCHES - Published sources

Church directory for Klickitat and Skamania Counties. The Council, 1985.

CITY / COUNTY DIRECTORIES

CITY / COUNTY HISTORIES - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

CITY / COUNTY HISTORIES - Published sources

Evergreen State College. Urban Planning Group. North Bonneville relocation planning study. The Group, 1973.

History of Skamania County. History Committee, Skamania County Community Development Program, 1958.

Reinke, Cecil Eugene. The relocation of North Bonneville, Washington, by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers : a policy implementation study. n.p., 1991.

Skamania County (Wash.). Public Utility District No. 1. You're invited to Skamania County. n.p., 1951.

That special someplace, Skamania County. [videorecording]. TriWest Audio-Visual, Ltd., 1995.

Townsend, Homer. Skamania : a Columbia River Gorge community in the 1920's. H. Townsend, 1986.

United States. Army. Corps of Engineers. Portland District. North Bonneville, Washington : Town relocation. Dept. of Defense, Dept. of the Army, Corps of Engineers, Portland District, 1975 or 1976.

COURT DOCUMENTS - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

Skamania County Clerk's office
Civil and Criminal court records, 1854-present

COURT DOCUMENTS - Published Sources

DEATHS - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

Skamania County Coroner's office
Death certificates, 1967-present

DEATHS - Published sources

Townsend, Homer. Obituaries from the Skamania County Pioneer newspaper, Skamania County, Washington, 1900-1929. H. Townsend, 1985.

EARLY DESCRIPTIVE OR PROMOTIONAL MATERIAL

EDUCATION - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

Skamania County Auditor's office
Record of eighth grade exams, 2 volumes, dates unknown

EDUCATION - Published sources

Shelley, William F. A history of the public schools of Skamania County, Washington from pioneer days to 1920. n.p., 1962.

ELECTION / VOTER RECORDS

GENEALOGICAL / HISTORICAL PERIODICALS

Skamania County heritage. Skamania County Historical Society, 1972- .

LAND / PROPERTY - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

Skamania County Auditor's office
Government Land Office records, 1855-present
Real property records, 1854-present

LAND / PROPERTY - Published sources

Ramsay, Daphne Hon. Marriage records, probate records and index to deeds and miscellaneous records of Skamania County, Washington. D. Ramsay, 197-?.

LICENSURE AND PROFESSIONAL RECORDS

MARRIAGE - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

Skamania County Auditor's office
Marriage records, 1874-present

MARRIAGE - Published sources

Ramsay, Daphne Hon. Index to Skamania County marriages, 1854 to January 1, 1931, including an abstract of marriage register from January 1, 1893 to May 10, 1917. n.p., 197-?.

_______. Marriage records, probate records and index to deeds and miscellaneous records of Skamania County, Washington. D. Ramsay, 197-?.

_______. Skamania County, Washington marriage records. Clark County Genealogical Society, 1987.

Skamania County records of births, marriages, early wills, probate administrations, deeds and miscellaneous records to 1892, and cemeteries of Skamania County. Skamania County,Wash., 1966.

MILITARY - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

Skamania County Auditor's office
Military discharges, 1945-present (prior to this, in the General Index)

MILITARY - Published sources

NATURALIZATION - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

Southwest Branch Archives
Certificates of Naturalization, 1896-1929
Declarations of Intention (with Applications), 1893-1973
Petitions for Naturalization, 1907-1974

NATURALIZATION - Published sources

NEWSPAPER INDEXES / SPECIAL EDITIONS

The Skamania County Pioneer special bicentennial-historical edition. Skamania County Pioneer, 1976.

OTHER - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

Skamania County Auditor's office
Index to mining locations and claims, 1900-present

OTHER - Published sources

PROBATE - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

PROBATE - Published sources

Ramsay, Daphne Hon. Marriage records, probate records and index to deeds and miscellaneous records of Skamania County, Washington. D. Ramsay, 197-?.

Skamania County records of births, marriages, early wills, probate administrations, deeds and miscellaneous records to 1892, and cemeteries of Skamania County. Skamania County, Wash., 1966.

TAXES - Personal, governmental, or organizational records

TAXES - Published sources

Central Branch Archives
Territorial Assessment Rolls, 1857-1862 (microfilm): Territorial counties in existence prior to 1862 - Chehalis, Clallam, Clark, Island, King-Kitsap, Jefferson, Lewis, Pierce, Sawamish, Skamania, Thurston, and Wahkiakum.

Skamania County Treasurer's office
Real and personal property tax rolls, 1980-present
Real estate excise tax records, 1951-present
Tax foreclosure records, 1930?-present