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Fairview City

Fairview City Hall is located at 1300 Village Street NE, Fairview, OR 97024; phone: 503-665-7929.

Beginnings [1]

The first known inhabitants of what is now the City of Fairview were members of the Multnomah band of the Chinook tribe, and they lived in a prosperous village along the Columbia River near where Blue Lake Park is now located. By 1806 when elements of the Lewis & Clark Expedition visited Ne-cha-co-lee, (or Nechocokee as commemorated in one of the city's parks) the village, apparently decimated by a smallpox epidemic, had declined from six long houses to one. Only a small remnant of the hundreds who once lived there remained.

In the 1840's and 1850's the area began to attract settlers as people sought out farming opportunities in the East Multnomah County area. Utilizing the wet character of the area, the growing of hay for feed and grains prospered, along with a variety of livestock operations. Eventually the area would become known for its orchards, dairies and berries. Because of the need to ship out the various agricultural products, Fairview was established as a stop for the trains when tracks were built through the area in the 1890's. By that time the population had begun to grow and local residents had taken to calling the area Fairview because of the attractive views to the Columbia River, Mt. Hood and the Columbia Gorge available then, and now, throughout the city. The Fairview Historical Society has a number of pictures dating from the 1890's showing the aesthetically pleasing character of the landscape at that time. Homes constructed in the 1860's still exist in Fairview's Old Town Neighborhood.

The name Fairview seems to have been selected first by members of the Fairview Methodist Church (1853) to identify their location. When the community applied for a post office to the U.S. Postal Service they were denied the use of the name Fairview because another community with the same name already existed on the Oregon coast. As a result the area was known as Cleone for a short time until the post office on the coast closed and the name returned to the local area.

Incorporated in 1908 by a vote of 36 to 6 the first Mayor of the new City of Fairview was G.E. Shaver. The city was composed of a few homes, some commercial buildings along Curve Street near the train depot and a school building. As more people began to slowly move into the area more homes were added and the area began to take on the appearance of a small town. A City Hall was constructed in the vicinity of the current Handy Park. Interestingly, that City Hall had a second floor for community social activities, including a dance floor.

  1. City of Fairview Oregon, Fairview Comprehensive Plan, June, 2004,, accessed May, 2012.
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