Fort Hoskins Historic Park Open House on October 13

Fort Hoskins Commander's House

The Benton County Natural Areas and Parks Department, with support from the Benton County Fort Hoskins Advisory Board and the Alliance for Recreation and Natural Areas (AFRANA), are hosting an open house of Fort Hoskins Historic Park on Saturday, October 13, 2018, from 10:00am - 2:00pm. 

Presentations will be provided at the Commander's House, and the Franz-Dunn House will be open for touring. Re-enactors of the Civil War will be in attendance with period clothing and armaments, including a canon, which will be ignited a few times during the event. A nature walk of the grounds will be led by a County botanist. 
 
The event is free and open to all. A shuttle vehicle will be available to take visitors from Fort Hoskins' main parking area down to the houses. 

The Fort Hoskins open house schedule follows: 

  • 10:00 am: Informal talks with visitors by County staff and AFRANA members at the main shelter
  • 11:00 am and again at 12:00 pm: A hike and discussion of the natural area
  • 10:00 am - 2:00 pm: Re-enactors on the Parade Ground
    • The canon will be fired on the hour and 1/2 hour               
  • 10:00 am - 2:00 pm: Franz-Dunn Open House
  • 10:00 am - 2:00 pm: Commander's Open House
    • Presentations throughout the day

Fort Hoskins was established in 1856 to keep Native Americans on the new coastal reservation and white settlers from incursions in their direction. Two officers' quarters and the Commander's House were built under the supervision of Phil Sheridan serving under Post Commander Christopher Augur. 

The Fort was decommissioned at the end of the war and returned to area settlers. Most buildings, already deteriorating, were dismantled or moved. The Commander's House was moved about eight miles to the community of Pedee. 

The area flourished until the 1960's with logging and farming, even having a train system. Benton County purchased the property for a park in 1991 and opened it to the public in 2002. In 2012, with the assistance of AFRANA, the County was able to acquire the Commander's House at Pedee through several grants and donations. The Commander's House was moved on two trucks to the site in October 2012, and has been undergoing exterior preservation and rehabilitation work by Benton County. 

Future projects include work on the interior, with the goal to create fashions and furnishings available during that time period to an officer of the Federal army. On-going research, beginning in the 1970's by Dr. David Brauner of Oregon State University, and recent investigations by Dr. Kathleen Bryant, have revealed much about the lives of the many who lived there before and during the settlement and Civil War years. 

For more information please contact Laurie Starha, Benton County Natural Areas and Parks at 541-766-6871.

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Entrance sign to Fort Hoskins Historical Park
View of the grounds at Fort Hoskins Historical Park