Auburn is deserted today, but the former gold miningboomtown was once the largest community in Eastern Oregon. Auburn only had one or two buildings until 1861, when gold was discovered in the area. By September 1862, Auburn had grown into a full-fledged town with over 20 stores and 1000 homes to serve the mining industry. In that month the Oregon Legislative Assembly made Auburn the first county seat of Baker County, but by the 1870s Auburn was largely deserted, with a population of 200 people in 1873. The post office, the first in northeast Oregon, closed in 1903.