La Grande, Oregon

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"La Grande" redirects here. For the Intel technology, see LaGrande Technology.
La Grande, Oregon
City
La Grande OR - aerial.jpg
Motto: The Hub of Northeast Oregon
Location in Oregon
Location in Oregon
Coordinates: 45°19′38″N 118°5′36″W / 45.32722°N 118.09333°W / 45.32722; -118.09333Coordinates: 45°19′38″N 118°5′36″W / 45.32722°N 118.09333°W / 45.32722; -118.09333
Country United States
State Oregon
County Union
Incorporated 1865
Government
 • Mayor Daniel S Pokorney
Area[1]
 • Total 4.61 sq mi (11.94 km2)
 • Land 4.58 sq mi (11.86 km2)
 • Water 0.03 sq mi (0.08 km2)
Elevation 2,785 ft (848.9 m)
Population (2010)[2]
 • Total 13,082
 • Estimate (2012[3]) 13,048
 • Density 2,856.3/sq mi (1,102.8/km2)
Time zone Pacific (UTC-8)
 • Summer (DST) Pacific (UTC-7)
ZIP code 97850
Area code(s) 458 and 541
FIPS code 41-40350[4]
GNIS feature ID 1164107[5]
Website www.ci.la-grande.or.us

La Grande /ləˈɡrænd/ is a city in Union County, Oregon, United States. Originally named "Brownsville," it was forced to change its name due to that name already being used for a city in Linn County. Its current name comes from an early French settler, Charles Dause, who often used the phrase "La Grande" to describe the area's beauty. The population was 13,082 at the 2010 census.[6] It is the county seat of Union County.[7] La Grande lies east of the Blue Mountains and southeast of Pendleton.

History[edit]

Early settlement[edit]

The Grande Ronde Valley had long been a waypoint along the Oregon Trail. The first permanent settler in the La Grande area was Benjamin Brown in 1861.[8] Not long after, the Leasey family and about twenty others settled there. The settlement was originally named after Ben Brown as Brown's Fort, Brown's Town, or Brownsville. There was already a Brownsville in Linn County, so when the post office was established in 1863, a more distinctive name was needed.[9][10] It was decided to use "La Grande", a phrase used by a Frenchman, Charles Dause, to describe the area's scenic splendor.[10] Before the post office was established, William Carter charged 50 cents a letter to carry the mail on horseback from the nearest post office, in Walla Walla, Washington.[10] La Grande was incorporated as a city in 1865,[9] and platted in 1868.[11]

Growth[edit]

La Grande grew rapidly during the late 1860s and early 1870s, partially because of the many gold mines in the region and the valley's agricultural capabilities. The early business establishments centered on C Avenue between present day Fourth Street and the hillside on the west end.[10]

In 1884, the railroad came to the flat slightly east of "Old Town".[10] This helped the town to grow, and also gave rise to "New Town", centered on Adams Avenue and built parallel to the railroad tracks.

By 1900, La Grande's population was 2992, representing half of the population of Baker City.[12]

La Grande's Eastern Oregon University, formerly known as Eastern Oregon State College, began in 1929 as Eastern Oregon Normal School, a teachers college.[13]

Sugar factory[edit]

La Grande had a factory for processing sugar beets into raw sugar. The sugar beets came from the nearby Mormon town of Nibley, Oregon, and both were owned by the Oregon Sugar Company. R. Doerstling, the superintendent of the factory in 1899, reported seeing a Native American teepee built out of used cloth filters from the factory.[14]

Geography[edit]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.61 square miles (11.94 km2), of which, 4.58 square miles (11.86 km2) is land and 0.03 square miles (0.08 km2) is water.[1] The town is a major hub in the Grande Ronde Valley. Mount Emily is a Grande Ronde Valley landmark towering over the city of La Grande to the north. It often features prominently on logos of local organizations,[citation needed] and is matched on the other side of the valley by a similar landmark, Mount Harris.

Climate[edit]

Climate data for La Grande, Oregon
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °F (°C) 34
(1)
39
(4)
45
(7)
52
(11)
61
(16)
70
(21)
79
(26)
79
(26)
70
(21)
59
(15)
43
(6)
36
(2)
55.6
(13)
Average low °F (°C) 19
(−7)
25
(−4)
25
(−4)
28
(−2)
36
(2)
43
(6)
46
(8)
46
(8)
39
(4)
32
(0)
27
(−3)
21
(−6)
32.3
(0.2)
Rainfall inches (mm) 2.8
(71)
2.01
(51)
2.09
(53)
1.89
(48)
2.01
(51)
1.69
(43)
0.59
(15)
0.91
(23)
1.06
(27)
1.69
(43)
2.52
(64)
2.95
(75)
22.21
(564)
Avg. rainy days 12 12 12 9 8 7 4 5 6 12 12 13 112
Source: http://worldclimateguide.co.uk/climateguides/oregon/lagrande-or.php

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1870 240
1880 400 66.7%
1890 2,583 545.8%
1900 2,991 15.8%
1910 4,843 61.9%
1920 6,913 42.7%
1930 8,050 16.4%
1940 7,747 −3.8%
1950 8,635 11.5%
1960 9,014 4.4%
1970 9,645 7.0%
1980 11,354 17.7%
1990 11,766 3.6%
2000 12,327 4.8%
2010 13,082 6.1%
Est. 2012 13,048 −0.3%
source:[6][15][16][17]

2010 census[edit]

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 13,082 people, 5,395 households, and 3,073 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,856.3 inhabitants per square mile (1,102.8 /km2). There were 5,794 housing units at an average density of 1,265.1 per square mile (488.5 /km2). The racial makeup of the city was 91.3% White, 0.8% African American, 1.4% Native American, 1.1% Asian, 1.5% Pacific Islander, 1.4% from other races, and 2.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.6% of the population.

There were 5,395 households of which 28.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.7% were married couples living together, 11.7% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.6% had a male householder with no wife present, and 43.0% were non-families. 32.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.93.

The median age in the city was 32.8 years. 22.4% of residents were under the age of 18; 16% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 23.6% were from 25 to 44; 23.3% were from 45 to 64; and 14.8% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.1% male and 51.9% female.

2000 census[edit]

As of the census[4] of 2000, there were 12,327 people, 5,124 households, and 2,982 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,833.5 people per square mile (1,094.1/km²). There were 5,483 housing units at an average density of 1,260.3 per square mile (486.7/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 92.92% White, 1.26% Asian, 0.90% Pacific Islander, 0.78% Native American, 0.68% African American, 1.40% from other races, and 2.07% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.77% of the population.

There were 5,124 households out of which 28.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.1% were married couples living together, 9.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.8% were non-families. 32.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.32 and the average family size was 2.93.

In the city the population was spread out with 23.6% under the age of 18, 16.5% from 18 to 24, 23.9% from 25 to 44, 21.4% from 45 to 64, and 14.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 90.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.0 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $31,576, and the median income for a family was $40,508. Males had a median income of $32,746 versus $21,930 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,550. About 8.3% of families and 15.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.0% of those under age 18 and 9.0% of those age 65 or over.

Museums and other points of interest[edit]

Commercial district[edit]

See also Wikimedia Commons Photographs from the La Grande Commercial Historic District
City Hall, located within the historic commercial district and formerly used as a Post Office and federal building.

La Grande includes a historic commercial district listed on the National Register of Historic Places in September 2001. The 42.7-acre (17.3 ha) district is bounded by the following:[18]


Education[edit]

The city is served by the La Grande School District, which includes Central Elementary School, Island City Elementary, Greenwood Elementary School, La Grande Middle School, and La Grande High School. La Grande is the home of Eastern Oregon University.

Media[edit]

The Observer is the local daily newspaper. Local radio stations include KLBM AM 1450 and the following stations on the FM dial: KEOL FM 91.7, KUBQ FM 98.7, KWRL FM 99.9, KTVR FM 90.3 KCMB FM 104.7, and KRJT FM 105.9.

Transportation[edit]

Highways[edit]

Eastbound exit 261 into La Grande off Interstate 84

Rail[edit]

La Grande is a crew change point on the Huntington and La Grande subdivisions of the Union Pacific Railroad, originally constructed through the area in 1884 by the Oregon Railway and Navigation Company.[19] Between 1977 and 1997, the city was a regular stop along the former route of Amtrak's Pioneer between Chicago, Salt Lake City, Portland and Seattle.[20] La Grande is also the junction of the Idaho Northern and Pacific Railroad's 20-mile short line to Elgin.[21]

Air[edit]

Notable people[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-21. 
  2. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-21. 
  3. ^ "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-06-02. 
  4. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  5. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  6. ^ a b "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010". 2010 Demographic Profile Data. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 8 October 2011. 
  7. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  8. ^ Reavis, J (2005). "First Settlement in Grande Ronde Valley, Union County, Oregon". Oregon Genealogy. Retrieved October 22, 2011. 
  9. ^ a b McArthur, Lewis A.; McArthur, Lewis L. (2003) [First published 1928]. Oregon Geographic Names (7th ed.). Portland, Oregon: Oregon Historical Society Press. ISBN 9780875952772. OCLC 53075956. 
  10. ^ a b c d e Reavis, J (2005). "La Grande History, Union County, Oregon". Oregon Genealogy. Retrieved December 29, 2008. 
  11. ^ Bailey, Barbara Ruth (1982). Main Street: Northeastern Oregon. Oregon Historical Society. ISBN 0-87595-073-6. 
  12. ^ Bailey, Barbara Ruth (1982). Main Street: Northeastern Oregon. Oregon Historical Society. p. 27. ISBN 0-87595-073-6. 
  13. ^ Allen, Cain (2005). "Eastern Oregon Normal School". Oregon Historical Society. Retrieved December 3, 2009. 
  14. ^ Arrington, Leonard J. (1966). Beet sugar in the West; a history of the Utah-Idaho Sugar Company, 1891-1966. University of Washington Press. p. 29. OCLC 234150. ; see also Ogden Standard, 1899-07-08)
  15. ^ Moffatt, Riley. Population History of Western U.S. Cities & Towns, 1850-1990. Lanham: Scarecrow, 1996, 211.
  16. ^ "Subcounty population estimates: Oregon 2000-2007" (CSV). United States Census Bureau, Population Division. 2009-03-18. Retrieved 2009-04-29. 
  17. ^ "Incorporated Places and Minor Civil Divisions Datasets: Subcounty Population Estimates: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 25 November 2013. 
  18. ^ "Standards and Guidelines Manual for Historic Rehabilitation and Preservation for La Grande, Oregon" (PDF). City of La Grande. Retrieved 2011-08-22. 
  19. ^ Halvorson, Gary (2005). "A 1940 Journey Across Oregon: Baker to La Grande". Oregon Secretary of State. Retrieved May 15, 2009. 
  20. ^ "P.R.I.I.A Section 224 Pioneer Route Passenger Rail Study". Amtrak. Retrieved December 3, 2009. 
  21. ^ "Idaho Northern & Pacific Railroad INPR #331". Union Pacific. Retrieved December 3, 2009. 

External links[edit]