|— City —|
|Nickname(s): Oregon's Best Known Ghost Town|
|• Mayor||Goldie Roberts|
|• Total||0.50 sq mi (1.29 km2)|
|• Land||0.50 sq mi (1.29 km2)|
|• Water||0 sq mi (0 km2)|
|Elevation||3,344 ft (1,019 m)|
|• Estimate (2011)||36|
|• Density||72.0/sq mi (27.8/km2)|
|Time zone||Pacific (UTC-8)|
|• Summer (DST)||Pacific (UTC-7)|
|GNIS feature ID||1126791|
The first European Americans came to the Shaniko area after the discovery of gold in Canyon City, Oregon, in 1862. The route to Canyon City started at the early settlement of The Dalles, 190 miles (310 km) away. Camps were made wherever water could be found. One camp, which became the farming community of Bakeoven, was closely associated with the future town of Shaniko, while another camp, Cross Hollow, was located in the present Shaniko city limits. In 1867, following complaints of hostile Indians and fear of robbery of those transporting gold, the State of Oregon received a grant from the United States government to build a military wagon road from The Dalles to Fort Boise, Idaho. Following this road, homesteaders began claiming land in Central Oregon that was previously fairly inaccessible.
One of these settlers was August Scherneckau, who came to the area after the Civil War, in 1874. The spelling of the town's name reflects local pronunciation of Scherneckau's name. The town was originally called Cross Hollows, and a post office by that name was established in May 1879 with Scherneckau as postmaster. Cross Hollows post office closed in 1887, and Shaniko post office opened in 1900.
The town's heyday was the first decade of the 20th century, when Shaniko served as a transportation hub spurred by the presence of the Columbia Southern Railway, a subsidiary of Union Pacific Railroad, which built a branch from Biggs Junction to a terminus in Shaniko. That branch was completed in May 1900. At the time, the city was known as the "Wool Capital of the World", and it was the center of 20,000 square miles (52,000 km2) of wool, wheat, cattle and sheep production, with no other such center east of the Cascade Range in Oregon. The region served by the city even stretched into Idaho, south to Klamath Falls, Oregon and beyond, because of rail connections to the main line.
The residents of Shaniko voted to incorporate Shaniko and elected a mayor, F. T. Hurlbert, and other city officials on January 1, 1902. It was Wasco County's fifth largest city, boasting the largest wool warehouse in the state, from which two tons were marketed in 1901. It was surrounded by cattle ranches, which produced livestock for shipment that filled 400 railroad cars that year.
By 1911, another line diverted traffic once served by the Columbia Southern and the town begin to decline. A mid-1960s flood in Hay Canyon near Grass Valley destroyed part of the Columbia Southern line and led to its abandonment.
Shaniko is located at an elevation of 3,344 feet (1019 m).
The semi-arid climate creates a landscape with little visible vegetation other than sagebrush, scrub oak and dry grass most of the year. Many foothills and peaks of the Cascade range are visible from the city, including Three Fingered Jack, Hood, Jefferson, Adams, St. Helens and Rainier.
2010 census 
As of the census of 2010, there were 36 people, 17 households, and 11 families residing in the city. The population density was 72.0 inhabitants per square mile (27.8 /km2). There were 24 housing units at an average density of 48.0 per square mile (18.5 /km2). The racial makeup of the city was 75.0% White, 8.3% Asian, and 16.7% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8.3% of the population.
There were 17 households out of which 17.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.9% were married couples living together, 5.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.9% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.3% were non-families. 29.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.12 and the average family size was 2.55.
The median age in the city was 54.5 years. 16.7% of residents were under the age of 18; 2.8% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 19.5% were from 25 to 44; 27.8% were from 45 to 64; and 33.3% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 58.3% male and 41.7% female.
2000 census 
As of the census of 2000, there are 26 people, 14 households, and nine families residing in the city. The population density is 55.9 people per square mile (21.8/km²). There are 35 housing units at an average density of 75.3 per square mile (29.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city is 92.31% White and 7.69% African American.
There are 14 households out of which 7.1% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.0% are married couples living together, 0% have a female householder with no husband present, and 35.7% are non-families. 21.4% of all households are made up of individuals and 14.3% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 1.86 and the average family size is 2.11.
In the city the population is spread out with 7.7% under the age of 18, 0% from 18 to 24, 11.5% from 25 to 44, 42.3% from 45 to 64, and 38.5% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 61 years. For every 100 females there are 136.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 140.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city is $28,750, and the median income for a family is $31,250. Males have a median income of $28,750 versus $43,333 for females. The per capita income for the city is $15,617. 16.7% of the population and 0.0% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 0.0% of those under the age of 18 and 100.0% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.
Points of interest 
Historic buildings 
The Shaniko Historic District includes the Shaniko Schoolhouse, the Shaniko Jailhouse, and the Shaniko Historic Center. Many of the buildings in the historic district have undergone restoration.
- "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-21.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-21.
- "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-01-04.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- Rees, Helen Guyton (1982). Shaniko: From Wool Capital to Ghost Town. Portland, Oregon: Binford & Mort. ISBN 0-8323-0398-4.
- McArthur, Lewis A.; Lewis L. McArthur (2003) . Oregon Geographic Names (Seventh Edition ed.). Portland, Oregon: Oregon Historical Society Press. ISBN 0-87595-277-1.
- An Illustrated History of Central Oregon. Spokane, Washington: Western Publishing Co. 1905.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- Wasco County History
- Oregon Parks and Recreation Department