Throwback Thursday: Vista House of Multnomah County

Feb 28 2020, 12:05 am

Vista House is the most aptly named building in the state. This museum, perched atop the ridge in Multnomah County, Oregon, is as much a must-see vantage point of the gorge as it is a powerful celebration of Oregon pioneers.

Flipping through the archives on Getty Images, we came across a show of the museum just a few decades after it finally opened. Designed by renowned architect Edgar Lazarus, the high-grade marble structure only recently (2000) received a restoration.

Check out this stunning black and white photograph of the Vista House on the edge of the Columbia River Gorge from back in 1935.

There’s so much detail from this perspective, dubbed “the Sci Fi Building,” Vista house has been a staple in Oregon landscape photography for almost 100 years now.

As acclaimed highway engineer Samuel Lancaster said, the ridge is the perfect site for “an observatory from which the view both up and down the Columbia could be viewed in silent communion with the infinite.”

Vista House

In the modern Millennium, the Vista House is simply a breathtaking look at the history of Oregon architecture and perseverance. Visitors can enter and take a look around the beloved sight, and soak up all of the history within its walls. Hours of operation vary, so be sure to check with their schedule before making the trek out there.

Check out what the site looks like now.


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Visitors to the site are oftentimes taken aback by the glorious view (at all sides) of the massive Columbia River Gorge. For more information on the historic Vista House on Crown Point, check out their archive website.

Vista House at Crown Point

Address: 40700 Historic Columbia River Highway, Corbett, OR
Phone: 503-344-1368


Wyatt FossettWyatt Fossett

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