Population (2013): 1,780
Established: Feb. 25, 1889
Elev. at Moro: 1,807'
Area: 831 sq. mi.
Average Temp.: January 30.7° July 67.9°
Assessed Value: $433,693,873
Real Market Value: $1,712,290,286
Annual Precipitation: 9.15"
Economy: Tourism, wind energy, wheat, barley and cattle
Points of interest
Historic county courthouse, Sherman County Museum, Gordon Ridge, John Day Dam, Sherar’s Grade, Deschutes State Park, LePage Park, Giles French Park, Sherman County Fairgrounds and Recreational Vehicle Park
History and general information
Sherman County, created in 1889 from the northeast corner of Wasco County, was named for General William Tecumseh Sherman. It was separated from Wasco County as much for its unique geological setting as for the settlers’ desire to have their own political process. The rolling hills are bordered by the deep canyons of the John Day River to the east, the Columbia River to the north, and the Deschutes River and Buck Hollow to the west and south.
The county was settled in the 1870s by stockmen. By 1881, the homesteaders arrived, permanently changing the area by plowing and fencing the land. Since then, the county has been a wheat-growing area with miles of waving grain on rolling hills of wind-blown glacial silt. The total absence of timber in the county exemplifies the true meaning of the “wide open spaces of the West.” Its pastoral landscape has spectacular views of canyons and rivers with mountains silhouetted in the distance. Recreation abounds on the rivers, from the famous and scenic fly-fishing and whitewater rafting stream of the Deschutes to water-skiing, wind-surfing, boating, fishing and rafting on the John Day and Columbia Rivers. Sherman County is one of
Oregon’s leaders in soil and water conservation.
Commissioners—Tom McCoy (R) 2019, Mike Smith (R) 2017, Judge Gary Thompson 2019; Dist. Atty. Wade McLeod 2019; Assess. Ross Turney 2019; Clerk Jenine McDermid 2017; Treas. Marnene Benson-Wood 2019; Justice of the Peace Ron McDermid 2021; Sheriff Brad Lohrey 2017; Surv. Daryl Ingebo