County Seat: Courthouse, 101 S River St., Enterprise 97828
Phone: 541-426-4543 ext. 15 (General); 541-426-4991 (Court Administrator)
Population (2011): 6,995
Established: Feb. 11, 1887
Elev. at Enterprise: 3,757'
Area: 3,153 sq. mi.
Average Temp.: January 24.2° July 63.0°
Assessed Value: $663,578,549
Real Market Value: $1,573,337,950
Annual Precipitation: 13.08"
Economy: Agriculture, art, livestock, forest products and recreation
Points of interest
Wallowa Lake, art galleries, Mt. Howard gondola, Eagle Cap Wilderness, Hells Canyon National Recreation Area, Minam, Wallowa and Grande Ronde Rivers
History and general information
This rather isolated area was claimed by the Chief Joseph band of the Nez Perce as its hunting and fishing grounds. The Nez Perce used the word “wallowa” to designate a tripod of poles used to support fish nets. In 1871, the first white settlers came to Wallowa County crossing the mountains in search of livestock feed in the Wallowa Valley. The area had been part of Union County since 1864, but it was carved from that county in 1887 by a legislative act.
Wallowa County is a land of rugged mountains, gentle valleys and deep canyons. Peaks in the Wallowa Mountains soar to almost 10,000 feet in elevation and the Snake River dips to about 1,000 feet above sea level. Hells Canyon, carved by the Snake, is the nation’s deepest gorge averaging 5,500 feet from rim to river.
The scenery in the county is spectacular and serves as a magnet for tourists. Unrivaled opportunities for outdoor recreation create the county’s reputation as a visitors’ paradise. Permanent residents enjoy the same recreation opportunities, adding to a high quality of life supported by traditional farm and forest industries, as well as art and tourism.
Commissioners—Paul Castilleja (R) 2015, Mike Hayward, Chair (R) 2017, Susan Roberts (R) 2017; Dist. Atty. Mona K. Williams 2015; Assess. Gay Fregulia 2017; Clerk Dana Roberts 2015; Sheriff Steve Rogers 2017;
Surv. Richard Shaver; Treas. Shonelle Dutcher-Pryse 2017