The Astoria Column is a tower in the northwest United States, overlooking the mouth of the Columbia River on Coxcomb Hill in Astoria, Oregon. Built 92 years ago in 1926, the concrete and steel structure is part of a 30-acre city park.
It might surprise you to find this imposing monument on a windswept hill in the north-western tip of Oregon in a town of a population of 10,000 in a part of the country that, at first glance, could appear to be the end of the road.
In fact, this is no lonely outpost, but the cradle for America’s claim to the Pacific Coast.
The Astoria Column is an artful summary of the triumphs, conflicts and turning points of the frontier. And the 400,000 annual visitors who are drawn to explore the jewel on the hill will invariably discover fascination pieces of American Indian, U.S. and Oregon history.
The murals on the Column celebrate the earliest moments of Northwest history. Most of the imagery deals with events between 1792 and 1818 – pivotal years in American’s history from Captain Robert Gray 1792, Lewis and Clark expedition 1805, Coming of the Pioneers 1834 and the arrival of the railroad 1880’s
Some Column Facts:
Depth of foundation: 12 feet
Height: 125 feet
Number of steps: 164
Number of cartoons: 12
Number of brown figures: 200
Decoration at top: State Seal of Oregon
Original cost: $27,133.96
Weather repair: 1936
Column restoration: 1995
Plaza restoration: 2004
Staircase replacement: 2008
Column restoration: 2015
Plaza upgrades: 2016
There is no cost to visit the park site or to enter the Column. Parking is $5 per vehicle and constitutes a one-year pass. They ask buses and school groups to please contact them prior to your visit.
The Column is open from dawn to dusk.
The park closes at 10pm
Gift Shop Hours
April – September 9:00 am to 7:00 pm
October – March 10:00 am to 5:00 pm
Closed Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.
For more information please visit: https://astoriacolumn.org/
Think travel and enjoy the journey.
Lynne Tucker is a travel writer and photojournalist based in Palm Desert CA