Enterprise, Wallowa County, Oregon

     Named in 1887 at a town meeting.  The name was suggested by R. V. Stubblefield after such names as Bennett Flat, Wallowa City, Franklin and Fairfield had been considered.

Enterprise First Named Franklin

     The city of Enterprise was laid out by R. F. Stubblefield and John Zurcher in 1886.  The town was first called "Franklin" but this name was soon changed to "Wallowa City" and this name was used until September 3, 1887 when a public meeting was held for the purpose of rechristening the city and a majority agreed on the name of "Enterprise".

     Enterprise was incorporated in 1888.  The first elected municipal officers were: Mayor, J. M. Church; recorder, James L. Reavis; councilmen, J. P. Gardner, R. F. Stubblefield and W. H. Miller; marshal, R. L. Irwin.

     The first school house, a two story frame structure, was constructed in 1887 and cost $1,000.  This school building is reported to be the present Church photographic studio building at the northwest corner of Main and West First streets.  It was the largest building in Wallowa county.

First School

     The first school taught in Enterprise was a private institution taught by Susie Zurcher during the winter and spring of 1887.

     In 1901 records show the cost of running the city's school was $3,421.03.  Three teachers handled 190 students.  The teachers were M. K. Manning, principal, Miss Belle Forsythe and Miss Lena Devore (the late Mrs. W. W. Zurcher).

     Three attempts were made to establish a private secondary school in the county before the people voted to set up a county high school in the building which is presently the Guest Apartments.  The first such school was an academy established in Enterprise in 1892 by L. O. Hoffman.  He ran the academy only one year.

     Three years later the Wallowa Academy was founded by the Dotson Brothers who ran it two years and then gave up.  In 1899 one J. S. Hodgin made the third attempt, but his venture lasted only a year.

Hotel-Motel Enterprise

Hotel-Motel Enterprise The Hotel-Motel Enterprise is conveniently located on Main Street across from the courthouse.  The hotel has been in continuous operation since it was built in 1902.  The walls are two feet thick and are made of native stone quarried six miles from Enterprise.
     The facilities have been kept up to date with new furniture, excellent beds, clean and comfortable rooms and most recently several motel unites have been added.
     A fine coffee shop and lobby offer an excellent view of the city and the Wallowa Mountains. 
Hotel - Motel Enterprise, Mr. and Mrs. Cecil Best, Phone 71  Contributed by Jim Reavis

Enterprise School Playground

An innovation for a small town was started last fall in Enterprise when a playground was equipped for children of the grade school.  Devices of all kinds were installed for giving the children an opportunity for varied and healthy exercise.  The playground at once became immensely popular, and has lost nothing of its hold on the small pupils to this day.  It is crowded by children who delight in frolicking over the apparatus.  When J. A. Churchill, state superintendent of education, was here in the winter, he said this was the best school playground in the state outside of Portland, and it is hardly excelled there.  The picture of the ground last winter, presented herewith, was used in the state bulletin on school recreation, and is printed in this paper by courtesy of Supt Churchill.  Contributed by Jim Reavis

Least We Forget
Photo Credits Jim Reavis

   With the great war in its most critical stage on the blood soaked battlefields of France, America will float its Third Liberty Loan, beginning Saturday, April 6.  Wallowa County seeks to show its loyalty by going over the top, by the close of the third day of the drive. The people of the county wish to do this to show  their devotion to their country, to humanity, and to the three or four hundred young men who have gone from here under Old Glory to fight for the great cause.

     This photograph, which appeared in the Record Chieftain, May 3, 1917 shows the first group of Enterprise boys to volunteer.  They been training in camps in America ever since and now part are on their way to France.  Others will go shortly and undoubtedly will be on the firing lines or close to it, before summer comes.  The boys are Edward Lindsay, Elbert Bellows, Palmer McVicker, Ralph Kay, Alvin Clayton, Clyde Batty, Neva Streeter, Walter Doss, Albert Parker, Joe Sanford, Emerson Reavis, Jesse Warnock, Blane Stubblefield, Burton Gifford, C. C. Clearwater and Lonis Meecham.

     No one who stays home can make any such sacrifice as these young man have offered.  The terrible clash of the recent days shows the awful maelstrom of death before them.  But they are giving bravely, eagerly, without a thought of holding back.  They have laid their all, their lives on the alter of country.  Can anybody at home look into their faces in this picture and hesitate to do his part?

    For the sake of these boys and the birthright of every American, let the bonds be subscribed before the night of April 8.  Be a man: do your duty.

Buy Liberty Bonds

     Wallowa County has not fallen down on any war appeal yet made.  It went far beyond its quota for the Red Cross, came up to the mark for they Y.M.C.A., and was the first county in the state to pledge its full share of the Second Liberty Loan.

     The Third Liberty Loan will be put out Saturday, April 6, and the plan is to close every business house and for three days, there will be no business done in the county except the buying of Liberty Bonds.  Get ready to take your share promptly.

     Your county expects o less of you.  These young boys expect no less of you.  Here are 34 young men of Wallowa county, home boys whom you know, who left for army and navy May1 and 2 of last year.  They have gone to the front to fight your battles.  Back them up to the limit.

Contributed by Jim Reavis


Additional Enterprise Photos

Wallowa County

Wallowa County Towns


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Oregon Obituary Database

We changed our name, and have expanded!

Contains obituaries for Baker, Crook, Grant, Hood River, Lane, Linn, Malheur, Umatilla, Union, and Wallowa Counties.

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