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Willamette River

Willamette River



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The Willamette River flows entirely within the state of Oregon. These two forks are then joined by the third fork, the McKenzie.The Willamette was not explored by a single adventurer. About 13 years later, William Clark of the Lewis and Clark Expedition advanced a few miles up the river before turning back. In his journal he noted a river he called "the Multnomah," after the tribal nation that resided in the area.It was not until the surge of traders and trappers that the river was explored farther, and it was at that time that the Multnomah became known as the Willamette. The name's current spelling was the result of an 1841 visit by Lieutenant Charles Wilkes of the U.S. Exploring Expedition.In the early 1830s, retiring Hudson's Bay Company employees began to settle on the prairies along the Willamette River, where they had previously trapped. The river not only provided a means of transportation, but also a way to transport crops to market.As early as 1846, Robert "Doc" Newell, ex-trapper, operated three flatboats between the Willamette Falls and Champoeg, the center of trade on the middle river. By 1849, the gold discovery in California caused a mass explosion of fortune seekers. Those that stayed, hurried to increase agriculture production to supply the miners' needs. The landings and ferries operated at full capacity.Today the Willamette River is used extensively for recreation.


Watch the video: State monitoring toxic algae bloom in the Willamette River (August 2022).