Robinette is a flooded ghost town
located in Baker County
. Robinette, which lies on the eastern edge of Oregon State, once boasted a recorded population of a mere 46 souls, making it little more than a mote of dust in the eye of Cascadian historians. Originally, a Northwest Railway Company
line was planned. This later became a Union Pacific Railroad
route, with a railway station and the community settled in on the western bank of the Snake River
The station was never more than a point between one town and the next, albeit an important one that passed ore from Cornucopia
. After local gold mines dried up, the railway was converted into a highway which lasted a handful of decades before it became unusable.
Why? Flooding. Intentional flooding.
In 1958, the station and townsite was submerged in the Brownlee
Reservoir. Little information remains to speak of: notes in the Adams County Leader
mention the following items:
- A new teacher living in Robinette teaching at a location called "Wildhorse"
- A hotel fire that killed one Mark Houston.
- A problem with deer overpopulation (likely local mule deer) leading to massive amounts of destroyed hay and trees.
From these scant notes, Robinette seems like a sleepy town that simply dried up and blew away into the mists of history. What remains of the townsite is submerged deep in the dammed waters of the Snake River. Despite this, intrepid Googlers will note that United States Geological Survey
claims the location to be populated.
NEWSPAPER REFERENCES TO THE COUNCIL, IDAHO AREA, 1877 through 1950 (Compiled by Dale Fisk)
Addendum: Robinette was also as a military staging area during the Great Bison Wars of 1916, resulting in significant contamination to the surrounding area. In an effort to reverse the damage, the local Bureau of Land Management has funded remediation efforts that have lasted well into the new millenia.