Knappton Cove Heritage Center
Knappton CoveHeritage Center

The Mission

The mission of the Knappton Cove Heritage Center is to promote, interpret and preserve the history of the historic U.S. Columbia River Quarantine Station - a National Historic Site - with an emphasis on the role of the U.S. Public Health Service.


Existing Facilities. The site exists on the north side of the Columbia River and is set against a steep hillside. State Route 401 bi-sects the site which is both land and water based. Visibility from the west is limited by vegetation and the bend of the road. Visibility from the east is much better, the entire building ensemble can be seen with the pile field while descending the hill. The National Register Nomination does not place historical hierarchy on any of the buildings. The caretaker’s house spans both pre-quarantine and quarantine periods. It has the best opportunity to interpret the sites European history. Its location near the river is an asset to interpreting exploration, canning and quarantine history. Exterior alterations, however, reduce its ability to evoke those periods. Next, are the hospital and kitchen. Both are nearly intact, had a large role in the day-to-day operations of the quarantine and clearly tell the story of the quarantine station. The pump house and boat shop are less significant, but their presence adds to the authenticity of the site. Trees in the orchard have lost much of their ability to tell the story of settler Joe Lamley. The Bearman Bungalow (west of Station grounds) and a relocated Coast Guard Boat Repair Shop (on hill behind Station grounds) are on differernt plats. A newly constructed house with appropriate roof lines and siding is now located on the site of the old barn that was demolished by the government. It is a year-round residence of the Tom Bell family.

Recreational Demand and Opportunites: Heritage Tourism; Kayaks, Canoes (on the Lewis & Clark National Water Trail) ; Bicyclists on the Lewis & Clark Discovery Trail List recreation trends and anticipated recreation participation here.

Issues (Goals)

1. The entire site should interpret both pre-quarantine history and the Quarantine Station.

2. Develop/interpret natural history and landscapes.

3. All restoration and renovation work should be done according to the building and site's Period of Significance, 1900 - 1936 Interpretation Strategy

A re-creation of the historic approach to the site, from the middle driveway, might be useful. Visitors enter the site with the same views and relationships to structures as was done during the historic period. This route is also easier for visitors to see from the highway. A portion of the dock could be reconstructed to allow the site to be approached by water. Both kayaks and small tour boats might use the facility. All historic buildings within the ensemble should be restored on their exterior if not interior. Non-historic buildings should be removed or obscured. Historic views from the site should be restored or retained. A brief walking tour of existing buildings is one way for visitors to begin to grasp the site’s history. The tour could include signs on standards with historic photographs and text describing the function/history of the buildings. The tour might also interpret pre-quarantine history, capturing historic views and landscape features.

Implementation Strategy Preservation of the Quarantine Hospital : All restoration and renovation work should be done according to the building and site's Period of Significance, 1900 - 1936.

Development of the museum:

1. Clarify story by creating a “house museum” in one half of the hospital, while interpreting medical history, site history, etc. with displays in the other half.

2. As the site is developed, interpretation can be enhanced and expanded to other structures.

3. Development of the site and museum will be concurrent with building renovation.

4. Site work should include disabled accessible features such as parking spaces, pathways, boardwalks or ramps and a restroom.

5. Trees in the orchard have lost much of their ability to tell the story of settler Joe Lamley. The orchard should be enhanced by planting additional trees.

6. Replant the kitchen garden to recall the quarantine period.

7. Moorage fees, a gift shop and rental of the property for receptions can help the site become sustainable.

Contact Us Today!

Nancy Anderson, Director

Phone: 1-503-738-5206



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