Lewis County is home to several sites that provide a peek into what once was. Enjoy a visit to one or several of these attractions and receive a lesson into part of the history of our region.
Built in 1858, the Claquato Church is thought to be the oldest Protestant church in the Pacific Northwest and it’s included on the National Register of Historic Places. The church also hosts some events throughout the year, including the Lewis County Historical Museum’s Pioneer Pie Social in the summer.
125 Water St., Chehalis
Fort Borst Park
This 101-acre park includes the 1860s Borst Home, a one-room schoolhouse replica as well as the Fort Borst blockhouse. Admission is $2 for adults, $1 for children aged 5 to 12 years and $10 for families (Borst Home admission). Head west on Harrison Avenue in Centralia. Turn left on Johnson Road, go past the middle school and swimming pool. Follow the signs to the Borst Home.
Lewis and Clark State Park, a popular camping destination, comprises 621 acres, including one of the last old-growth forests in the state. Campsites, trails, kitchens for rent and more all call Lewis and Clark State Park home.
McMenamins Olympic Club remains one of Centralia’s most popular destinations — that’s not surprising since it comprises a restaurant and bar, a hotel and even a movie theater. If you go, be sure to pick up some locally brewed beer to go.
112 N. Tower Ave., Centralia
The 1845 Jackson House was the first pioneer home built north of the Columbia River. It’s located near Lewis and Clark State Park. Take U.S. Highway 12 to Mary’s Corner and turn south on Jackson Highway, where you’ll see it just off the side of the road.
Housed in a 1912 Northern Pacific Railroad depot in downtown Chehalis, the Lewis County Historical Museum is dedicated to the preservation of the history and heritage of Lewis County. The museum is also home to a local model railroad club.
599 N.W. Front Way, Chehalis
The Veterans Memorial Museum showcases the personal histories of veterans from Lewis County. Several events throughout the year pay tribute to people from across our region who have served overseas and in support roles in armed conflict.
100 S.W. Veterans Way, Chehalis
Tenino Depot Museum
The museum, built in 1914 as a railroad depot, houses the history of Tenino, a town of 1,600. Visit the museum to see American Indian artifacts from the Nisqually and Chehalis tribes, logging and quarry tools or the printing press used to make wooden money during the great Depression.
399 Park Ave W., Tenino
Take a tour aboard a train that traces the path of an old logging railroad that once weaved through the forests and served lumber mills in East Lewis County. The railroad provides a glimpse into an integral part of the history of the region, which historically depended on timber for much of its livelihood.
54124 Mountain Highway East, Elbe
This private collection includes original and fully restored pre-1916 Indians, Harley-Davidson Excelsiors and other vehicles and bicycles. It’s a stunning testament to America’s love of horsepower. The museum is open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on weekdays or by appointment. Admission is $5.
545 N. Market Blvd., Chehalis
White Pass Country Museum
Learn about the rich history of East Lewis County and the eastern slope of the Cascades at the White Pass Country Historical Museum in Packwood. Cost is $2 for adults and $1 for children, and it is open by appointment.