Milwaukie Oregon | Clackamas County | Greater Portland Metropolitan Area

Historic Pink Dogwood trees in MilwaukieMilwaukie, Oregon was named after Lot Whitcomb, one of the first pioneers to settle in the area. He left Illinois in March 1847, arriving at the site in 1848 where he built a sawmill as a source of lumber for the California gold rush during the time. But he also built a gristmill, to provide flour to the California gold fields, which led to the growth and development of the community. By 1850, there were two hotels, a shoe store, and several general stores, saloons, a school, and even church services in private residences. The railroads reached Milwaukie in November, 1869. Although the initial petition for incorporating the city happened in 1901, it was only in 1903 that is finally took place.

Dogwood City of the West

Milwaukie had an unusual and large dogwood tree, said by many to be the oldest in the U.S. Its beauty attracted visitors from all over including Eleanor Roosevelt and National Geographic Magazine. In fact, a 1960’s postcard of the tree which was sold during that time, can still be found at the Milwaukie Historical Society. In 1952, the city had its name adopted to ‘Dogwood City of the West‘ in honor of that same unique tree which measured about 65 feet high and had a spread of 50 feet in the home of Milwaukie resident Henry A. Niedermeyer. One day a storm hit Portland and broke one of the dogwood’s large limbs, so it began to deteriorate. Nothing could be done to save the tree, so the city decided to name another dogwood in the area as the official city tree, carrying on the legacy of the original one. During the city’s Centennial, a goal of planting 100 trees was achieved.

City Vision, Climate, Demographics and Economy

Milwaukie is diverse both culturally and economically. Only a short 15 minute drive to downtown Portland and 10 minutes to Lake Oswego, the city is a transportation and economic hub in the region. Employment opportunities and new technology provide an efficient mixture of both the human and the available natural resources, all connected by an existing green space network. The city is walkable and residents and visitors enjoy busy commercial districts, high quality schools, and a modern innovative urban design. Milwaukie, Oregon, has an 82 degree high average temperature in July and during winter a low of 35 in the month of January. The median income is $51,805, with a population of 82% White, 3% Black, 3% Asian, 1% Native American or Native Hawaiian and 5% of Hispanic or Latino residents. The downtown area of the city has new construction taking place for new apartments and retail space. Tourist attractions include a farmers’ market, restaurants, coffee shops, and stores. An interesting fact is that Milwaukie is home of the Dark Horse Comics, which published Sin City and dozens of other film and television series such as Mask and Time Cop.