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The Museum

Why Des Chutes?

The name Deschutes originated when French explorers referred to the riviere des chutes, meaning the river of the falls. They were referring to the falls where the Deschutes River empties into the Columbia River. The name was applied to early post offices and eventually simplified into the modern deschutes. 

Since 1980, the Des Chutes Historical Museum has been located in the historic Reid School, located at 129 NW Idaho, Bend, Oregon. 

The Museum abounds with history and relics of the past lives of Deschutes County.  Explore life along the obsidian routes with the native people who passed along the Deschtues river and fur trapping with early explorers; see the logging and railroad barons racing to settle the last open spaces amidst the Ponderosa Pines forests; meet the pioneers of Deschutes County who settled along the river and raised their children, grew their crops or started businesses and prospered. Explore this and more inside Reid School, itself a historic landmark for Deschutes County.

Continuing your adventure through the Museum, you may also find yourself inside the research library checking out historical photographs of the area, mulling through the gift store for reference materials and gifts.

Planning a visit? Click on the events page to see upcoming events and get involved with the history of Deschutes County. There is truly something for everyone. 

Around the Museum.... 

Re-enactor extraordinaire Lonny Johnson takes a moment to admire the photography of Loren Irving during the Museum's Westward Oregon celebrations, May 2010. 


Summer Shootout Marble Tournament 2013 Champs in the Children's Category. Diego (3rd), Luke (1st), and Ellis (2nd) with their prizes from The Art Station, Wabi Sabi, and Luke's Grand Prize bicycle from The Gear Peddler!

 Summer Shootout Marble Tournament 2013 Young at Heart Champs: Megan (3rd), Mike (2nd), and Helen with her new bike from The Gear Peddler. Megan won gift certificates from the Shops at the Old Mill and Sun Mountain Fun Center; Mike took home a family pass to SHARC water park in Sunriver.





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