The Deschutes Republic is an independent city-state located in the Pacific Northwest.
Gaining its independence in 1846, the region is a major player in international trade. Based in agriculture, the economy has since grown to include financial services, manufacturing, and green technology. A major emphasis of sustainability, education, and quality urban living has made Deschutes a model for 21st Century urban areas.
The original House of Government in Deschutes City, now obscured by an office tower.
The vegetation in the Deschutes area was originally temperate rain forest, consisting of conifers with scattered pockets of maple and alder, and large areas of swampland (even in upland areas, due to poor drainage). The conifers were a typical coastal British Columbia/Washington mix of Douglas fir, Western red cedar and Western Hemlock.
One of the many cascades that populate the landscape, giving the region its name.
The summer months are typically dry, often resulting in moderate drought conditions, usually in July and August. In contrast, most days during late fall and winter (November–March) are rainy.
The Deschutes area, early in its history
Annual precipitation as measured in Deschutes averages 1,199 millimeters (47.2 in), though this varies dramatically throughout the metropolitan area due to the topography and is considerably higher in the downtown area. In winter, a majority of days receive measurable precipitation. Summer months are drier and sunnier with moderate temperatures, tempered by sea breezes. The daily maximum averages 22 °C (72 °F) in July and August, with highs rarely reaching 30 °C (86 °F). Average yearly snowfall is 48.2 centimeters (19.0 in) but typically does not remain on the ground for long.
Archaeological records indicate the presence of Aboriginal people in the Vancouver area from 8,000 to 10,000 years ago. The area is located in the traditional territories of the Squamish, Musquea, and Burrard peoples of the Coast Salish group. The first European to explore the coastline of present-day Point Grey and parts of Burrard Inlet was José María Narváez of Spain, in 1791, although one author contends that Francis Drake may have visited the area in 1579.
The first western settlements in the Deschutes area were made in present-day River's Bend, which is located eastward up the SomenaRiver.First settled by English fur trappers in 1808, Americans were locating there by mid-century.
Growth and Independence
When the Oregon Treaty was signed in 1848, the border between Canada and the United States was settled at the 49th parallel. The small community of Deschutes, primarily populated by Americans, lay just north of this line near Fort Langley.
Territorial claims in the American Northwest
Sensing an opportunity, business owner and land prospector John Deighton negotiated for Deschutes to remain independent. America, seeking to avoid a second war (as the Mexican-American War was ongoing) did not argue, while the British simply did not care. The Fraser Canyon Gold Rush of 1858 jump started the local economy. John Deighton, who had laid claim to the eastern valley began to lease his land to farmers whose food production was vital for the Gold Rushers. The village of River's Bend on the Somena River became the local hub for shipping and commerce.
Over the rest of the 19th century, the region grew as the agricultural output was so great that surplus could be shipped abroad. A rail linked River's bend with the Deschutes Harbor, where what would become the region's largest city and namesake would grow.
Land prospector John Deighton