Harney County


County Information

In 1826, Peter Skene Ogden became the first white man to explore this area when he led a fur brigade for the Hudson’s Bay Company. In 1889, Harney, the largest county in Oregon, was carved out of Grant County and named for Major General William S. Harney, commander of the Department of Oregon, U.S. Army, from 1858–59. Harney was instrumental in opening areas of Eastern Oregon for settlement. A fierce political battle, with armed night riders who spirited county records from Harney to Burns, ended with Burns as the county seat in 1890. The courthouse was constructed five years later. Burns’ first newspaper was established in 1884 and its first church in 1887. Harney County shares the largest Ponderosa pine forest in the nation with Grant County and has more than 100,000 beef cattle on its vast ranges. Its abundance of game, campsites, excellent fishing and bird watching have stimulated fast-growing recreational activities. Oregon Blue Book:
Contact Info
Harney County
450 North Buena Vista #14
Burns OR 97720

Hours: 8:30-12:00/1:00-5:00 M-F
Phone: 541-573-6641
Fax #: 541-573-8370

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