Detroit, Oregon, USA – Strong in the Heart of the Oregon Cascades


WATER SYSTEM UPDATE 1/14/21 Water should NOT be used for ANY purpose, and do not turn water service to residence at the meter.  Flushing the distribution system remains on hold due to equipment failures. The Breitenbush Intake flushing system was installed and the failed pump replaced. The USDA has agreed to the procurement of the temporary water treatment plant equipment, and has determined eligibility for a grant.   CLICK HERE to read this week’s full report and update.

VIDEO LINKS – CLICK HERE to visit the DETROIT STRONGER YouTube Channel, with recorded interviews, council meetings, and tree lighting ceremony.

MARKING TREES – The EPA has been marking the trees with a white X in the City of Detroit.  Arborists determine which trees are deemed unstable.  They have no intention in cutting them down.  ODOT will be doing Phase II of the cleanup.  He also said that the utility companies have been marking trees in orange paint.

WATER INFRASTRUCTURE INFORMATION – Clear information in regards to the repairs and restoration of the water infrastructure system. CLICK HERE

LETTER FROM FOREST SERVICE – USFS has designed a plan for homeowners to deal with burned trees on USFS property. Please CLICK HERE to read letter from the Supervisor’s Office to find what you need to gain permission to cut fire damaged trees on Forest Service Land adjacent to private property. Forest Ranger, Penny Keen can be reached for more information at 541.460.8930, or

POTABLE WATER – Marion Co. will be supplying potable water to Detroit for home use. They will be distributing water at the city park noon to 4pm.  People should not expect to get water at all times as County personnel will be dispersing the water.

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT DEBRIS REMOVAL:  Protect your health, the environment, and the community’s ability to rebuild. CLICK HERE for more information.

MARION COUNTY WILDFIRE INFORMATION Disposal and Erosion. Hazardous Waste Removal Information. CLICK HERE.

INFORMATION FROM THE STATE:  Debris Clean-up with Q&As can be found online here:
Debris Removal and what is next for those who have lost homes or businesses. CLICK HERE

EPA OREGON FIRES RECOVERY: USEPA has been tasked with surveying, removing, and disposing of household hazardous wastes (HHW) remaining at burned or damaged properties and structures. CLICK HERE

The MARION COUNTY EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT is organizing a Multi-Agency Resource Center (MARC)This is where residents can meet with FEMA (and other agencies) who can help them find programs that they may qualify for, to clear their property and rebuild. They also will try and answer your questions. CLICK HERE

ADDRESSING FIRE DEBRIS The State of Oregon, along with federal, state, and local partners, are working to address the task of fire debris removal.  To read full Report (Page 1) CLICK HEREWHY THIS PROCESS IS IMPORTANT.  (Page 2)  Please CLICK HERE to learn about the recovery process: 1) Save money, 2) FEMA Reimbursement/Eligibility, 3) Health threats, and 4) Disposal difficulty.

FEMA DISASTER ASSISTANCE AND UPDATE INFORMATION.  Please visit, or call 1-800-621-3362 (FEMA). Click this link for the FEMA FACT SHEET: Eligibility and Appeals.

The FEMA website gives a great deal of information on FRAUD SCHEMES.


To contact the City of Detroit CLICK HERE for email access. Phone number 503.854.3496 is being forwarded.

Red Cross Cascade Division CLICK HERE for donation and shelter information.



History of Detroit

Photos by Rick Jolin

The original name of the settlement was “Coe”. In October, 1891, “Detroit” received its new name with the founding of a Post Office, and the significant number of residents from Michigan who were living in the area.

Detroit is located approximately 50 miles east of Salem, Oregon, at about 1680′ elevation on the North Fork of the Santiam River. For many years it was only accessed by railroad (constructed in 1889) and was intended for the rail to be extend through the state to Boise, Idaho. The old town prospered from logging, fishing, and the great outdoors. By 1907, it had a population of 53 residents, and in 1926 road access was completed from Salem.

cityHallFrom the 1930’s until 1941, it was home to the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps – Camp F-20) which was located one mile east of town. Detroit had service stations, a post office, schools, stores, taverns, a church, a hotel, a railroad station, and the Canyon Movie Theater (1947-1952). It also had regular bus service. The population in 1945 grew to 250 residents. By 1949 the community had an active fraternal order of Eagles (FOE).

The Army Corps of Engineers selected the site of the Detroit Dam in the 1930’s. The dam would put the town 100 ft under water. After WWII, a cease building order on the town site expired and construction of the dam commenced on April 1, 1949. At the time, it was the 4th highest concrete dam in the world with dimensions of 463′ high and 1523′ long, and cost $70,000,000 to build.

At peak construction, in 1950, there were 3,000 workers on the project. Worker housing was named Camp Mongold, with dorms for 800 single men and accommodations for 100 trailers. It would eventually house 1,200 people. Many contractors did not accept this housing, and alternate residences were constructed in Mill City for officials and employees.

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