Scenic USA - Washington

Farmer's Community Hall

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Farmer's Community Hall - Farmer, Washington

Photo by Jim Stiles
Jim Stiles Photography

   Brought to life with the arrival of the Great Northern Railroad during the late 19th century, a thin line of small towns sprouted up in eastern Washington along the track line. Spurred on by mechanized farm equipment, crops of wheat, sorghum and potatoes began flooding eastern markets. Low points of over-production and insect infestations took a toll on many of these prairie towns. Battling price fixing with both railroad shippers and farm machinery suppliers, farmers who had borrowed heavily often went bankrupt or just barely survived.
   As U.S. Route 2 follows in step with the railroad line, small active communities and a few ghost towns are spaced out in this wide open farmland. Abandoned schoolhouses, churches, grain elevators and ghost town homes are some of the most interesting remnants of local history. There are many reasons behind the disappearance of life in a small town, but most often the basic cause is purely economical.
   One of the bright spots in Douglas County is this Community Hall in Farmer. Used as a community center, you'll find a lively gathering of area residents sharing pot luck dinners, weekend dances and wedding receptions.

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