First People focuses on the history of the original people specific to this area of the Gorge, the Cascade Chinook. The replicated image of "Tsagaglalal" dominates the single monolith in the center of the space.
Those interested in the Lewis and Clark saga will not want to miss this exhibit. It provides a fascinating perspective of the Expedition based on both the archaeological and local Native American oral history...
The histories of the SP&S (Spokane, Portland & Seattle) Railroad, the development of Highway 8 and the era of the sternwheeler are interwoven in this gallery. For example, the Golden Spike Ceremony commemorating the completion of the SP&S line was held near today's approach to the Bridge of the Gods just west of Stevenson, WA.
The Harsh Demands gallery is the first one on second floor and features a short discussion of the positive and negative effects of hydro-electric power, the construction of dams and the many consequences on the river and wildlife.
A house-like structure introduces community development. Look for the roofer on top of the structure. He will obviously never finish the roof, just as communities will never finish changing, evolving and growing...
This gallery is divided into two separate spiritual quests with one being successful and the other a failure. The first section represents a dream of a man, which failed to materialize. Baron Fersen left Russia just before the Bolsheviks took over. He arrived in the United States and soon formed the scientific philosophical organization called The Lightbearers.
The Don Brown Rosary Collection, the world's largest of its kind, is displayed in the Spiritual Quest Gallery of the Columbia Gorge Interpretive Center Museum in Stevenson, WA. under the aegis of the Skamania County Historical Society.
The program in the second theatre presents a humorous review of some of the odd historical events in Skamania County and our positive outlook for the future. If one looks closely, the operation of a fishwheel harvesting Chinook salmon is shown.
Time prints of the millennia are boldly etched on the walls of the Columbia Gorge. They record a 40-million-year-long story of change, endurance and majesty. The first human imprints in the Gorge were left by the Indian cultures that flourished here for thousands of years, drawing both spiritual and physical strength from this.
When you visit the Columbia River Gorge Interpretive Center Museum, you are able to visualize and participate in the life of the Columbia River Gorge.