Samoa (West Eureka)

In 1889 real estate developers formed the Samoa Land And Improvement Company and purchased 270 acres of land on the peninsula opposite Eureka. After John Vance Mill & Lumber Company’s Eureka mill burned in 1892, the owners decided not to rebuild the mill in Eureka but to purchase cheaper land in West Eureka or Samoa. (U.S. involvement in American Samoa was prominent in the news.) A sawmill and shop complex was built; though close to Eureka, there was no road access to Samoa, but only by boat. A town was necessary. In 1893 the Eureka & Klamath River Railroad Co. was incorporated to run from Eureka (by ferry) to Samoa, then to Essex where the Vance timber was located. In 1900 A.B. Hammond purchased the Vance mill and property. In 1912, Hammond Lumber Co. bought any privately owned residences to make Samoa a company town. The Samoa Block town center was built in the 1920s. Georgia Pacific purchased the Hammond Lumber Co. in 1956. Louisiana Pacific became owner due to a 1972 settlement with the Federal Trade Commission. Simpson Timber acquired the property primarily for the timber; they sold the town to Samoa Pacific which plans to develop it, but keep its historic nature.