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Congratulations to John Werner. He is the winner of our 23rd week of Orofino History Trivia.

The Burns Hospital is the answer for our 23rd week of a feature to celebrate Orofino's 100th birthday and the Bicentennial of the Lewis and Clark Corps of Discovery trek through Clearwater County.

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The Burns Building on the north corner of Johnson and College avenues was built in 1910 with a private hospital run by Dr. William F. Robertson on the upper floor. The hospital served a variety of needs from births to tonsillectomies until the late 1940s.

The lower floor housed the Bank of Orofino, Owl Drug Company and Wellman-Roberts Hardware in its early days, according to Orofino, Idaho: The Preservation of Cultural and Historical Past by Katie Eichert. Clearwater County rented space for their "courthouse" activities from 1911 to 1916 when they moved to the IOOF Building down the street. Other parts of the lower floor housed clothing stores and later general store. An art gallery and the school district also had space there at various times, according to Donna and Ted Leach, present building owners. For a number of years, the couple had a clothing store on the lower floor that included the area that had been Bank of Orofino.

According to the Leachs, the building once had five safes to serve its businesses. One is in the present barber shop which was at one time the Serveitas Jewelry and later Hughes Jewelry. Another is in the foyer that leads to the present upstairs offices and one in the back hallway to Awesome Augies. Both of those safes belonged to timber companies with offices in the building. The fourth is in Awesome Augies where the Bank of Orofino was once located. The fifth is now in the back of Duds and Irons where there was a clothing store. Some of the safes have had their doors removed, some remain.

Photos: Top--The Burns Building under construction.Bottom--Notice the dirt streets in this photo of the completed building. (Photos courtesy of Clearwater Historical Museum)

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Monday: Some people were born there.

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Window on the Clearwater
P.O. Box 2444
Orofino, ID 83544
Fax: 208-476-3407