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The highway sweeps through rolling fields of pioneer-type farms. Through the 1940s, near the forested hills remained large stump areas. The countryside becomes wilder and more desolate there. Growths of vine and brush line the road and stretch away toward the scarred hills. Vader is a farming community and rail point on Olequa Creek.

Northern Pacific Railway officials changed the town’s original name, Little Falls, to Sopenah because of the confusion with Little Falls, Minnesota. Locals who disliked the name petitioned the legislature to change the name to Toronto. A dispute resulted, with a compromise agreement to name the town for a German resident named Vader.

Points of Interest Points of Interest icon

Grace Evangelical Church of Vader

This late Victorian Gothic frame church with its steeple and belfry began as a mission church serving the German, Finnish, and Italian immigrants living in the area. It was built in 1902 as Grace United Methodist and was re-named in 1927. It is the only church building remaining in the area from the early 1900’s.

Ben Olsen House

This was home to the president of the Stillwater Logging Company, one of the many businesses that once prospered in Vader, which at one time had a population of 5,000. Olsen sold his business to Weyerhaeuser, which closed the mill in 1913. It was destroyed by in the 1920’s. The home was built between 1905 and 1913 in the Queen Anne style.