Wagon trains followed the Oregon Trail through what is now known as
Ontario from 1843 until the turn of the century, even after the
Oregon Shortline Railroad was completed.
June 11, 1883, William Morfitt, James W. Viture, Daniel Smith and Mary
Richardson filed desert claims. The men cast lots to determine who
would name the townsite. Virtue won and named it for his native home,
The town was incorporated in 1896, and E.H. Test was its first mayor.
During Test's administration, the first jail was built for $100.
July 1, 1896, the city council instructed the city marshall to collect
and deposit $7.50 a month from prostitutes for the city's coffers.