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Our History
Our Name
The origin of the City’s name comes from a “battle” that never occurred. Battle Ground owes its name to an encounter between U.S. soldiers stationed at Fort Vancouver and Native Americans who lived in an encampment near the Fort. In 1855, a group of the Indians, led by Chief Umtuch, left the encampment and headed for the Cascade Mountains to the east.

U.S. Captain William Strong led a company in pursuit of the group and many believed that there would be a battle between them when they met. Captain Strong and his troops caught up with the Indians near present day Battle Ground. After lengthy negotiations, the Indians agreed to return to the encampment. There are different versions of what happened next, but Chief Umtuch was killed. The Indians asked that they be given time to bury their slain leader in privacy and according to their traditions.

Captain Strong granted their request; he and his men returned to Fort Vancouver alone. The Indians followed shortly thereafter. Captain Strong was recognized for the return of the group, freely without a battle, and the area became known as “Strong’s Battle Ground”.

A New City and a New Government
The City of Battle Ground was incorporated in June of 1951.  In 1997 the citizens of Battle Ground voted to adopt the Council-Manager Plan of Government.  Under this form of government, the City Council is responsible for the legislative function of the City such as establishing policy, passing local ordinances, approving budget appropriations, and developing an overall vision. The City Council appoints a professional City Manager to implement its policies, serve as advisor, and oversee administrative operations.

List of Mayors
  • 1952-1959 P.L. “Louie” Rasmussen
  • 1960-1963 Cleon “Mac” W. McConnell
  • 1964-1974 Emil F. Bechtold
  • 1975-1976 Harold W. Gasaway
  • 1976-1985 Everett A. Eaton
  • 1986-1994 Frank J. DeShirlia
  • 1995-1996 Marvin E. Brothers
  • 1997-2001 William J. Ganley
  • 2002-2007 John G. Idsinga
  • 2008-2012 Michael J. Ciraulo
  • 2012-2013 Lisa Walters
  • 2014-Current  Shane A. Bowman