About This Place
Wilbur is a town in Lincoln County, Washington, United States. The population was 884 at the 2010 census.
Just prior to the construction of the Central Washington Railroad line in 1889, no towns existed west of Davenport in Lincoln County. One place along the line, "Wild Goose Bill's Ranch", run by Samuel Wilbur Condin, was assigned a post office by the Federal government. It had been located on the stage line between Davenport and the Mines in northern Washington and with the speculation of the railroad arriving soon seemed a likely place for a town. The town grew in earnest and was platted in April 1889 by Condin. With the arrival of the railroad later that year, Wilbur's growth increased rapidly with the establishment of bigger hotels, a bank, a lumber mill and countless other businesses. After several failed attempts to incorporate in 1889, Wilbur was officially incorporated on August 11, 1890. The boom had slowed by 1891 and came to a halt with the Panic of 1893.
Wilbur was brought out of the hard times of the 1890s during a record wheat harvest in 1897 which brought over $1,000,000 to circulation in the town. The construction of a road to Republic then a flourishing mining camp in what was to become Ferry County was expected to increase traffic to Wilbur, but the expected benefit never materialized. After a fire in 1901 destroyed several city blocks, a water works was established. Wilbur was electrically lighted in October 1903 by the Wilbur Electric Company.