Welcome to The La Center Historical Museum




Pete Moe was born December 26, 1874 in Verdal Norway. He was the son of Pedar. The name of his first wife is unknown.  They came to the United States in 1883 and eventually settled in the Highland area of La Center.


Pedar was a painter and paper hanger by trade and passed his skills on to his son. They worked together and helped build the Highland Lutheran Church and put the first coat of paint on the building.


Pete married Della Brothers on August 6th, 1898.  In addition to his painting and wallpapering business; Pete took an interest in working on the steamboats and sternwheelers.  He worked alongside his father-in-law, Uriah Brothers, where they worked on the Mascot, and La Center. Together they built the Speelyai, the first gas engine boat. It ran on the East Fork from Woodland to Portland carrying cattle and dairy products. When it retired it became the end of an era for steamboats on the Lewis.


After Della passed away of cancer, Pete stayed on the home place where he raised apples and continued his painting and wallpapering business.


Pete also worked at the Vancouver shipyard during the war. He lived out his final days with his family in Portland and passed away on March 15, 1959 at the age of 85.

by Candy Falk