Text Size:   A+ A- A   •   Text Only
Site Image
Survey and Inventory
Purpose of the Survey Program

Geiser Grand Hotel, Baker City, ORSurveys of historic and archaeological resources are important to the citizens of Oregon because they help us identify significant buildings and sites, and focus our limited resources on their preservation. Mandated by the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) of 1966, and Amendments, surveys are carried out and supported by the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), as well as by historic preservation professionals on contract to other state agencies, local governments, and businesses.

A survey is the process of gathering and recording information about cultural resources. Once recorded, resources are listed in the statewide inventory maintained by the SHPO and on city or county inventories maintained by local jurisdictions. Conducting surveys and creating an inventory of resources are usually the first steps leading to local recognition and preservation of those resources most important to our state and local heritage. 

Oregon Survey Program
The Oregon survey program is designed to identify potential historic resources through Reconnaissance and Intensive Level Surveys, culminating in the nomination of individual properties and historic districts to the National Register of Historic Places. Although the survey program is designed as a contiguous system, there are several opportunities throughout the process to design products for use in community education and planning, which may include interpretive signage, community presentations, and walking, biking, or digital tours. This survey process is also designed to meet the needs of those completing federal Section 106 and 4F documentation, and state and local agencies complying with state land-use laws.

Archaeological surveys are conducted by professional archaeologists and must be done according to the State of Oregon Archaeological Survey and Reporting Standards.

All identified archaeological sites (both prehistoric and historic) and isolated finds need to be recorded on Oregon SHPO Archaeological Services´ forms. These surveys and site forms must be completed to comply with the federal Section 106 compliance requirements as well as research conducted by universities, private consultants or Tribal archaeologists.

All survey documents are inventoried by the SHPO, and data is added to the archaeological database. Information on known archaeological sites is not available to the general public. Qualified archaeological researchers may make an appointment to search the archaeological files with the SHPO Archaeologist.
Those conducting surveys to comply with federal or state law should follow the procedures outlined on the Review and Compliance page of this website.
Please contact the appropriate SHPO staff member before completing any survey work.
Survey Guidelines and Resources

--> Guidelines for Historic Resource Surveys in Oregon [pdf] – SHPO guidelines for completing Reconnaissance and Intensive Level Surveys

--> Oregon Historic Sites Database – An online database for both National Register and surveyed properties
--> Oregon Data Codes List - List of style, material, and use categories for Historic Sites Database and SHPO forms. [pdf]

--> National Register Bulletins and Brochures - National Park Service webpage of useful publications on completing resource surveys and National Register documentation


--> State of Oregon Guidelines for Reporting on Archaeological Investigations [pdf]


--> Guidance for Recording and Evaluating Linear Cultural Resources  [pdf]

SHPO Contacts By Program Area
Oregon National Register and Survey Program
​Jason Allen
Historic Preservation Specialist
(503) 986-0579 

Review and Compliance Program

​Jessica Gabriel
Historic Preservation Specialist
(503) 986-0677 


Ian Johnson
(503) 986-0678
Archaeological Services
Dr. Dennis Griffin
State Archaeologist
(503) 986-0674
John Pouley
Assistant State Archaeologist
(503) 986-0675


Get Acrobat Reader