The deer path…

To the left of the Grand Staircase (in the photo below) you can see what is sometimes referred to as “the deer path”.  Assumedly originally created and used by Bambi-types to go up and down the hill, we’re sure (since the staircase is closed) that it now carries some human foot traffic as well.

The trail’s crooked nature reminds of us of the first lines of the Sam Walter Foss poem The Calf-Path.

deer path

Photo circa 2012

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The Grand Staircase at Eastern Oregon University was designed by Oregon architect John Bennes and completed in 1929.  Sadly, it has deteriorated over the decades and was closed to public use in 2004.

The staircase is currently included on Restore Oregon’s Most Endangered Places List.  In November of 2015 it was determined that the staircase was too far deteriorated for restoration to be a viable option, however efforts are underway to fund reconstruction.

We started this blog and the accompanying Facebook page to raise awareness of the Grand Staircase and its architectural significance, post photographs and information of historical interest about the staircase, and share the stories and memories of those who love the staircase as much as we do.

To see a pictorial history of the staircase please visit our About page.

If you have any questions or have Grand Staircase memories, stories, or photos you would like to share please contact us at


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