Albert G. Tabor first struck gold just below the town of Granite on the Fourth of July, 1862. Tabor named his claim the Independence since his strike was made on Independence Day, and the town that sprang up around the strike was also called Independence. However, the name was changed to Granite in 1876 when the people applied for a post office and found out there was already an Independence, Oregon. Granite was a center for mining activity for over 80 years. Today activity has ceased with nothing remaining but the town and a wealth of history.
Granite, Oregon is at an elevation of 4,695 feet. It is located in the Blue Mountains of eastern Oregon along the Blue Mountains Scenic Byway. The notorious Jack Long discovered gold in Granite while pulling his pack mule out of the mud. His discovery precipitated one of the largest gold rushes in Oregon. What's left from the scrum for gold is the massive piles of rock known as the "Chinese walls" and the hollow frames of the empty mines. There is approximately 40 registered mines found in the area of Granite. Granite OR, with an approximate population of 24, the mines now outnumber the people.