Join the Chamber
Joining the Zillah Chamber of Commerce is easy. Just fill out this
form completely and mail it along with your Chamber Membership Dues
to P.O. Box 1294, ZILLAH, WA 98953.
Include a business card or your business information and we will include it on this website and in our newsletter.
A History of Zillah
The early settlement of Zillah was made possible by two dominant individuals. Thomas F. Oakes, president of the Northern Pacific Railroad entrusted a man named Walter N. Granger to fulfill his vision of transforming the arid desert land of the lower valley into a lush green valley of agricultural productivity by means of irrigation from the nearby Yakima River.
After studying the matter for a few days, Granger decided to assume the challenge before him. During the 1890's the Sunnyside Canal project was begun. With construction out of the way, the promoter and sole superintendent of the canal, Granger, selected a townsite in 1891.
The question of naming the town arose. During the visit, the decision was made to name the town Zillah, in honor of Miss Zillah Oakes, daughter of the railroad company president. Development of the townsite occurred quickly. Shortly after, a hotel was built. Soon a general store, drug store and a blacksmith shop were added.
During 1894 School District #32 was organized and a schoolhouse was built. By the time the branch rail line come through Zillah, the area had two stage lines and two telephone
companies. The growing settlement was incorporated in 1911, and by 1920 had a population of 647.