Pete French Round Barn State Heritage Site Description
The Pete French Round Barn stands in the heart of Harney County and remains a monument to one man’s livestock empire. Peter French arrived in 1872 and began amassing land and cattle. By the mid-1880s, his enterprise had grown to 70,000 acres and 45,000 head of cattle.
Some claimed he didn’t legally acquire the land or water rights, which prompted land disputes and court cases and added to his controversial reputation. One of the disputes eventually led to his murder in 1897.
Although dubbed the ‘Cattle King,” French was the first rancher in the area to put up hay. He also raised thousands of