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Grant County is in eastern Oregon and is named for President Ulysses S. Grant, who served as an army officer in the Oregon Territory, and at the time of the county's creation was a Union general in the American Civil War. The seat of the county is Canyon City.
All or part of three wilderness areas are located in Grant County. Approximately 63% of the land area of the county is controlled by the Federal Government, most of which is controlled by the U.S. Forest Service, and the Bureau of Land Management. Grant County contains most of the Malheur National Forest and sections of the Wallowa-Whitman, Umatilla and Ochoco National Forests, and has more than 150,000 acres of federally-designated Wilderness Areas.
Natural beauty and outdoor recreation opportunities are abundant in Grant County year 'round. Thousands of acres of public land offer backpacking, cross country skiing, snowmobiling, hunting, fishing, horseback riding, or scenic driving. Campgrounds abound, with a wide range of facilities.
Grant County contains the headwaters of the John Day River, which has more miles of Wild and Scenic River designation than any other river in the United States. The geology of the County is rich, including one of the largest fossil concentrations in North America: The John Day Fossil Beds, which the U.S. Congress designated as a National Monument in 1974.