Surrounded by farmlands, forests and mountains, Eugene is the seat of Lane County
at the confluence of the Willamette River
and McKenzie River
. It lies along Interstate 5
, between Salem
, in the Willamette Basin.
Settled in 1846 and named after Eugene F. Skinner, the original settler, Eugene was plotted in 1852 and again in 1853 on a higher elevation. It was incorporated in 1862. The city flourished as a regional lumbering and agricultural hub following the railroad's arrival in 1871.
Today Eugene, population 137,893, is a major lumber and wood products center. Eugene has long been considered one of the state's most diverse cities recreationally. The city features 250 miles of bicycle trails and water sports opportunities can be found along the Willamette River. Eugene is listed in the June 2002 issue of Bike magazine as "One of the five best Mountain Biking Towns in America"
.The city is the home of the University of Oregon.
Eugene is part of the Eugene-Springfield, Oregon metro area.