At the head of deep-water navigation on the Columbia River, Vancouver is the oldest city in the state. It was founded in 1824 as Fort Vancouver by the Hudson's Bay Company. During the 1860's, the young town prospered with gold rushes to eastern Washington and Idaho. Connections with the Northern Pacific from Kalama and the increased river traffic furthered the town's development into a busy shipping center.
Vancouver is a two-time winner of the All-America City Award. The town serves as a suburb of Portland, Oregon, where many of Vancouver's residents are employed. It is also a gateway to recreational opportunities at nearby Mount St Helens and the Columbia River. Vancouver is the county seat of Clark County. Interstate 5 runs through the city, near downtown.
There is also a Vancouver, British Columbia.
Vancouver is part of the Portland-Vancouver, Oregon-WA metro area.