In the early 1850's Horace H. Pinto told John Cutting of his intention to return to the "crossroads" on Cowlitz Prairie, where he planned to stake his claim near what is now Napavine. When Mr. Cutting, who was also looking for a place to settle, learned that Mr. Pinto had not yet filed his homestead claim, he hurried to Olympia and filed ahead of him. Mr. Pinto, who had named the town Napawyna, after an Indian Princess, was allowed to have two acres where he built his store and Post Office.
After the Cuttings came the Urquhart's who took up 160 acres of land on the MacDonald Prairie, near the present Evaline. James Urquhart changed the name of Napawyna to Napavine, because he had a dislike for Indian names.
The first sawmill was built by the Northern Pacific Railroad to provide ties. Soon a hotel, livery stable and confectionery store, which was later turned into a saloon, were built. Within a few years after the first store was established, Napavine grew to include six sawmills, a shingle mill, two column factories, a general repair shop, two shoe shops and a blacksmith shop. In addition to the manufacturing firms, Napavine had four general stores, two meat markets, two saloons, a drug store, a doctor, two hotels, a livery and feed barn, a real estate office and a carpenter. Napavine was in its' heyday from 1900 to 1925, when the population reached a peak of about 1500. Historians say that about the same number of people lived just outside the town in the surrounding area whre some of the mills were located.
The Town of Napavine was first incorporated in 1913. A few years later, financial difficulties forced the Town to discontinue its' Incorporation, at which time the town reverted to the Lewis County Commission until 1921 when Napavine was re-incorporated.
Between 1925 and 1929, despite the Great Depression, more streets were cleared, all the main streets were ballasted with river rock and board sidewalks were constructed.
At about that time, the old Christian Church was purchased and remodeled to serve as the City Hall. It served in that capacity until August 1, 2008, when the new City Hall was completed.