Nye Beach was named for John Nye who claimed a 160 acre parcel in 1866, In the 1880's the property was purchased by Sam Irvin, and in the 1890's the "summer people" began coming to Newport Beach in large numbers. They came by train to Yaquina Bay, where the railroad ended, then by ferry boat to the Bayfront, and finally by the boardwalk built in 1891 to connect the Bayfront with Nye Beach.
In 1905 Sam Irvin built a log cabin recreation center featuring a dance hall, bowling alley and a outdoor horse shoe pit. He also built a hotel which became Newport's first hospital during World War I. In 1912, the New Cliff House (now the parking lot at the Nye Beach turnaround) were built. The Yaquina Arts Association was built in 1913 as a bath house. Today the Historic Nye Beach oceanfront neighborhood retains the charm of its historic warm village atmosphere of shops, services, lodging, resturants and the art galleries by the sea.