Named for industrialist and United States Senator, Henry Gassaway Davis (1823-1916), paid between $5 and $15 an acre for the land. The town was incorporated in 1880 with a population of 909. Davis was dubbed “stump town” as Robert Eastham had barely cut down the trees before people moved in. The stumps left from the forests of spruce and hardwoods were left in place and buildings constructed around them. People claimed they could walk from one end of town to the other from stump to stump without touching the ground. By 1902, Davis had a population of about 3,000 and more than 80 businesses. Many of these historic buildings, including hotels, saloons, the opera house and the saw mill in Davis were eventually dismantled.