1927: Site was first established as a lookout point with a D-5 design ground house.
1927: "A lookout house was constructed on Bald Butte in 1927. The name of this point was later changed to Calamity Butte." (Malheur Historical Information)
November 1930: "Contrary to the usual discussion, we now have 'Are Cougars Lonesome?' During the night the Calamity Butte Lookout would hear something about the cabin, and one night when he had fresh meat, he heard something scratching on the screen door. These visits continued for several nights, and one day about 2 p.m. the lookout noticed his visitor sitting near the flag pole -- which was about 30 feet from the cabin. He decided he would make Mr. Cougar disperse, and made a wild dash at him. Mr. (or Mrs.) Cougar gave him a casual glance and took his time about getting off the ridge. This animal was seen several times during the summer, and never seemed in a hurry. Several deer were found that it had killed." (Six Twenty-Six)
October 9, 1935: Panorama photos taken by W.B. Osborne.
September 17, 1937: "Lookout fireman Cecil E. Jackson handed over his Guard badge last week and resumed his duties as principal of John Day school. Ex-Guard Jackson says the summer on Calamity Lookout has been very profitable from several view points. He not only carried on advance studies through an extension course but contained a working knowledge of fire detection and suppression. He also learned that cutting a section out of a telephone ground wire to use as 'haywire' may interrupt telephone communication. Anyway we hope to see Cecil back next summer." (John Day Valley Ranger)
1968: "Calamity Lookout - Radio cord on floor. This was brought to the attention of District in July. Very good housekeeping at lookout. The stoves and refrigerator are not grounded." (General Integrating Inspection, September 16 - 19 and 23 - 27, 1968)
1996: Construction of a new octagon shape cab on a 50-foot round timber tower commenced.
2001: The new lookout structure completed.
September 21, 2004: Both the new lookout tower and old ground cabin, along with garage and vault toilet underwent a visual inspection. (Malheur National Forest Archived files)