Founded on a Northern Pacific branch rail line in 1902, Othello was named for the Shakespeare play.
The town, located in the heart of the Columbia Basin Project, has many outdoor recreation opportunities. The Columbia National Wildlife Refuge is about 5 miles away with 23,200 acres of land for hiking, fishing, biking and wildlife viewing. Othello also has a single 9-hole public golf course, three miles outside of the city limits to the southwest. Other attractions include the Coulee Corridor Scenic Byway, Adams County Fair, and the Othello Rodeo.