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Idaho State Guide

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Idaho is known as ID and is the 14th largest state in the United States.
Image source: http://www.idaho.gov
Idaho, abbreviated as I.D is twice as large as the six New England states combined and is surrounded by Wyoming in the east, Canadian province of British Columbia in the north, Utah and Nevada in the south, and in the west it is surrounded by Washington. Idaho is commonly known as the “Gem State” as it produces a large number of precious and semi-precious stones, which is more than 70 types, of which few are rare and exclusive to the state. The name Idaho is derived because of its abundance of natural resources. Lead, copper, cobalt, Gold, silver, zinc and many other minerals are found in the mountains of Idaho. Among these minerals are gems such as zircon, topaz, opal, jasper, jade and tourmaline. Idaho entered the union as 43rd state on 3rd July 1890[1].


In 1863, President Lincoln signed the bill into law after a series of long debates on the bill that was passed to fix the boundaries of the territory and to include Idaho as a state. As a result, Idaho became the 43rd state on 3rd July 1890. It is estimated that for more than 14,000 years native people have lived in Idaho. In 1803, the event Louisiana included the Idaho territory, and very soon Lewis and Clark explored the territory, traversing Idaho in a navigable route to the Pacific Ocean. The only aim with which Lewis and Clark entered Idaho was to encounter the high peaks of the region that were spread over a vast area and appeared to be endless. The entry of Lewis and Clark was soon followed by Traders and trappers.

Kullyspell House was built near Lake Pend Oreille in 1809
Image source: www.bja.gov
Kullyspell House was built near Lake Pend Oreille in 1809, which was the primary mark in the Northwest by the non-citizens. In 1860, Franklin was established near the Utah border as Idaho's first town. The discovery of gold and silver between 1860 and 1863 led to the establishment of few more towns. As Idaho was rich with natural resources, it attracted farmers, researchers, miners and lot many people. Thereafter those people settled there and made Idaho as a state in 1863. In 1863, Lewiston was first nominated as the state capital but soon the Boise became the new capital after an year. The population almost doubled in a decade, that is, it increased from around 17,000 to 32,000.

The Nez Perce Indian War took placed in 1877 after the Pioneers and natives of Idaho clashed. Primary development occurred with the coming of power in 1882 and soon the telephone services started in 1883.

The Coeur d'Alene became the area having high deposits with the discovery of Silver. A constitutional meeting took place in 1889 and Idaho became the nation's 43rd state in 1890. North Idaho caught fire in 1910 which is renowned as "The Big Blowup". It created a huge loss as the fire consumed one-sixth of the region's forests[1].

Idaho's Historical Sites:

The Nez Perce National Historical Park and Trail

The park has 38 sites, which are speckled across four states. This is the only national park that celebrates people instead of a place. This site acts as National Park Service headquarter and works significantly to explain the history of Nez Perce. The Track runs from Oregon, Wallowa Lake to the Bear Paw Battleground in Montana. The Nez Perce Trail Foundation works for the safety and protection of the inheritance of the Nez Perce War of 1877.

The Lewis and Clark Trail

Meriwether Lewis and William Clark were amazing travelers who set out
journey across the Louisiana Territory.
US Highway 12 trails the Clark Trail and old Lewis along the Clearwater and Lochsa rivers
Image source: www.lewisandclarktrail.com
These true American met random people, faced tough circumstances and uncultivated lands to get a place in history. Today the US Highway 12 trails the Clark Trail and old Lewis along the Clearwater and Lochsa rivers until they combine with the Snake and prolong their voyage to the Pacific Ocean.

Cataldo Mission

The Cataldo Mission or Old Mission is also famous as the Mission of the Sacred Heart. It was erected in 1853 by the hard work of the members of the Coeur d'Alene Tribe and Catholic missionaries. It is the oldest standing building in Idaho. For over a decade, Coeur d'Alene tribe's main place of worship is Sacred Heart Mission.

Sacajawea Interpretive, Cultural and Educational Center

This park is devoted to the memorial and reminiscence of Sacajawea. She was a Lemhi-Shoshone woman who worked as an analyst for Lewis and Clark across the Bitterroot Mountains. It is situated in Salmon by the mountains of Sacajawea's and by the rivers. The center is an amazing experience for Clark and Lewis travelers to know more about the culture and history in an area.

The Paris Tabernacle

For more than a century, the Paris Tabernacle serves as a community center for Bear Lake Valley. This spiritual and architectural monument was built in 1889. It is situated in Southeastern Idaho and known as a worship place.

Statehood of Idaho

Idaho was declared as the 43rd state in 1890. Military law was affirmed after two years and central troops worked in controlling a series of mining attacks. After Frank Steunenberg took position of Governor, he enhanced central troops again in 1899 to maintain law and order, many miners were jailed and their union concealed. A major US Department of Energy research facility, Idaho National Laboratory has produced many noncommercial atomic power plants since 1951[1].

Timeline of Idaho

19th Century History of Idaho:

  • 1805: Lewis and Clark entered Idaho at Lemhi Pass
  • 1834: Fort Boise was established
  • 1849: California Gold Rush began
  • 1861: Lewiston was established
  • 1864: Boise City was incorporated
  • 1877: Nez Perce Indian War was fought
  • 1882: Northern Pacific Railroad was completed in Idaho
  • 1882: Construction on the New York Canal began
  • 1886: Territorial Capitol was completed
  • 1890: Idaho became the 43rd state of the United States

20th Century History of Idaho:

  • 1901: Swan Falls hydroelectric dam was completed
  • 1910: North Idaho caught fire, which is known as the "The Big Blowup"
  • 1915: Arrowrock Dam was completed
  • 1391: State symbols were adopted
  • 1936: First chair lift was installed on Proctor Mountain
  • 1939: First Albertson's store was opened
  • 1941: JR Simplot began potato dehydration operation
  • 1951: First Atomic power was produced at EBR1
  • 1972: Sawtooth National Recreation Area was completed
  • 1975: Port of Lewiston was opened
  • 1976: Teton Dam collapsed
  • 1995: North Idaho floods brought President to Idaho

21st Century History of Idaho:

  • 2009: Idaho hosted the Special Olympics World Winter Games

Geography of Idaho

Idaho has a varied and enthralling geography. Idaho consist areas of rock formations, lava flows, deep canyons, high desert, rolling hills and countless mountain arrays enclosed in timber. Idaho also lies in the area of the Columbia Plateau, which extends out of Washington and Oregon across southern Idaho encircling the gigantic and dynamic Snake River Plain. National forests swathes two-fifths of the state. Glacial lakes such as Lake Pend Oreille , Priest Lake and Lake Coeur d'Alene ascends above the peaks in the northern part of the state. High alpine lakes in the Sawtooth Mountains which can be reached only by hiking are the most visited place in the state.

Some of Idaho's most attractive geological features comprises the Mesa Falls on the Henry's Fork of the Snake River, City of Rocks National Reserve near Almo, Mount Borah near Mackay, Craters of the Moon National Monument lava flow, Great Rift National Landmark, a 50-mile series of earth fissures, the ancient caldera that consists of Island Park and Thousand Springs near Buhl.

Geographical facts:

  • Land area: 83,574 square miles
  • Area per person: 0.05 square mile
  • Water area: 823 square miles
  • Geographic Center Explanation: Custer County
  • Major Rivers : Coeur d'Alene River, Snake River, St. Joe River, St. Maries River, Kootenai River
  • Borders: North–Canada, south–Utah, east–Montana and Wyoming and west–Washington and Oregon
  • Highest Point: Borah Peak (12,662 feet above sea level)
  • Lowest Point: Snake River (710 feet above sea level)
  • Major Lakes: Lake Pend Oreille, American Falls Reservoir, Bear Lake, Coeur d'Alene Lake
  • Largest natural water fall: Shoshone Falls (300 m wide and 65 m high)
  • Temperature: 118 Fahrenheit (recorded on 28 July 1934 at Orofino)
  • Lowest Temperature: 60 Fahrenheit (recorded on 16 January 1943 at Island Park Dam)
  • Average Temperature: (15.1–90 Fahrenheit)
  • Largest city in population: Boise, population 205,671 (US Census Bureau 2010).
  • Largest city in area: Boise, with 80.05 square miles.

Topography of Idaho

The topography of Idaho is diverse and vivid. The primary causes for this assortment are the recency of volcanism, geological and uplift of ranges. This uneven scenery reproduces a multifaceted geologic history. The state is generally separated into Southern Idaho, North Central Idaho, Idaho Panhandle, Eastern Idaho, Central Idaho, Magic Valley, Palouse Hills and Southwestern Idaho. The southeastern part of the state holds moderately high and humid peaks.

Central Idaho

Central Idaho swathes continual huge volcanic lava fields, free-flowing rivers and captivating mountain ranges. Much of the land is multiple-use wilderness or National Forest and tourism in central Idaho has reinstated logging and mining as the main sources of revenue.

Eastern Idaho

It is home to the Snake River, Island Park and St. Anthony Sand Dunes adjacent to Grand Teton National Parks, Yellowstone and Craters of the Moon. Eastern Idaho is basically nerve center for outside exploration. This area of Idaho is entirely famous and wild which possess natural splendor with wildness.

Idaho Panhandle

Idaho Panhandle is the northern region of the Idaho which cover up the state’s ten northernmost counties, namely Kootenai, Idaho, Boundary, Lewis, Clearwater, Naz Perce, Benewah, Bonner, Latah and Shosshone.

Magic Valley

Magic valley comprises some of the most productive farmland
Image source: www.magicvalley.com
The counties that come under the Magic Valley are Twin Falls, Lincoln,
Gooding, Cassia, Camas, Blaine, Jerome and Minidoka. Magic valley comprises some of the most productive farmland in the northwestern United States.

North Central Idaho

North Central Idaho consists of deep canyon gorges, winding rivers and historic expeditions. This region is also known as powerful cultural and natural forces.

Palouse Hills

It consists loess, which trails from north of Lewiston to the southern end of Lake Coeur d’Alene, stretching across the state line to Colfax and Spokan.

Southern Idaho

This region consists of plunging waterfalls, towering rocks and ancient fossils. In most of southern Idaho, water flows into the Snake River and finally to the Pacific Ocean.

Southwestern Idaho

This region is enclosed by high desert plains, forested mountain peaks and sun drenched valleys. The capital city of Boise, most populous city of Idaho, is situated in southwestern region.

Climate of Idaho

Idaho’s climate is varied. It is inclined by Pacific weather patterns, which assist to restrain temperature edges. The southern part of the state has high summer temperatures than the north and is warmer throughout the year. In general, the northern part of the state has greater rainfall than southwestern or southeastern Idaho.

The four seasons are dissimilar in all areas of Idaho but not concurrent. Eastern Idaho has more extreme temperatures, continental climate and varied climatic condition.

  • Mean temperatures in Boise range from 29F (–2C) in January to 74F (23C) in July.
  • The corresponding extremes for Boise are –23F (–31C) and 111F (44C).
  • The highest (118F. (48C)) at Orofino on 28 July 1934.
  • average annual precipitation (1971–2000) at Boise was 12.2 in (31 cm), with more than 21 in (53 cm) of snow
  • The lowest temperature (–60F (–51C)) was recorded at Island Park Dam on 16 January 1943
  • Humidity is low throughout the state.
  • Precipitation in southern Idaho averages 13 in (33 cm) per year; in the north, over 30 in (76 cm).
  • Much greater accumulations of snow can be experienced in the mountains.

Mountain peaks of Idaho

Idaho has some of the most amazing views in the United States. Idaho contains many individual mountain ranges. The most significant ranges include the Sawtooths, Salmon River, Clearwater, Clearwater, Bitterroots, Caribou, Owyhee and Seven Devils ranges.

Demographics of Idaho

The major racial populations consist of Hispanic, white and blacks. The racial and ethnic make-up of Idaho’s population slightly differs that of the United States as a whole.

  • Population, 2014 estimate: 1,634,464
  • Persons under 5 years, percent, 2013 : 7.0%
  • Persons under 18 years, percent, 2013 : 26.5%
  • Persons 65 years and over, Persons 65 years and over, percent, 2013: 13.8%
  • Female persons , 2013: 49.9%
  • White alone, percent, 2013: 93.7%
  • Black or African American alone percent, 2013: 0.8%
  • American Indian and Alaska Native percent, 2013: 1.7%
  • Asian alone: 1.4%
  • Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 2013: 0.2%
  • Two or More Races, 2013: 2.2%
  • Hispanic or Latino 2013: 11.8%
  • White alone, percent, 2013: 83.1%

Economy of Idaho

Idaho's largest industries include forest products, mining, agriculture and food processing. Idaho's most valuable farm product is Beef cattle. Milk is a valuable livestock product. Idaho is also an important source of lamb and wool.

Idaho's top five agricultural products in terms of revenue are wheat, potatoes, cattle and calves, dairy products and hay. Idaho's main source of agricultural revenue is the potato crop.

Department of Agriculture

The Department of agriculture manages all the agricultural industries
Image source: www.agri.idaho.gov
The Department of agriculture manages all the agricultural industries. It promotes
environmental safety by creating. The department of agriculture manages all the agricultural industries and creates awareness by implementing various programs such as crop residue disposal , smoke management, ground-water quality check, pesticide management and so on. It provide security, safety and financial security within the agricultural industry. It exercises field check every year on a huge range of crops.

Contact Details
2270 Old Penitentiary Road
Boise, Idaho 83712
Phone 208-332-8500
Fax 208-334-2170

Economic Fast Facts:

  • Private nonfarm establishments, 2012: 42,8991
  • Private nonfarm employment, 2012: 493,7861
  • Private nonfarm employment, percent change, 2011-2012: 2.3%
  • Nonemployer establishments, 2012: 114,707
  • Total number of firms, 2007 151,671
  • Black-owned firms, percent, 2007: 0.2%
  • American Indian- and Alaska Native-owned firms, percent, 2007: 0.9%
  • Asian-owned firms, percent, 2007: 0.8%
  • Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander-owned firms, percent, 2007: 0.1%

Idaho Fast Facts:

  • Capital city: Boise
  • Largest city by population: Boise
  • Largest city by total land area: Boise (80.05 sq. miles)
  • State Tree: Western white pine
  • Sate Bird: Mountain bluebird
  • State Fish: Cutthroat trout
  • Sate Animal: Appaloosa horse
  • State Flower: Philadelphus lewisii
  • State Gem: Star garnet
  • Common Languages Spoken: English
  • Images to be inserted here. (State Fish, State Bird, Sate Animal, State Tree and State Flower)

Idaho Government

Idaho entered the union as 43rd state on 3rd July 1890. Idaho's constitution, which was adopted in 1889, became effective in 1890 upon statehood. Idaho is a Republican state with three distinct branches that are as follows: the Executive branch  the Legislative branch  and the Judicial branch (Supreme Court and lower courts). The state's chief executive is a governor who holds a term of four years after winning election.

Idaho Executive Branch
The Executive branch comprises of seven elected officers and their various departments.

Idaho Legislative Branch
The Idaho State Legislative branch comprises of two senates:

Idaho Judicial Branch

The Idaho judiciary consists of three levels of courts
Image source: http://www.isc.idaho.gov
The Idaho judiciary consists of three levels of courts: the Trial Courts which is known
as “District Courts” and include the Idaho judiciary consists of three levels of courts: the Magistrate Division, the Court of Appeals and the highest court in the State which is known as ‘’Supreme Court’’.

For more information on Idaho government click here.

Idaho Health

The Idaho Department of Health organizes many programs in the state to promote health among people
Image source: www.healthandwelfare.idaho.gov
The Idaho Department of Health organizes many programs in the state to promote health among people and deals with queries related to food or medical insurance. They also collaborate with other departments or agencies to work out the needs for all communities. Idaho has many health and wellness benefit services for citizens to encourage safety and security among them. Idaho benefit services include Medicaid, food assistance, child care assistance and cash assistance.

For more information click here.

Contact Details
Department of Health
700 West State Street
P.O. Box 83720
Boise, ID 83720-0043

Idaho Education

The Idaho State Department of Education works toward the vision, mission and goals of the State of Idaho education
Image source: www.sde.idaho.gov
The Idaho State Department of Education works toward the vision, mission and goals of the State of Idaho education. It consists of the Idaho State Board of Education, a policy-making body, which makes and implements all policies for all public education in Idaho.

Contact Details
Idaho State Department of Education
650 West State Street
Boise, Idaho 83720-0027
P: (208) 332-6800
F: (208) 334-2228
E: infosuperintendent@sde.idaho.gov

Some of the best universities in Idaho:

Boise State University
Boise State University is located in the capital of Idaho, in the western part of the state. Boise State students can choose from about 170 academic programs, including several master’s degrees in fields such as business, education, and art.

Contact Details
1910 University Dr, Boise,
ID 83725, United States
1 208-426-1000

Brigham Young University
BYU offers programs in liberal arts, engineering, agriculture, management, and law.

Contact Details
Provo, UT 84602, United States
1 801-422-4636

College of Idaho
The College of Idaho is a private, residential liberal arts college that prepares students to lead productive and fulfilling lives.

Contact Details
2112 Cleveland Boulevard
Caldwell, ID 83605
Phone: (208) 459-5011

Idaho State University
ISU offers graduate programs in business, education and engineering.

Contact Details
921 S. Eigth Avenue
Pocatello, ID 83209
Phone: (208) 282-0211

Lewis-Clark State College
Lewis-Clark State College is a public four-year state college offering instruction in liberal arts and sciences.

Contact Details
Lewiston, ID 83501
Phone: (208) 792-5272

Idaho Department of Transportation

The Department of Transportation works toward the transportation system of Idaho.
Image source: http://itd.idaho.gov
The Department of Transportation works toward the transportation system of Idaho. The department manages the safety of bridges, roads,airports, railways and seaports. Idaho transportation system includes roadway, airways, railways, sea, bus transit, spaceports, and bicycle and pedestrian facilities.

For more information click here.

Contact Details
3311 W. State Street • P.O. Box 7129
Boise, ID 83707-1129
(208) 334-8000


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