The History of Idaho, The Gem of the Mountain, by James H. Hawley, Volume I, The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1920:

The Counties of Idaho, M - W


"The act creating Madison County from the southern part of Fremont was approved by Governor Haines on February 18, 1913, the same day that Jefferson County was created, and the same conditions applied to both counties, viz.: That the question of organizing a new county should be submitted to the voters living in the territory of the proposed new county and if a majority favored the proposition then the county should be organized, otherwise the act became void. The boundaries as defined in the act were as follows: 'Commencing at the southwest corner of section 34, township 4 north, range 41 east; thence east on the boundary line between Fremont and Bonneville counties to the boundary line between Idaho and Wyoming; thence north on said boundary line to where the same intersects the north fork of Birch Creek; thence westerly down said creek to where it intersects the main channel of the Teton River; thence down the main channel of the Teton River to the line between ranges 41 and 42 east; thence south to the township line between townships 6 and 7 north; thence following certain section and township lines toothe place of beginning.'

"The territory included within these boundaries embraced the present counties of Madison and Teton, the latter of which was erected into a separate county two years later. An election was held on November 5, 1913, at which the separate county proposition received a majority of 1,100 votes and Madison was fully organized on January 1, 1914. At the same election Rexburg was made the permanent county seat without opposition. Since the segregation of Teton County, Madison is bounded on the north by Fremont County; on the east by Teton; on the south by Bonneville; and on the west by Jefferson.

"Madison is well provided with railroads. The Yellowstone branch of the Oregon Short Line system passes through Rexburg, and east and west of this line are the branches known as the 'Beet Loops.' The most important railroad stations are Austin, Edmonds, Kruger, Rexburg, Salem, Sugar, Thornton and Walker. There are but few interior villages, Archer, near the Snake River and about ten miles south of Rexburg, and Herbert, in the southeastern part being the largest.

"Agriculture and stock raising are the leading occupations, alfalfa, grain and sugar beets being the principal crops. Part of the Palisade National Forest lies in Madison County and affords excellent grazing opportunities for stockmen. In 1918 the assessed valuation of property was $6,460,073."


"By the act of January 28, 1913, the eastern part of Lincoln County was cut off to form the County of Minidoka and Rupert was designated as the temporary county seat, the selection of a permanent county seat being left to the voters at the general election in November, 1914. Temporary county officers were appointed by the governor and at the election on November 3. 1914, the following were elected: L. C. Haynes, O. F. Allen and E. T. Hollenbeck, commissioners; C. H. Burgher, clerk; D. H. Gregory, sheriff; C. O. Cornwall, assessor; C. L. Teyer, treasurer; J. C. Bond, probate judge; John Sea, surveyor; Ida E. Sullivan, superintendent of public schools; W. A. Goodman, coroner. Rupert was made the permanent county seat and the courthouse there was completed in 1917, at a cost of $31,000.

"Among the early settlers were R. W. Adams, J. O. Johanneson, F. A. Nelson. W. N. Shilling, F. N. Victor and John C. Vincent. The county owes its existence chiefly to the United States irrigation project, the Government withdrawing the irrigable land, filing on the Snake River as a water source, and constructing the Minidoka dam and the irrigation canals, after which the land was homesteaded in tracts of forty to eighty acres each. Besides the area watered by gravity, the river develops about ten thousand horse–power at the dam and this is used during the crop season to pump water to a higher level. The dam and power plant will eventually belong to the settlers who pay for the project. A large number of those living upon the reclaimed land now have electricity at a low cost for power and lighting purposes. Potatoes and sugar beets are the leading crops, though dairying and hog raising are becoming important industries.

"Minidoka County in form resembles the letter 'L;' it is bounded on the north and east by Blaine County; on the south by the Snake River, which separates it from Cassia and Twin Falls counties; and on the west by Lincoln. Its area is a little less than one thousand square miles and the assessed valuation of property in 1918 was $7,144,394. The county is well supplied with railroads, the main line of the Oregon Short Line system crossing the county near the center, the Twin Falls branch leaves the main line at Minidoka and runs southwest, the Bliss cut–off intersects this branch at Rupert and runs west, and the Milner & Northside Railroad touches the western part. The principal railroad towns are Acequia, Adelaide, Heyburn. Minidoka, Paul and Rupert. A considerable part of the area was included in Jerome County created by the Fifteenth Legislature."


"This was one of the counties created by the Legislature of Washington Territory before Idaho Territory was organized. The First Legislature of Idaho readjusted the boundaries, which included a much larger territory than is now embraced within the county limits, to wit: 'Beginning at the mouth of the Clearwater River; thence up the same to the South Fork of the Clearwater River; thence with the South Fork to Lolo Creek; thence with Lolo Creek in an easterly direction to the summit of the Bitter Root Mountains; thence south to the main divide between the waters of the Salmon River and the South Fork of the Clearwater River; thence in a westerly direction along said divide to a point where the summit of said divide is crossed by the road leading from the head of Rocky Canyon to the Salmon River; thence to a point on the Snake River known as Pittsburg Landing; thence down the center of the channel of the Snake River to the place of beginning.'

"In addition to the region inclosed within the above described boundaries, all that part of Idaho north of the Clearwater River and west of the 116th meridian of longitude, the summit of the Coeur d'Alene Mountains and a line there from due south to the middle of the South Fork of the Clearwater River was attached to Nez Perce County for civil and judicial purposes. This attached territory included all the present counties of Latah, Benewah, Kootenai, Bonner and Boundary. The county was named for the Indian tribe that once inhabited the country.

"Among the pioneers of Nez Perce County was Perrin B. Whitman, the nephew and adopted son of Dr. Marcus Whitman, who was killed at the Waiilatpu Mission by the Indians in November, 1847. When only thirteen years of age he crossed the plains to Oregon with his uncle and at the time of the massacre was at The Dalles, whereby his life was saved. He grew to manhood in Oregon, married Miss Priscilla M. Parker in 1854, and in 1863 came to Lapwai, Idaho, where he was employed as an interpreter and for a time had charge of the Indian agency. He died at Lewiston on January 26, 1899.

"Ezra Baird, a native of New York State, came to Lewiston in 1862 and was for some time engaged in mining at various places in the territory, after which he embarked in the stage and express business with headquarters at Lewiston. In 1874 he was elected sheriff of Nez Perce County, and in September, 1886, was appointed United States marshal by President Cleveland, for the Territory of Idaho, dying in Boise County in 1913.

"On February 19, 1900, the Nez Perce County Pioneer Association was organized with G. C. Kress, president; Chester P. Coburn, vice president; Wallace B. Stanton, secretary; John N. Lindsey, treasurer; Edmond Pearcy, Robert Grostein, Joel Martin and M. A. Kelly, trustees. Of these officers Mr. Coburn came to Idaho in 1862, assisted in the organization of the territory, established a livery and sales stable at Lewiston for saddle and pack horses, and was later engaged in the cattle business. Mr. Pearcy came to the Oro Fino mining district in 1861. Later he and a Mr. Allen put up a sawmill at Lapwai. Mr. Allen was drowned in 1866 and Mr. Pearcy was afterward engaged in the ferry business. Robert Grostein, a native of Poland, was one of the early merchants of Lewiston.

"Nez Perce County claims a greater diversity of agricultural products than any otherlcounty in the state. The altitude varies from less than seven hundred feet at Lewiston to more than five thousand feet on Craig Mountain, which gives the county a climate conducive to the production of a wide range of plants and fruits. In the northeastern part wheat, barley and oats are the chief crops; north of the Snake River is a rolling prairie, where grazing is the leading occupation; south of the Clearwater, between the Snake River and the Camas Prairie, is the great fruit growing section of what is known as the 'Lewiston country,' where apples, peaches, pears, cherries, plums, apricots, grapes and berries of all kinds grow in profusion, and even almonds and English walnuts are raised.

"Two branches of the Northern Pacific railway system traverse the county, following the Clearwater and Potlatch rivers, and the Camas Prairie Railroad connects Lewiston with Grangeville. Along these several lines of railroad the principal stations in the county are Agatha, Culdesac, Gurney, Lapwai, Leland, Lewiston, Myrtle and Sweetwater. There are a number of interior villages, the largest of which are Cameron, Peck, Lookout, and Melrose so that the shipping and trading opportunities are above the average.

"In 1910 the population was 24,860, but since then the counties of Clearwater and Lewis have been created from Nez Perce. The assessed valuation of property in 1918 was $15,180,088, the county standing ninth in the state in valuation.


"As originally created, by the act of January 22, 1864, this county embraced a large part of Southeastern Idaho and all that portion of the present State of Wyoming west of the Continental Divide. The boundaries as defined by the act were as follows: 'Commencing at the point of intersection of the meridian of longitude 113° with the northern boundary of Utah Territory, and running from thence north along said meridian 113° to the Snake River; thence up said river in an eastern direction to the 112th meridian; thence north on said meridian to the summit of the Rocky Mountains, and from thence along said summit in an eastern direction to the boundary of Colorado Territory, and from thence west along said boundary of Colorado Territory to Utah Territory, and from thence along the said northern boundary of Utah to the place of beginning.'

"If the reader will take a map and trace these boundary lines, he will notice that Oneida County included all the present county of that name, Bannock, Bear Lake, Franklin, Madison, Clark, Caribou and Teton counties, the eastern half of Fremont, a large part of Power, nearly all of Bon'neville and the eastern portion of Bingham. The county seat was located at Soda Springs by the act creating the county, but on January 5, 1866, Governor Lyon approved an act removing it to Malad City, which is still the seat of justice. It is the terminus of a branch of the Oregon Short Line Railroad, which connects it with Brigham, Utah. This is the only railroad in the county.

"After the numerous changes by the organization of new counties Oneida is now composed chiefly of the Malad Valley. The mountain ranges that intersected the country and divided the original county into isolated districts, have become boundary lines or attached to other counties and the Malad Valley is all that is left. In 1879 a newspaper called the 'Idaho Enterprise' was started at the old town of Oxford (now in Bannock County) and subsequently removed to Malad City. This newspaper issued a 'holiday number' in 1910, from which the following extracts are taken:

'It is agreed that the first permanent settlement of Malad Valley occurred in 1864. In the early spring of that year four men and three boys came to what is now Malad City and in May they began the work of reclaiming the valley and transforming it from a vast wilderness, the home of Indians and wild game, to a community of wealthy farmers, of substantial business concerns, of beautiful homes and fine public buildings.

The natural conditions were such as to make this a very easy place for the pioneer to get a start. A natural meadow provided ample forage for the live stock, and a number of fairly good sized mountain streams run through the valley, so that the matter of securing water for irrigation was quite easily solved. Great forests of pine trees grew in the mountains, so timber for building homes, for fencing, for fuel and for all purposes was easily accessible. There was an abundance of fish in the streams and game of all kinds was plentiful. No doubt that little party of trail blazers noted all these things before they decided to cast their lot at a point so remote from the centers of civilization.

'In the winter of 1864–65 five families made their homes here, but during the summer of 1865 there was a great acquisition to the valley's population, ten families having moved in during that year from Salt Lake and the settlements of Northern Utah. From that time on for a number of years the increase in wealth and population was rapid. Within a few years all of what was then considered the desirable land, that lying directly under some stream, was taken, and it was thought that the valley had reached its capacity in the matter of providing homes. Then followed a period when the people did not care for land. Grasshoppers and crickets infested the country in such numbers as to make the raising of any form of vegetation almost impossible. This lasted for about fifteen years. and during that time it was necessary for the men to seek employment in all parts of the country. Some went to the mines at Butte, some to the railroad then building across the continent, while many of them took to freighting.

'Providence seemed to take a hand in directing the affairs of this community, for when, in 1879, the Utah & Northern Railroad was built and practically put an end to the freighting industry, which had come to be the principal source of revenue to the people, the grasshoppers and crickets disappeared and the real work of developing the resources of the valley was commenced. The people were forced to depend more and more upon themselves. During the period of our prosperity flour and sawmills had been established here, so that when the time came that the people had to depend almost entirely upon themselves and what they produced for a livelihood, they were pretty well equipped to cope with the exigencies of the time.'

"Cattle raising has been the leading industry for many years and thousands of cattle are shipped every year. Grain is the leading crop, there being four large elevators at Malad City. Alfalfa and sugar beets are also raised, and in recent years dairying is becoming an important feature. The population of the county in 1910 was 15,170 and in 1918 the valuation of property for tax purposes was $5,129,722."


"This was the first county to be organized by an Idaho Legislature after the creation of the territory. On the last day of December, 1863, Acting Governor Daniels approved an act erecting the County of Owyhee, with the following boundaries: apos;Beginning on the Snake River at the mouth of the Owyhee and running due south along the eastern boundary line of the State of Oregon to the northern boundary of Nevada Territory; thence east with the boundary line of the Territory of Nevada and Utah to the 113th meridian of longitude; thence north with said meridian to the Snake River, and thence down the channel of the Snake River in a westerly direction to the mouth of the Owyhee, the place of beginning.'

"As thus bounded, the county embraced all of the present counties of Owyhee, Twin Falls and Cassia. It is the second largest county in Idaho, occupying the southwest corner of the state, and is now bounded on the north by the counties of Canyon, Ada, Elmore and a little of Gooding, being separated from those counties by the Snake River; on the east by Twin Falls County; on the south by the State of Nevada; and on the west by the State of Oregon. The name 'Owyhee' is said to be of Hawaiian origin, and that it was given to the river by two Kanakas who were in the employ of the Hudson's Bay Company.

"Ruby City was named in the creative act as the county seat, but it was removed to Silver City in 1866. The first county officers were: D. H. Fogus and George Carter commissioners (the name of the third commissioner cannot be learned); Gilmore Hays, clerk; Lyman Stanford, sheriff; T. D. Beckett, treasurer; Ezra Mills, assessor; Frank R. Browker, surveyor; O. H. Purdy, superintendent of public schools; L. F. Alpey, coroner. The present courthouse was built about 1870, at a cost of $15,000, though some repairs and alterations have since been made.

"Owyhee County got its first settlement and notoriety from mining. In May, 1863, a party of twenty–nine men left Placerville to look for the lost mine known as the apos;Blue Bucket Diggingsapos; and on the 18th found gold on Jordan Creek (so named after Michael Jordan, one of the party), about six miles below the present Town of Dewey. The names of these twenty–nine men, with a further account of their adventures and discoveries, are given in Chapter VIII. Other pioneers of the county were: David and Peter Adams, Joseph Babington, C. D. Bacheler, Robert Bruce, Frederick and J. M. Brunzell, T. J. Butler, Peter Connors, W. H. Dewey, Fred and John Grete, George W. Gilmore, Charles M. Hays, R. H. Leonard. Robert Noble, Arthur Pence and John Turner, most of whom were connected with mining operations. During the early days the War Eagle Mountain produced over fifty million dollars in silver and some mining is still carried on in the county.

"Geologically, the formation of Owyhee is mainly the lava deposits so common in the plains along the Snake River. Along the Snake River, in the northern part are the sedimentary deposits of what is believed to have been an old lake bed. In this section the lands are very fertile and several thousand acres have been brought under irrigation. The eastern half of the county is composed chiefly of lavan and sage brush plains, through which flows the Bruneau River, and in the western part there are considerable areas of granite. The elevation increases from 2,200 feet in the Snake River Valley to 8,500 feet in the southern part. Grazing is the principal occupation on the high plateaus and in the mountainous districts, the county standing first in 1917 in the number of cattle and sheep returned for taxation – 32,202 cattle and 221,964 sheep. The total assessed valuation of property for 1918 was $5,444,963.

"Two branches of the Oregon Short Line railway system touch the northwestern part of the county, the first leaves the main line at Nampa and terminates at Murphy. about eight miles from the Snake River, and the second runs along the west side of the Snake River from Ontario, Ore.. and terminates at Homedale. The only railroad stations in the county are Homedale, McCoard, Murphy and Riva. People living in the northeastern part of the county find railroad accommodations in the main line of the Oregon Short Line system, which here runs close to the north bank of the Snake River. There are a number of small towns scattered over the county, the most important being Bruneau, Castle Creek, De Lamar, Dewey, Grandview, Hot Spring, Oreana and Silver City. The last named is the county seat. In 1910 the population was 4,044."


"On February 28, 1917, Governor Alexander approved an act directing the county commissioners of Canyon County to call a special election for May 11, 1917, in that portion of the county north of the line dividing townships 5 and 6 north, which was to be erected into the County of Payette, provided two–thirds of the voters living in the territory voted in favor of the new county. The act also located the county seat at Payette 'until removed as provided by law,' and authorized the governor, in the event the required majority voted in favor of the new county, to appoint officers therefor to serve until the next general election. Very few dissenting votes were cast and Governor Alexander appointed the following officers, who were to assume their duties on May 29, 1917: C. W. Giesler, Walter Burke and B. F. Tussing, commissioners; W. A. Cloud, auditor and recorder; R. L. Hollenbeck, treasurer; J. H. Harrigan, sheriff; O. E. Bosson, assessor; V. B. Ledman, probate judge; Monroe P. Smock, prosecuting attorney; W. C. Sturdevant, surveyor; Fae Sutton, superintendent of public instruction.

"Payette County is bounded on the north by Washington County; on the east by Gem; on the south by Canyon, from which it was taken; and on the west by the Snake River, which separates it from the State of Oregon. It is one of the small counties of the state, having an area of about four hundred and fifty square miles, but is one of the richest counties from an agricultural standpoint, large quantities of wheat, hay, cream. potatoes and fruits being shipped from the county every year. The early history of Payette is interwoven with that of Ada and Canyon counties, of which it was successively a part before being erected into a separate subdivision of the state.v One of the early settlers was David S. Lamme, who came to Idaho in 1864 and tried his luck at mining for a time, when he bought 320 acres of land in the Payette Valley, and was one of the founders of the City of Payette. Peter Pence first came to the Boise Basin in 1862 and followed mining until 1867, when he settled on a ranch about ten miles up the river from where Payette now stands. He and his family frequently slept in the bushes near their cabin for fear of an Indian attack.

"Payette, the county seat, is located in the northwestern part of the county at the junction of the main line and Idaho Northern branch of the Oregon Short Line railway system. Other railroad stations are Falk, Fruitland and New Plymouth. There are no interior villages of importance. In 1918 the assessed valuation of property was $4.764,374. "


"Power County was created by the act of january 30. 1013, from parts of Bingham, Blaine, Cassia and Oneida counties. nearly two pages of the laws of that session being taken up with the technical description of the boundaries. It is an irregularly shaped county, bounded on the north by Blaine and Bingham counties; on the east by Bannock; on the south by Oneida and Cassia; and on the west by Cassia and Blaine. The act creating the county assigned it. to the Fifth Judicial District, gave it one representative in the lower branch of the Legislature and a senator jointly with Oneida County, and located the county seat at American Falls, where the power plant is located from which the county takes its name. At the first election the following officers were chosen: W. S. Sparks, M. E. Walker and C. F. Eggars, commissioners; Paul Bulfinch, clerk and auditor; D. B. Jeffries, sheriff; F. Nettie Rice, treasurer; O. F. Crowley, assessor; A. C. Haag, probate judge; S. L. Baird, prosecuting attorney; Madge E. Whistler, superintendent of public instruction; Frank Moench, surveyor; H. R. Hager, coroner. At the same election the county seat was permanently established at American Falls by popular vote.

"Along the Snake River, which flows through the county, the lands are irrigated and are highly productive. In the northern part there are some arid lands and about the Village of ROckland, south of the center, dry farming is carried on successfully, the precipitation averaging about seventeen inches annually. American Falls enjoys the reputation of being the heaviest wheat shipping town on the Oregon Short Line Railroad, the main line of which crosses the county north of the center, crossing the Snake River at American Falls. The principal interior villages are Arbon, near the Oneida County line, and Rockland, on the Rock Creek about fifteen miles south of American Falls.

"Power County is too young to have much history of its own. The first settlements were made while the territory belonged to Bingham and Oneida counties. A portion of the Fort Hall Indian reservation extends southward into the county and the early settlements were made near the borders of the reservation. In 1918 the assessed valuation of the property was $9,749,210, the county standing fourteenth in the state in this respect."


"A county called Shoshone was created by the Legislature of Washington Territory in January, 1858, which included all that part of the present State of Idaho north of the Snake River. In December, 1861, the southern part of this county was cut off to form the counties of Idaho and Nez Perce, and the first session of the Legislature of Idaho Territory, by an act approved on February 4, 1864, defined the boundaries of Shoshone as follows: 'Beginning at the mouth of the South Fork of the Clearwater River; thence up said South Fork of the Clearwater to the Lolo Fork; thence with the Lolo Fork in an easterly direction to the summit of the Bitter Root Mountains; thence in a northerly direction with said range of mountains until said range turns in a westerly direction and is called the Coeur d'Alene; thence with said Coeur d'Alene range of mountains in a westerly direction to a point from which running a line due south will strike the mouth of the South Fork of the Clearwater River,the place of beginning.'

"In the old records of Walla Walla County, Washington, may be found the certificate of George Galbreath, county auditor, of the returns of an election held in Shoshone County on July 8, 1861, at which the following officials were elected: J. Tudor, W. Cardwell and J. C. Griffin, commissioners; D. M. Jessee, probate judge; R. L. Gillespie, sheriff; E. L. Bradley, auditor; L. H. Coon, treasurer; H. M. Bell, assessor; D. Bell, coroner. These were probably the first county officers ever elected within what is now the State of Idaho, and it was in Shoshone County, as then constituted, that the first discovery of gold was made on the Oro Fino Creek in 1860. The Moose Creek mines, northwest of the Oro Fino district, were discovered in 1862 and worked for a short time, when they were abandoned. About this time a man named Petjade established a station on Ford Creek, a small tributary of the Clearwater south of the Oro Fino mines, at which prospectors and others bound for the mining camps could find 'entertainment for man and beast.'

"A little later Thomas O'Brien, Ernest Hilton and William Shepard discovered some good placers on Moose Creek, near the ones that had been worked in 1862, and founded 'Moose City,' which within a short time boasted a saloon, an eating house, three general stores and a population of 300. Modern map makers know nothing of Moose City, as it has long since ceased to exist.

"In the Fraser country, along Lolo Creek, a man generally known as 'Texas' settled in 1862, opened a station and did some farming. He sold to Milo Thomas about 1866, and Thomas sold out to Hour??? stockmen. John Alsop settled in this part of the county in 1874 and was shortly afterward followed by Patrick Keane. The Fraser country is now in Clearwater County. Others who settled in this section during the latter '60's and early '70's were Patrick Gaffney, Harvey Setzer, William Gamble and Levi Goodwin.

"Edward Hammond, an old resident of the county, writing to the Lewiston Teller in 1881, gave the assessed valuation of property in Shoshone as $38,981, and estimated the population at seventy&ndashp;five, of whom about a dozen were farmers. In 1918 the assessed valuation was $31,140,6l0, only one county in the state (Ada) returning a larger valuation. Such has been the marvelous progress of Shoshone County during a period of less than forty years, due mainly to the discovery of the rich mines in the early '80's.

"Capt. John Mullan, who built the military road across Northern Idaho before the Civil war, noticed indications of gold in the mountains of Shoshone County, but said nothing about it at the time for fear his workmen would desert road building for mining. A. J. Pritchard, R. T. Horn and a man named Gillett, three experienced miners, made a prospecting tour up the north fork of the Coeur d'Alene River in the summer of 1880 and near the present Town of Murray, on a small stream since known as Pritchard Creek, struck 'pay dirt.' They remained in the mountains until the approach of winter, when they returned to the settlements. The following summer Pritchard returned and continued prospecting along the streams, finding values in several places along the streams. He then wrote to a few friends asking them to join him the following spring with the necessary tools and supplies for working the claims, at the same time enjoining secrecy, but his request in this respect was not heeded and when the time came to start for the diggings he found a crowd gathered, many of whom were inexperienced and without the usual equipment of the miner. He advised them not to undertake the trip to the rough, mountainous region until they were better prepared, but they threatened him with personal violence, even hanging, and he finally yielded to their importunities. When they reached the mines the waters in the creeks were so high that nothing could be done and many of those departed, cursing both Pritchard and the country. The few who had come prepared for the real work of development remained through the summer and were richly rewarded, and by 1884 the usual stampede was on to the new discovery.

"In the meantime Tom Irwin, another prospector, had found gold in the Coeur d'Alene country, and it has been claimed that he was really the first to discover gold in this part of the territory, but the evidence is decidedly in favor of Pritchard and his associates. Irwin's discovery, however, was the means of bringing a large number of gold seekers to the new field. Eagle City and Murray were laid out in 1884 and the latter was made the county seat. The lead silver section on the South Fork were discovered in 1886 and soon became the principal mining section of the county. As the placer mines were worked out, quartz mining was introduced, the Bunker Hill and Sullivan being one of the first of this class in the county. The buildings at this mine were blown up by dynamite on April 29, 1899, by striking miners, an account of which is given in another chapter. A narrow gauge railroad (now part of the Northern Pacific system) was built, after which the development of the mineral deposits was more rapid. Shoshone is the leading mining county of Idaho. In 1917 it produced more than nine–tenths of the mineral wealth of the state, according to the report of the state mine inspector.

"Three lines of railroad—the Northern Pacific, the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul, and the Oregon–Washington Railroad & Navigation Company—cross the county from east to west, and the Northern Pacific has branches running into the mining districts. Along these lines are numerous small stations, the most important of which are Avery, Black Bear, Bradley, Burke, Clarkia, Enaville, Gem, Kellogg, Kingston, Mace, Mullan, Murray, Paragon, Wallace (the county seat) and Wardner. Away from the railroads the county is not thickly settled, the total population in 1910 being 13,963, more than one–half of which was in the four towns of Kellogg, Mullan, Wallace and Wardner. The northern and southern portions of the county are heavily timbered, over one and a quarter millions of acres lying in the national forest reserves."


"Situated on the eastern border of the state, the northeast corner being only about ten miles from the Yellowstone National Park, is Teton County, one of the new counties of Idaho. It was taken from Madison County by the act of January 26, 1915, with the following boundaries: 'Beginning at a point on the boundary line between Madison and Bonneville counties two miles east of the range line between ranges 42 and 43 east; thence easterly and southerly on the boundary line between Madison and Bonneville counties, as now established, to a point where said boundary line intersects the boundary line dividing the states of Idaho and Wyoming; thence north along the boundary line between the states of Idaho and Wyoming to a point where said dividing line intersects Birch Creek; thence westerly and down the center of said creek to where it intersects and runs into the main channel of the Teton River; thence down the said main channel of the said Teton River to where the same intersects the section line between sections 16 and 17, township 7 north, range 43 east; thence due south along said line to the place of beginning.'

"The county was named for the Three Tetons, prominent peaks forming part of the main range of the Rocky Mountains. It was attached to the Ninth Judicial District and the governor was authorized to appoint officers within thirty days after the taking effect of the act, which located the temporary county seat at Driggs, a permanent county seat to be selected by the voters at the general election of 1916. Pursuant to the provisions of the act the governor appointed the following officers: E. B. Edlefsen, M. E. Phillips and Benjamin Jones, commissioners; W. F. Robertson, clerk of the District Court; S. R. Evans, sheriff; H. D. Fullmer, assessor; Charles Cherrington, treasurer; B. W. Driggs, prosecuting attorney; Samuel Swanner, probate judge; Ezra C. Dalby, superintendent of public instruction; Samuel Kunz, coroner.

"These officers assumed their duties at various times between March 4, 1915, and the first of July following and served until the general election of 1916, when Driggs was made the permanent county seat. Teton County is bounded on the north by Fremont County; on the east by the State of Wyoming; on the south by Bonneville County and on the west by the County of Madison. It is one of the smallest and highest counties in the state, its average elevation being 5,500 feet above sea level. It comprises the Teton Valley and the tributary country along the Wyoming line. A large part of the county lies in the Palisade National Forest, where grazing is the leading occupation. Timothy, alsike clover and field peas are the principal farm crops and dairying is becoming an important industry. The rainfall ranges from twenty to twenty–four inches annually and farming is carried on without the aid of irrigation. There is fine hunting in the mountains and fishing in the streams, and this fact, with the cool summers, brings many sportsmen and tourists every year.

"Driggs is the most important town. Victor, in the southern part, is the terminus of the Teton Valley branch of the Oregon Short Line railway system. Judkins and Tetonia are small villages on the line of railroad, and Bates, Hunnidale and Palisade are the largest in the interior. The population in 1910 was included in that of Fremont County, which was 24,606, and in 1918 the assessed valuation of property was $2,884,727."


"One of the richest counties in the southern tier is Twin Falls, which was created by the act of February 21, 1907, from the western part of Cassia County. It is bounded on the north by Gooding, Lincoln and Minidoka, from which it is separated by the Snake River; on the east by Cassia County; on the south by the State of Nevada; and on the west by Owyhee. Its area is 1,888 square miles and its name is derived from the picturesque falls in the Snake River near the northeast corner of the county. About half the land in the county is irrigated and there is very little non–irrigated farming. The principal occupations are farming, fruit growing, dairying and stock raising. In 1917 the county reported 10,644 horses, the largest number of any county in the state; 18,152 cattle; 104,688 sheep; and 5,128 hogs.

"The act creating the county designated the City of Twin Falls as the county seat and authorized the governor to appoint county officers. Governor Gooding therefore appointed the following officials on February 21, 1907, the same day be approved the act creating the county: Harry T. West, clerk and ex–ofiicio recorder; George D. Aiken, sheriff; Carl J. Hahn, treasurer; James McMillan, assessor; Frank E. Chamberlain, probate judge; F. A. Hutto, prosecuting attorney; Miss Edna DeBow, superintendent of public instruction; John D. Rogers, coroner; John F. Hansen, Charles H. Mull and L. E. Salliday, county commissioners.

"Some idea of the importance of Twin Falls County as an agricultural and fruit growing section may be gained from the following interview given to the Boise Capital News of December 16, 1913, by Judge Charles O. Stockslager, the judge of the Twin Falls District Court:

'The citizens of Twin Falls County and that entire section are of the highest type and most progressive. A look at their farms would convince anyone of the truth of this statement. They have developed a wonderful country and they are not through yet. And it is a great country. I can remember the time, some years ago, when I advised some of the farmers there not to plant fruit trees, because that was not a fruit country, I thought. I am sorry I ever gave that kind of advice. Some of them took it and others disregarded it. Today the Twin Falls section promises to become one of the leading, if not the leading fruit section of the state. It seems to be ideally located. The trees are held back from the danger of late frosts and the pests that do so much damage in the lower altitudes are unknown in the Twin Falls section. Orchards that are now in full bearing produce the largest and very best quality of fruit. * * * The last statements issued by two of our banks show an increase of $1,000,000 in deposits during the month of October. The farmers, you see, had disposed of some of their crops and the returns had been banked. The railroad was taxed to its utmost capacity to move out crops this fall and the crops next year will be greater. Grains yielded abundantly, there was a big potato crop, fruit was abundant, alfalfa and hay were almost unlimited. '

"The Twin Falls branch of the Oregon Short Line railway system follows the Snake River through the northern part of the county, terminating at Buhl, and at the City of Twin Falls a branch leaves this line for Rogerson, near the center of the county. Buhl, Filer, Hansen, Hollister, Kimberly, Murtaugh, Rogerson and Twin Falls are all important shipping points, and there are a few minor stations. Castleford, in the Salmon Valley, is a postoffice and trading point for the farmers living in the western part. The population was 13,543 in 1910, but through the development of irrigation projects there has been a large increase in the number of inhabitants since that time. In 1918 the county returned a property valuation of $21,141,193, only three counties in the state—Ada, Shoshone and Bannock—showing a larger valuation."


"Valley County was created by the act of February 26, 1917, from the northern part of Boise and the southern part of Idaho counties. It is bounded on the north by Idaho County; on the east by Lemhi and Custer counties; on the south by Boise County; and on the west by the counties of Gem and Adams. The county takes its name from the Payette Valley, sometimes called the 'Long Valley,' the upper portion of which lies in this county. The act creating the county fixed the county seat at Cascade until the general election of 1918, when the voters were to decide on a permanent county seat, and authorized the governor to appoint county officers. Governor Alexander appointed J. W. Hartsell, S. L. Cantrall and W. D. Patterson, commissioners; Arthur C. Tracey, clerk and auditor; F. C. Sherrill, sheriff; J. Ethel Moss, treasurer; R. M. Parks, assessor; L. S. Kimball, probate judge; F. M. Kerby, prosecuting attorney; Tirza J. Wayland, superintendent of public schools; G. E. Noggle, coroner. At the election in 1918, Edward A. Smith was elected sheriff, A. C. Tracey, reelected clerk and R. M. Parks, assessor; L. S. Kimball, probate judge, Anna B. Harula, treasurer, R. B. Ayers, county attorney and S. L. Cantrall, E. A. Williams and A. N. Dowell, commissioners.

"Lumbering, mining and farming are the leading occupations. Around the shores of the Great Payette Lake are fine forests of timber and several sawmills have recently been erected. In the eastern part the Deadwood, Profile, South Fork and Yellow Pine mining districts are being actively developed, two mills having been installed in the last named district. The chief farming section is in the 'Long Valley,' which is one of the best sections of the state for the production of timothy hay, and the Payette Forest Reserve, which extends into this county, affords splendid opportunities for grazing. Dairying is rapidly growing in favor with many of the farmers.

"The Idaho Northern branch of the Oregon Short Line railway system runs through the valley and provides good transportation facilities. The principal towns of the county are located along this line of railroad, viz: Arling, Cascade, which was made the permanent county seat by popular vote at the election in November, 1918, Donnelly, McCall, Norwood, Roseberry and Van Wyck. Near the center of the valley, but off from the railroad, is the Village of Alpha, and Brewer, Comfort, Logan, Profile, Roosevelt and Yellow Pine are trading centers for the mining districts. In 1918 the assessed valuation of property was $4,387,417."


"Thirty–one of the forty–eight states in the American Union each has a county named Washington and all were either directly or indirectly so called in honor of Gen. George Washington, the first President of the United States. Washington County, Idaho, was created by the act of February 20, 1879, with boundaries that included all the present counties of Washington and Adams, and that portion of Gem County lying north of the Second Standard Parallel. It was reduced to its present dimensions when Gem County was created in 1915, and is now bounded on the north by Adams County; on the east by Adams and Gem; on the south by Gem and Payette; and on the west by the State of Oregon, from which it is separated by the Snake River.

"Section 6 of the creative act provided for a special election for county officers and to decide the location of the county seat. The election was held on April 14, 1879, and the following officers were elected: F. M. Mickey, I. E. McKinney and John Cuddy, commissioners; I. M. Hart, clerk; James P. Gray, sheriff; J. D. Wade, treasurer; S. R. Denney, assessor; T. C. Underwood, probate judge; H. A. Parker, surveyor; T. M. Jetfreys, superintendent of schools; J. W. Kelley, coroner. At this election the highest number of votes cast for any candidate was 226. The only exciting feature of the campaign was the contest over the location of the county seat, two places being voted for—Weiser Bridge (now Weiser) and Upper Valley (now Salubria)—Weiser Bridge winning by a vote of 117 to 106. The county had no courthouse until 1882, when a cheap frame structure was erected. Prior to that time the various county officials kept their offices at their homes in different parts of the county, so that the transaction of public business was attended by many difficulties. The present courthouse and jail were erected in 1890.

"John Cuddy, one of the first board of county commissioners, was a native of County Tipperary, Ireland, came to America in 1840. when he was but six years of age and in 1865 became a resident of Idaho. For about four years he was engaged in the mercantile business in Boise and in 1869, with a partner named Tyne, erected the first fiour mill in what is now Washington County. Cuddy Mountain bears his name.

"Edward S. Jewell, who settled in the Salubria Valley in 1869, entered 160 acres of land, upon which the Washington County fair grounds were afterward located. He was twice elected county commissioner and was a delegate to the constitutional convention in 1889.

"Andrew and Henry H. Abernathy, brothers and natives of Indiana, came to the Weiser Valley in 1864 and engaged in freighting and keeping a hotel at Farwell Bend on the Snake River. Henry afterward removed to the Salubria Valley and became one of the prosperous farmers of the county.

"Other pioneers were James Colson, J. N. Harris, William B. Allison, T. C. Galloway, Woodson Jeffreys and John Moore. James Colson and William B. Allison settled in the Salubria Valley in 1868, and Woodson Jeffreys was one of the first settlers where the City of Weiser now stands. His son Thomas M. Jeffreys, was Washington County 's first superintendent of public schools.

"Two lines of railroad furnish transportation to the people of the county. The Oregon Short Line passes through the southwestern part along the Snake River, and the Pacific & Idaho Northern follows the course of the Weiser River. The principal towns along these railroads are Cambridge, Eatons, Midvale, Vulcan and Weiser. Salubria, a few miles east of the Weiser River, is a town of considerable importance to the farmers of the Little Weiser Valley.

"Both irrigated and dry farming are carried on successfully and fruit growing is becoming every year of more importance. From the earliest settlement stock raising has been an important industry. The Weiser Forest Reserve, the headquarters of which are at Weiser, covers 162,900 acres within the county limits and affords excellent opportunities for grazing. In 1917 Washington County reported 14,462 cattle, 7,981 horses and 5,457 sheep. The total assessed valuation of property in 1918 was $8,726,600. Mining for copper has been carried on in a limited way at various points in the 'Seven Devil' Mountains. In 1910 the population was 11,101, but the erection of Adams County the next year after the census was taken, and of Gem County in 1915 reduced the number of inhabitants in Washington. In 1918 the population was estimated at 8,000."

Source: The History of Idaho, The Gem of the Mountain, by James H. Hawley, Volume I, The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1920:
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