Idaho Facts and History

Abbreviated as ID on, Idaho is one of the 48 states of the North American Confederation (sq. Km. 217.261), organized as a territory in 1863, annexed to the Union in 1890. It borders in north with British Columbia, in west with the states of Washington and Oregon, to south with those of Nevada and Utah, to east with those of Wyoming and Montana. The borders are partially natural: towards the northeast  they run along the axis of high chains, towards the West they are for a stretch marked by the course of the Snake River. The territory of the state is essentially mountainous, especially in the northeast section, where various chains rise with important crossings for transcontinental communications, which enclose the basins of the numerous tributaries of the Snake River, a tributary of Columbia, which drains the waters of the central and southern sections of the state. The southern part of the state is formed by the vast Snake Lava Plateau, 80 to 120km wide, 510km long, rising over 600m. to the west at about 1500 m. towards the east, composed largely of volcanic material; it has a semi-arid climate, with rainfall of less than 350 mm. (Boise, 330 mm.; Blackfoot, 200 mm.) And strong temperature excursions (there are absolute minimums of over -30 ° and maximums of over 40 °); it is practiced on a large scale dry farming. In much better conditions is central and northern Idaho: temperatures are progressively decreasing from south to north, while precipitation increases (Moscow, 600 mm; Murray, over 1000 mm.). This more temperate and wetter climate greatly favors the spread of the forest and is directly related to the conditions of the relief: the eastern mountain ranges protect the territory from the cold Canadian continental climate.

Idaho has a low population: 2 residents per sq. km. The total population has risen from 15,000 residents in 1870 to 162,000 in 1900, to 445,000 in 1930; Whites represent 98.3% (Whites born abroad 30,454, that is about 7% of the total population: they are mainly Swedes, Germans, English and Canadians; Italians are 1153). The state is divided into 44 counties and also includes a portion of Yellowstone National Park (122 sq km). The rural population prevails; the urban one resulted in the proportion of 29.1% in 1930. The urban centers are modest: only Pocatello (16,471 residents) and Boise (21,544 residents), the capital, exceed 10,000 residents Idaho Falls, t. with 9429 residents, Lewiston, with 9403, Twin Falls, with 8787, Coeur d’Alene, with 8297.

The main agricultural productions are given by cereals and fodder. Fruit production is also noteworthy, especially that of apples. Given the climatic conditions, irrigation is of great importance. The large extension of the pastures allows a considerable breeding of livestock. For the year 1930 we have the following figures: 206,000 horses, 7000 mules, 622,000 cattle, 2,260,000 sheep; for the latter the state occupies one of the eminent places in the North American Confederation: the production of wool is remarkable, which in the period 1925-1930 was about 85,000 quintals.

The forests are very extensive, covering about ⅓ of the surface of the state; given the altitude conditions, conifers are very common.

Idaho has great mining importance: it produces lead, zinc, copper, silver, gold. The most important district is that of Coeur d’Alene, whose very rich deposits of lead and silver were discovered in 1884; gold is sourced primarily in Butte County.

Industries are still modest; that of wood occupies the first place with 9386 employees in 1927; mechanical industries follow with 1273 workers. Given the morphological conditions, an industry that will have a large development is the hydroelectric one.

The railways show a constant increase; in 1880 they reached only 320 km.; in 1929 they exceeded 4,700 km. The state is crossed in the sense of parallels by transcontinental lines. State roads measured approximately 6,800 km in 1929.

Moscow is home to the University of Idaho, opened on October 3, 1892, in Caldwell, the College of Idaho, opened on October 7, 1891, controlled by the Synod of the Presbyterian Church of Idaho.


The region was first visited by the Whites probably in 1805-1806, when the expedition led by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark went to the “Oregon Country”. Possession of the region was disputed between Spain, Russia, England and the United States; but Spain gave up its claims in 1819 and five years later Russia did the same. It was then jointly occupied by Great Britain and the United States, until 1846; but in reality Idaho was dominated by British traders, although the Americans had established trading posts along the Snake River and organized a few missions among the Coeur d’Alene Indians. The first remaining colony was only established in 1860, when a group of Mormons set out to build farms in the southwest  of the region. The discovery of rich gold deposits along Oro Fino Creek caused a sudden rush of migration into the Idaho region, and mining camps there quickly developed into thriving cities. In 1863 the Idaho Territory was formed, which included a much larger area than the present state and which was incorporated into the Union in 1890.

The prestige of the state of Idaho in national political affairs was greatly enhanced by the action carried out by William Borah, one of the representatives of this state (since 1907) in the United States Senate.

Idaho Facts and History


According to, Boise is a city of the USA (202,832 inhabitants in 2007), and capital of the State of Idaho, located on the river of the same name. Founded in 1863. Agricultural, livestock and mining market and industrial center.

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