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Boise, Idaho

HistoryEdit See also: Timeline of Boise, Idaho EtymologyEdit Floating the Boise River Accounts differ about the origin of the name. One account credits Capt. B.L.E. Bonneville of the U.S. Army as its source. After trekking for weeks through dry and rough terrain, his exploration party reached an overlook with a view of the Boise River Valley. The place where they stood is called Bonneville Point, located on the Oregon Trail east of the city. According to the story, a French-speaking guide, overwhelmed by the sight of the verdant river, yelled "Les bois! Les bois!" ("The wood! The wood!")—and the name stuck. The name may instead derive from earlier mountain men, who named the river that flows through it. In the 1820s, French Canadian fur trappers set trap lines in the vicinity. Set in a high-desert area, the tree-lined valley of the Boise River became a distinct landmark, an oasis dominated by cottonwood trees. They called this "La rivière boisée", which means "the wooded river."[6] Main Street in 1911 The area was called Boise long before the establishment of Fort Boise by the federal government. The original Fort Boise was 40 miles (64 km) west, near Parma, down the Boise River near its confluence with the Snake River at the Oregonborder. This private sector defense was erected by the Hudson's Bay Company in the 1830s. It was abandoned in the 1850s, but massacres along the Oregon Trail prompted the U.S. Army to re-establish a fort in the area in 1863 during the U.S. Civil War. The new location was selected because it was near the intersection of the Oregon Trail with a major road connecting the Boise Basin (Idaho City) and theOwyhee (Silver City) mining areas, both of which were booming. During the mid-1860s, Idaho City was the largest city in the Northwest, and as a staging area, Fort Boise grew rapidly; Boise was incorporatedas a city in 1863. The first capital of the Idaho Territory was Lewiston in north central Idaho, which in 1863 was the largest community, exceeding the populations of Olympia and Seattle, Washington Territory and Portland, Oregon combined. The original territory was larger than Texas. But following the creation of Montana Territory, Boise was made the territorial capital of a much reduced Idaho in a controversial decision which overturned a district court ruling by a one-vote majority in the territorial supreme court along geographic lines in 1866. Designed by Alfred B. Mullett, the U.S. Assay Office at 210 Main Street was built in 1871 and today is aNational Historic Landmark. PronunciationEdit Natives and longtime residents use the pronunciation /ˈbɔɪsiː/ (BOY-see),[7] as given on the city's website.[4] The pronunciation is sometimes used as a shibboleth, as outsiders (and newcomers) tend to pronounce the city's name as /ˈbɔɪziː/ (BOY-zee).[8]

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