DescriptionSoon after gold was discovered in the Boise Basin in 1862, Idaho City became one of the largest cities in the Pacific Northwest. By 1865 it was home to some 7,000 gold seekers; nearly one quarter were Chinese. At its peak the basin was home to 15,000-20,000 miners. The mining district around Idaho City, including nearby Placerville and Centerville, was one of the largest sources of gold ever discovered.
More than 20 pioneer buildings from the 1860s and miles of dredge workings are still visible. The First Masonic Hall, built in 1865 to house Idaho's first Grand Lodge of Masons, displays Masonic items. Idaho City was the site of the territory's first prison, a portion of which has been restored. Guided town walking tours are available from the Boise Basin Museum by appointment; there is a $30 minimum per group.
Boise National Forest surrounds the town. Idaho City lies on scenic SR 21, also known as the Ponderosa Pine Scenic Route. SR 21 heads northeast through Sawtooth National Forest and ends in Stanley.
Visitor InfoIdaho City Chamber of Commerce 100 Main St. IDAHO CITY, ID 83631. Phone:(208)392-4159
Things to SeeBoise Basin Museum