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Lewis and Clark State College professor Cindy West (Documentary Photo #ggggg):

Lots of underhanded dealing took place to move the capitol.   Railroads didn't want to push this far north.  Politicians were simply bribed with promises of stock and real estate along future routes. 

A combination of politics and commerce prompted the move to Boise. Southern Idaho had become the population center of the state due to the presence of the Oregon Trail and the possibility of a railroad spur. Mining and timber dominated the north, but most mercantile concerns didn’t want to locate themselves there due to the ruggedness of central Idaho.

Also, the picturesque quality of Boise, with Table Rock and the greenery of the Boise River, added to the attraction. There was, however, a significant minority who didn’t want the capitol to move. Most were merchants who believed the commercial center of Idaho would remain in the north and that the existence of a seaport would offset any advantage from east-west trade routes in the south.   They were afraid that the removal of the state seat would cripple them. Almost all lost their businesses over the next five years.

Evidence at the site: none.


Idaho Historical Society Chairman Martain Stinnett (Documentary Photo #ff342):

The relocation of the capitol was mostly pragmatic in nature.