And here we have Idaho
Winning her way to fame.
Silver and gold in the sunlight blaze,
and romance lies in her name.
Singing, we're singing of you,
Ah, proudly too,
All our lives thru, we'll go
Singing, singing of you,
Singing of Idaho.
Idaho State Song
Idaho was first suggested as a name in 1860 for the region that became the Colorado Territory, but was rejected because it was not a real Native American word; a United States congressman had made it up. However, in 1863, the name was chosen for the territory that became Idaho because the name became popular in the region. Idaho is nicknamed the "Gem State" because it is known as the "Gem of the Mountains." Boise, the state's capital and largest city, is nicknamed the "City of Trees." The abbreviation for Idaho is ID.
Idaho is a Rocky Mountain state bordered by Canada to the north, Montana and Wyoming to the east, Nevada and Utah to the south, and Washington and Oregon to the west. The state's strange shape looks like a logger's boot. Idaho's irregular borders resulted because the state was formed from the area that remained after nearby states had established their territories. Although it is the 14th largest state overall, its the smallest Rocky Mountain state.
The Rocky Mountains cover most of Idaho's land. In fact, the state is known as the "Gem of the Mountains." The large, treeless Snake River Plain runs across the southern region of the state. Most of the state's largest cities are on the Snake River plain. The plain is also responsible for most of Idaho's farm production, but parts of the region are some of the most barren areas in the Pacific Northwest. Idaho's diverse landscape includes fast rivers, evergreen forests, steep waterfalls, canyons, plateaus, and lakes.
Idaho has become a chief producer of silver, zinc, lead, and lumber because its mountains and forests have many natural resources; Idaho produces more silver than any other state. The state also has fertile soil. Irrigation has made Idaho's southern desert region into valuable farmland. In fact, agriculture is the state's major source of income. Idaho is the leading producer of potatoes in the country; the state's potatoes are world famous. Hay, sugar beets, and wheat are also grown in the state. Beef and dairy cattle are a chief source of the state's farm income.
Idaho also has an important manufacturing industry. Food processing, the production of wood products, and high-technology industries are all parts of the state's manufacturing industry.
Tourism and recreation are important sources of income for Idaho. Explore the remains of extinct volcanoes at Craters of the Moon National Monument. Ski at Sun Valley in the Sawtooth Mountains. Take a boat ride through Hells Canyon. While you're there, look down 7,900 feet from the canyon's rim to see the deepest canyon in North America. Visit Shoshone Falls and watch water cascade down 212 feet - that's a greater drop than Niagara Falls.