Shoshone-Bannock Indian Festival
Shoshone and Bannock Indian tribes inhabited southeastern Idaho for hundreds of years before the epic trek by Lewis and Clark across Idaho in 1805. Their reports of the many riches of the region attracted fur trappers and traders to southeastern Idaho.
Hudson's Bay Company established one of the first permanent settlements at Fort Hall in 1834, which is only a few miles northeast of Pocatello. When over-trapping and a shift in fashion to silk hats put an end to the fur trade, Fort Hall became a supply point for immigrants traveling the Oregon trail.
Fort Hall Replica
Although thousands of immigrants passed through Idaho, it was not until the discovery of gold in 1860 that attracted settlers in large numbers to Idaho. The gold rush brought a need for goods and services to many towns, and the Portneuf Valley, home of Pocatello, was the corridor initially used by stage and freight lines. The coming of the railroad provided further development of Idaho's mineral resources and "Pocatello junction" became an important transportation crossroads as the Union Pacific Railroad expanded its service.
Later, after the gold rush, settlers who remained turned to agriculture. With the help of irrigation from the nearby Snake River, the region became a large supplier of potatoes, grain and other crops.
Today, Pocatello and Chubbuck (an adjacent community) are home to about 70,000 people. The area offers every modern convenience, including shopping malls, theaters, museums, parks, golf courses, a small zoo and a ski resort not more than 1/2 hour away.