Idaho State Guide
In 1860, the U.S. Congress was taking steps to establish a new territory in the Rocky Mountains. As the members of Congress discussed possible names for the territory, an eccentric and enthusiastic lobbyist named George M. Willing offered up the name "Idaho," claiming it was a Shoshone word meaning "gem of the mountains." After a bit of scrutiny, it was revealed that Willing had simply made up the word. His suggestion was rejected and the territory in question was named Colorado. However, the word "Idaho" had already taken root in the public conscious. A steamship launched in 1860 on the Columbia River was named Idaho. This ship lent its name to the county that was formed the following year in the Washington Territory. Idaho County became the Idaho Territory and, eventually, the state of Idaho. To this day, many people still labor under the misconception that "Idaho" is derived from the Native American tongue. This legend has come to be known as the "Idahoax."
Map of Idaho
Nickname: Gem State
Time Zone: PST/MST
State Motto: Esto perpetua ("Let it be perpetual")