|Like the famous Troy described in both history and literature texts, this small Idaho town has an interesting past filled with legend. In the mid 1880s, the area was known as Huffs Gulch, and according to early homesteaders, Huffs Gulch didn’t have much to offer. That all changed in 1890 when millionaire banker John Vollmer arrived. Using his influence as a state agent of the Northern Pacific Railroad, Vollmer persuaded the railroad to build a line running through his town. The same year, the prominent businessman changed the now growing settlement’s name to “Vollmer” in honor of his accomplishments. While Vollmer was popular in the town’s early days, he quickly lost favor with residents. During the 1893 area depression, Vollmer foreclosed on several notes, so an election was held to change the town’s name. Among the name choices were Vollmer, Romeo, and Troy. Legend has it that a young Greek railroad laborer stood outside the poll site with a large barrel of liquor. For anyone who voted to change the town’s name to Troy, the young Greek would allow that person to have as much free liquor as he/she wanted. His bribing technique worked, and at the end of the election, Troy came in with 29 votes, Vollmer with 9, and Romeo with 0.
With a new name, Troy opened its post office doors in 1898. In 1905, the First Bank of Troy began business, and this prosperous bank later became the birthplace of the national Key Bank. As more people moved to the area, Troy became an important regional supply center, and it is even rumored that Cape Canaveral’s launch pad is partially constructed of bricks made in Troy.