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First named To-po-nis, a Shoshone Indian word translated into English as “black cherries” or “trading post,” Gooding was established in 1883 as a railroad stop for the Union Pacific Railroad. The name was changed in 1896 after Frank Gooding, a prominent landowner, sheep farmer, and founder of the town. Frank later served as town mayor and Idaho governor, and acted as a U.S. Senator from 1921 until his death in 1928.

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