|Serving as county seat for Twin Falls County, this community was founded in 1903 by I. B. Perrine. An Indiana born-Idaho settler, Perrine successfully developed an irrigated orchard near the Snake River Canyon just west of what would become Twin Falls. Drawing upon this idea, Perrine joined forces with several prominent businessmen from around the country to promote construction of a dam over the Snake River east of town. Doing so would provide reliable irrigation to the desert area and make it a livable place where an agricultural lifestyle would thrive. After enlisting more supporters and forming the Twin Falls Investment Company, Perrine’s idea was endorsed and construction on the Milner Dam began in 1903. In 1904, the company platted the new town site of Twin Falls, and with the help of the 1894 Carey Act, 160-acre homesteads were offered at just $25 an acre. Settlers (mostly Midwestern businessmen and farmers) flocked to the area, and since the town grew so quickly, it was nicknamed “Magic City.” In 1905, the town that was once a desert was officially incorporated as part of the state.
Named after the cataract flowing over the gorge of the Snake River, the city of Twin Falls attracts numerous tourists interested in the area waterfalls. The rushing rapids of Twin Falls were the site of Evel Knievel’s failed attempt to cross the 1,500-foot gap in 1974. Local legend also relates several tales of both triumphant and unsuccessful individuals attempting to ride the 212-foot plunge of the nearby renowned Shoshone Falls.
Today, visitors will find that the town’s founding agricultural legacy continues. Sugar beets, alfalfa, and potatoes are all important area crops, and cattle ranchers and dairy farmers have found the area ideal for business. The city’s industry and more urban amenities combine with the farming lifestyle to offer a rich cultural heritage.