Gem County, IDGenWeb Project

Gem Co. map
Sharon McConnel,
Gem County Coordinator

Ballantine Wool Wagons

Ballantine Wool Wagons

"Ballantine wool from Ola. Feed store owned by Frank Noland. Frank and James Noland Sr, Sweet, standing on porch." -- Photo courtesy of Gem County Historical Society and Museum, 501 E. First Street, Emmett.

Sweet History

Idaho Almanac, 1977: The sheep boom took place in the 1880's as the railroads were constructed. The census of 1890 showed 357,712 sheep. . . The sheep industry reached its greatest growth in 1910 when the census counted 2,418,000 head in Idaho. In the 1950's the sheep industry began a downhill slide . . Virtually all sheep in Idaho utilize the forage on the federal lands.

Andy Little, a Scotsman who immigrated in 1884 with his sheep dogs, built a sheep empire with over 100,000 sheep, reputed to have been the largest in the United States, headquartered in Emmett. For further reading, see Shaddock's "Andy Little, Idaho Sheep King."

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