Idaho became a territory 150 years ago
Sesquicentennial celebration Video by IdahoOnYourSide.comvideo
Idaho officially became a territory 150 years ago on March 4, 1863. The state kicked off the birthday celebration at the statehouse Monday. A territorial sesquicentennial celebration to be exact. Abraham Lincoln was in office 150 years ago and with his signature Idaho became the country's newest territory. The statehouse became a celebration zone Monday as school kids, dignitaries and Idahoans observed the states territorial sesquicentennial.
“Not only to look back, but to look forward”, said Janet Gallimore, Executive Director of the Idaho Historical Society.
Tammy Eliasen wore her very best dress for the occasion, a vintage 1863 day dress.
"This is what a lady would be wearing out to visit during the day. It is absolutely true to the period, the way they did the fabric back then, they would have rolled it for each color, so, each additional color would add expense to the fabric,” said Tammy Eliasen.
There are more layers to this dress than you can imagine.
"Nine layers of undergarments are underneath here, everything from a petticoat to a hoop skirt and then just a skirt, a bodice, a corset, gloves, and a bonnet,” said Eliasen.
Others in the crowd also came in period dress including Lincoln himself. The man who made Idaho an expansive territory. Experts will tell you we learn from history.
“Because the people who were here 150 years ago, were part of the territorial era and were making decisions that still impact us today. Our highways, our post office, our school system, much of Idaho's infrastructure came from that era,” said Gallimore.
The lessons we learn not only teach us about the past, but also help navigate our future.
"I think we have an obligation to leave a legacy for the people that come after us and to pay it forward,” said Gallimore.
Celebrations will continue for a year; and on Tuesday, March 5th the Idaho Historical Museum opens its exhibit of “Essential Idaho”; 150 stories that make Idaho the Gem State.