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Hidden History: The streets of Twin Falls
HIDDEN HISTORY

Hidden History: The streets of Twin Falls

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Original street map of Twin Falls

Early residents were confused by the initial street names in town, so city officials renamed the streets and avenues. The Rogerson Hotel, built at Ninth and Main streets in Twin Falls, ended up at Second Street and Main Avenue East after the streets were renamed.

Today’s two main roads in downtown Twin Falls are Main Avenue and Shoshone Street, but at one time the two were called Main Street and Shoshone Avenue.

Oddly, the avenues ran parallel to Main Street and the streets paralleled Shoshone Avenue.

Hill and Taylor Real Estate ran an advertisement in the May 12, 1905, edition of the Twin Falls News — the 29th edition of the weekly newspaper — promoting the lots available for purchase in the new town.

The ad, a map of the 32 streets and more than 32 blocks in the original town section, shows the avenues, starting at First Avenue near North Five Points, ran to 17th Avenue near the train depot on Shoshone Avenue, and the streets, starting at First Street near West Five Points, ran to 15th Street near East Five Points at Kimberly Road.

The odd configuration confused a lot of folks and new names for the roads were proposed in 1908 for inside the new townsite. Lincoln and Bickel elementary schools, which first fronted 10th Avenue, later faced Second avenues north and east, as they do now.

In 2003, another group of confused folks changed the names of numbered streets but not the avenues.

Mychel Matthews is the Big Story Chief for the Times-News. The Hidden History feature runs every Thursday in the Times-News and at Magicvalley.com. If you have a question about something that may have historical significance, email Matthews at mmatthews@magicvalley.com.

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