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Established in 1911, Wilder attained its current name as a favor to a reputable magazine editor. Learning about the town, Marshall P. Wilder agreed to write a favorable article describing the town in his popular women’s magazine, The Delineator. In return, the editor requested that his last name be adopted as the settlement’s official title. Prior to this event, the town was nearly called “Golden Gate” by wealthy western investors. These investors planned to develop a line of the San Francisco, Idaho, and Montana Railroad running from Butte, Montana to San Francisco. In the process, the financiers had great plans to turn the small Idaho settlement into a miniature San Francisco. The plan was dropped, however, upon learning of the community’s agreement with Marshall P. Wilder.

Wilder has supported a prosperous agricultural lifestyle since its inception. The area is home to several potato, sugar beet, corn, wheat, barley, and onion farming operations. The town is also nationally recognized for its hops production. Grown in only four states, hops requires extensive labor and production costs. The Wilder area, which is responsible for most of Idaho’s hops production, has mastered production of this crop. Area farmers are frequently recognized as having America’s highest average yield.

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