Oakley
Pop. 668

Mormons from Tooele, Utah, settled here between 1878 and 1880 and proceeded to raise alfalfa, wheat, and barley. The town, originally called Goose Creek Crossing, was renamed after local stage station operator, Thomas Oakley. With the construction of the Oakley Dam in 1911 came an interest from the Idaho Southern Short Line Railroad. Soon, the railroad was contracted to haul cement and timbers to aid in the construction process. Upon the dam’s completion, farmers and ranchers turned the railroad into an important shipping and receiving line for livestock.

Although the town arose with vigor upon great hopes, the population began to diminish starting in 1918. Irrigated land was scarce, and a 1923 fire desecrated the majority of the town’s business district. 1927 brought additional hardship to the area when the long-operating Vipoint Silver Mine closed. Subsequently, more residents fled the area.

Today, the small community’s economy is dependent upon the several rock quarries operating nearby. The Idaho quartzite mined outside Oakley is shipped all over the nation and world. Visitors should also note that the entire town is listed on the National Register of Historic Places!

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