Historic Wallace Idaho

The historic mining town of Wallace (population 784) is nestled beneath Interstate 90, halfway between two ski and recreation areas in northern Idaho's beautiful Silver Valley. The town has long been famous as the "Silver Capital of the World" with 1.2 billion ounces of silver produced in Shoshone county since 1884. Silver mining is still a big part of our economy, but today it is carried out in total harmony with a pristine mountain environment that attracts outdoor recreation enthusiasts from around the world. Some folks come for the deep powder at the two ski areas, or the variety of bicycle trails, or the solitude of alpine lakes, but all agree, this is the place to play. And for us lucky ones, this is a great place to live.

Wallace is also known for the fact that every downtown building is on the National Register of Historic Places... which is why the government finally had to go over us instead of through us in order to complete the Interstate Highway system in 1991. Now the Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes paved bike path is directly under Interstate 90 as it passes above Wallace, following the famous South Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River through the narrow Silver Valley: the only place on earth where more than a billion ounces of silver were mined in 100 years.

Wallace continues to make news every year; check out our recent accomplishments!

I-90, Montana Exit 0
I-90, Montana Exit 0, camera facing NW toward the Silver Valley facing NW toward the Silver Valley
current weather

Wallace Blues Festival 2014
Festival RECAP

96 interactive photos
+ Festival Committee photo

Two weeks before hunting season, moose always respect the traffic laws in Wallace ...
      photo by Madison Hogamier


click to open 2013/2014 Silver Valley Snow Log and Commentary Check out the deep powder at Lookout Pass.
 
Domain Favorites
Recreational and
Informative Videos
2014 Festivals and Events
last updated Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Wallace Businesses
last updated Wednesday, September 03, 2014
 
powered by Amazon Please check out my Amazon Associate Store, where you can access Amazon books and outdoor recreation gear tailored to Wallace and the Silver Valley, as well as everything else at Amazon using search and other specialty item widgets. ALSO at Greg Marsh's Wallace Store you will find special local items and opportunities available only in Wallace or the Silver Valley.
 
Wallace Blues Festival Other Festivals Relocation Information
Mountain Recreation GoogleEarth Lakes GoogleEarth Ski Areas
Bicycle Adventures Mining Heritage Ski Season Commentaries
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  • 234 North American ski areas
  • 365 mountain recreation enthusiasts
  • 393 bicycle resources & hardware
  • 134 other regional attractions

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Sam Grove's photos from and toward Mt. Stevens
With Silver Mountain and Lookout Pass Ski and Recreation Areas a dozen Interstate miles away in each direction, the area around Wallace is a full-season mountain recreation paradise. Winter embraces alpine and cross-country skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling and snowshoeing. Fishing, mountain and road biking, mountain climbing, hiking and backpacking, river rafting and kayaking, golf, and motorized exploration on two or four wheels occupy outdoor recreation enthusiasts from spring to fall. Bow, rifle and muzzleloader hunting for deer and elk is naturally popular each fall. Moose tags are awarded by lottery to Idaho residents who then have one chance per lifetime to harvest the huge game. Black bears may be hunted during the fall and spring, while mountain lions are fair game September through March. New in 2012, two zipline tours high above Wallace combine adventure with spectacular scenery. Open May thru September, these are the only ziplines on I-90.

 
Google Earth looks at the mountains and lakes around Wallace
12 flight paths above
  • Lookout Pass and Silver Mountain ski areas
    The mountain peaks and eight alpine lakes that surround Lookout Pass are especially inspirational.
  • 185 mile loop of diverse bicycle trails
    • the 72 mile paved Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes from Plummer to Mullan
    • the multi-use Northern Pacific Trail between Mullan and Taft
    • the Old Milwaukee Road from Taft to Plummer, (mostly dirt road, but includes the non-motorized Route of the Hiawatha)
  • scenic and historic roads from Wallace
Take the tour of Burke Canyon and see what the famous silver mining camps of Frisco and Black Bear look like today...and what they looked like a hundred years ago.

Plus, All 21 alpine lakes within a 23 mile radius of Wallace, presented in alphabetical order.


 
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cover photo triptic for sixth-ninth editions of our map If you have the FREE Google Earth program installed, check out these LOCAL BICYCLE TOURS. Notice that taken together, these seven trails make up a 185 mile route that promises to gain worldwide attention for the variety of scenery and topography that it encompasses. Presenting this loop to the world is a goal the Friends of the Coeur d'Alene Trails non-profit organization. A variety of other bike routes documented with maps, elevation charts, and milepost descriptions are available from the Friends website, as well as a form to request copies of their popular Recreational Trails of the Idaho Panhandle map and brochure, now in it's NINTH edition. They again printed 20,000 copies (forest green background, Route of the Hiawatha on back panel, March 2013), but as usual they are going fast!
Mountain bike
Combo bike
  • Alternate and Original Milwaukee Road
    Avery to Plummer: 47 miles from Avery to St. Maries on the multi-use Milwaukee Road Trail, and 19 miles from Saint Maries to Plummer on country roads & Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes

Road bike
  • The Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes
    72 miles on a paved bike path may be riden in three sections:
    • Plummer to Harrison: 15.3 mile ride downhill to Heyburn State Park on Lake Coeur d'Alene, across the Chatcolet Bridge and along the lake shore to Harrison, population 267
    • Harrison to Enaville: 31.8 miles of flat terrain from the Lake along the Coeur d'Alene River through the isolated Chain Lakes region to Enaville on the North Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River
    • Enaville to Mullan: 24.3 miles gradually climbing through a series of small towns that make up the famous Silver Valley, until Wallace, when the grade increases to a maximum of 3% as the trail follows the South Fork uphill to Mullan
 
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Silver Mountain Snowfall Logs and Commentaries Lookout Pass

Date 24 hr
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Date 24 hr
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Google Earth Animation of the TWO Silver Valley Ski and Recreation Areas
If you have the FREE Google Earth program installed, you may open these tours, or download them for future viewing.
click to open 1000 pixel wide Google Earth screen shot in separate window
skiing_at_Silver_Mountain.kmz
last enhanced Saturday, December 20, 2008
click to open 1000 pixel wide Google Earth screen shot in separate window
skiing_at_Lookout_Pass.kmz
last enhanced Wednesday, October 15, 2008
These tours of points of interest include flights from either Mullan up I-90 to Lookout Pass on the Montana border, or from Pinehurst east on I-90 to the Silver Mountain resort. The tours continue by looking at various runs on the mountain(s) from all sides... as they were a couple of summers ago. The Lookout Pass tour also looks down at the eight alpine lakes that face the ski area from the south.
 
 
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click to open Accommodations section of the Wallace business page

click to open Tourist Attractions section of Wallace business page

click to open the Events and Festivals page

Exit 0 image not found
I-90, Montana Exit 0, camera facing NW toward the Silver Valley
Looking northwest toward Idaho's Silver Valley from Lookout Pass, I-90, Montana Exit 0. Click image to open the Wallace Weather page featuring regional weather maps and local information. This page also shows a webcam view of I-90, Exit 62W, looking back toward Wallace, and explains why many of us feel that Wallace has the best four season climate in the world!

See the Snowfall Forecast page for current regional weather, expected snowfall and snow quality maps. This page also incorporates Ten Day Weather Forecasts for both Ski Areas.

 
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click to see more of the Pat Coast Band By all accounts, our first annual Historic Wallace Blues Festival on July 13-14, 2012, was a great success for the town, the performers and the approximately 2000 Blues Fans who attended. The most amazing thing is that our little town of 784 individuals pulled this event off in 90 days from concept initiation! A photographic reprise of the performances and a depiction of festival ambiance tell the story of a great day in Wallace's cultural history. Click on the variable band photo to go to their place in the reprise.
 
"Best Blues Event of 2012" award!

2nd annual Historic Wallace Blues Festival, July 12-14, 2013 The Second Annual Wallace Blues Festival was held on July 12-14, 2013, and was even a bigger success! Take a photographic look at the 21 performers who appeared on 6 stages in 21 hours of downtown music to see why we won the BEST BLUES EVENT OF THE YEAR again in 2013!


See what we have planned for July 2014!
 
If you have followed this website since 1998, you know that it is my personal effort to bring attention to my adopted hometown. Although I charge $100 to build a webpage for a Wallace business, I host that page free forever. Therefore the major way that I receive revenue is when readers chose to enter amazon.com through a wallace-id.com widget, either directly or via my Wallace Store
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You only need to do this once if you then bookmark a page of your choice. My tag will be part of that URL, and I will receive 4 to 6% of your purchase.
Thank you for your support,
Greg Marsh
 
Annual Accomplishments
click to buy Danny Wallace and the Centre of the Universe from Amazon.com
  • In 2002, the readers of the Boise Weekly voted Wallace to be the "Best City in Idaho."
     
  • In 2003, Wallace was ranked 24 in a list of the top 30 places in the nation where prospective second-home purchasers could find the best value for their money.
     
  • The Mayor joined with jubilant delegates to Silver Summit 2004 to proclaim Wallace as the Probalistic Center of the Universe. They were inspired by the new scientific principle adopted by the EPA: "If you can't prove something false, it must be true."
     
  • The popular British TV personality and bestselling author Danny Wallace came to town in 2005 and wrote a book called Danny Wallace and the Centre of the Universe .
     
  • Silver Summit 2006 included a renewed celebration of the Center of the Universe. click to explore THE SILVER VALLEY at Amazon.com in a separate window
     
  • The world famous Sunshine Silver Mine, in operation from 1884 to 2001, was refurbished by a Wallace mining company, and resumed shipping silver ore concentrate in 2007. Mining prosperity, four-season mountain recreation and a sense of humor were all found at the Center of the Universe.
     
  • In April 2008, the New York Times compared the current mining and tourism industries in the Silver Valley with an emphasis on Wallace culture: In High Prices, Moribund Mines Find a Silver Bullet. Closing line: "Wallace is the damnedest town," he said. "Wallace never gave up the mining dream."
        New York Times Slideshow: A Mining Town Is Revived
     
  • In October 2009, Budget Travel magazine and budgettravel.com featured Wallace, a place that mines its own history, as #5 in a list of America's Coolest Small Towns. "Every now and then, you stumble upon a town that's gotten everything right: great coffee, food with character, shop owners with purpose. These 10 spots have it all, in perfectly small doses."
     
  • click to see more of the award presentation The American Planning Association presented Bank Street with their GREAT PLACES IN AMERICA: STREETS AWARD at our 2010 Wallace Octoberfest Celebration. The APA awarded Bank Street, Wallace, the honor of being a great place that "celebrates excellence in planning." The Association presented Bank Street as #3 in a list of TEN GREAT PLACES IN AMERICA: STREETS.
    The American Planning Association is an independent, not-for-profit educational organization that provides leadership in the development of vital communities by advocating excellence in community planning, promoting education and citizen empowerment, and providing the tools and support necessary to meet the challenges of growth and change. Their reason for choosing our street begins: "During the course of its 126-year history, Bank Street has brushed up against fate, and total ruin three times. ..."      more details
     
  • In 2011, the town responded to the census news that our population had decreased from 960 to 784 individuals by hosting TWO MORE FESTIVALS, bringing the total number of major events for the year to EIGHT!
     
  • In 2012, Best 2012 Blues Festival awarded to Wallace Idaho when we heard that the famous Blues Festival in Ritzville Washington had been discontinued, we jumped into the void with only three months lead time. The resulting Wallace Blues Festival in July was such a success that we were awarded the "The Best Blues Event of 2012" by the Inland Empire Blues Society!
     
  • In 2013, we had more time to plan the 2nd annual Historic Wallace Blues Festival, July 12-14, 2013 Second Annual Wallace Blues Festival. As a result, about 3000 folks enjoyed 21 performers on 6 stages over 3 days. The photographic recap of this outstanding event, featuring 71 interactive or animated photos and complete biographical information, shows why we won the BEST BLUES FESTIVAL for a second year in a row.
 
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click to see the separate larger images with
   annotations new show     Popular visitor attractions, in addition to the many gift, jewelry and antique shops, are the Sierra Silver Mine Tour, the Northern Pacific Depot Railroad Museum, the Wallace District Mining Museum, the Oasis Bordello Museum, and the Sixth Street Melodrama.

click to enlarge Wallace Pool in a separate window The Wallace Swimming Pool was built in 1939 as a WPA project. Full restoration was carried out by the community from 1999 to 2007 at a cost of $265,000. The pool is open during the summer from 11 AM to 5 PM, Monday thru Saturday, and from noon to 5 PM on Sundays. Kids 12 and under are 50; everyone else is $1. Lap swim: 5 to 6 PM, weekdays, 50. Night swim: 6 to 8 PM, $1.

The 2008 town map is presented in separate windows as a 1008 pixel, 96 dpi JPG image, a 10.5 inch, 300 dpi JPG print, and as the original PDF file. An interactive map of downtown Wallace, as it was in the spring of 2001, may also be opened in a separate window. Wallace businesses that have opened, closed, moved across town or changed ownership since then are itemized below this archival map.

Click on the Sierra Silver Mine Trolly to go to BUSINESS PAGE; photo by Jeff Legg
The Sierra Silver Mine Trolly
is about to run over the
Center of the Universe
on its way to the
Wallace BUSINESS page,
updated September 03, 2014.

 

logo for Wallace Stairs Project
South Hill Stairs Project

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Dante's Peak movie banner During the summer of 1996, Wallace was the location of the spectacular volcano disaster movie Dante's Peak, starring Pierce Brosnan and Linda Hamilton. Fourteen years after the mayor of Dante's Peak (Linda Hamilton) accepted an award for the "Second Best Small Town In America," we accepted an award from the American Planning Association for the "(Third) Best Street in America" at the same location: the intersection of Sixth and Bank Streets. ... A spot also regarded as the Center of the Universe .      more details

However, EVERY year our village of 784 hosts an amazing range of festivals and special events that help make this the most unique and fascinating small town in America!

For three days in July 2009, the 10th Slippery Gulch celebration since 1920 was held in concert with an All-Class Reunion and the town's 125th birthday party. The graceful Girls of Slippery Gulch and the hilarious Wallace Men's Culture Club made nine, five-act stage performances in the packed Civic Center.
For the holiday season, you can order the two hour, 15 minute DVD, Wallace Idaho's Slippery Gulch, 1920 - 2000, two different T-shirts and/or the Culture Club poster! So when you think "stocking stuffer" in the months ahead, remember your special times in Wallace, the most festive small town in America.

Twenty-two interactive photos from the 1910 Fire Commemoration and 2010 Huckleberry Festival, August 19 - 21, are presented on a new "Photos and Winners" page, along with key references about the Great 1910 Fire, and the complete list of winners from the annual 5K Huckleberry fun run.

click to open Huckleberry Festival 2010 Photos and Winners page in separate window Huckleberry Festival 2010
5K Race Results
 
Huckleberry Festival 2014
5K Race Results

Photos and Winners
click to see Depot Day 2012

Depot Day 2012

 
click on the dissolving cars to open Depot Day 2011 Photos and Winners
Depot Day 2011

 
click on the '56 Corvette to open Depot Day 2010 Photos and Winners
Depot Day 2010

Dedication of the Harry Magnuson Way
Dedication of the
Harry Magnuson Way

click to see more Wallace Blues Festival ambiance
 
Historic Wallace
Blues Festival 2012
ambiance
 
Lead Creek Derby 2013
moderate time 3:41:28
Winners
click on the Gyro Ball to open Gyro Days 2012 Photos and Winners
Lead Creek Derby 2012
fast time 2:56:48
Photos and Winners
Lead Creek Derby 2011
fast time 3:03:00
Winners
Lead Creek Derby 2010
slow time 4:54:13
Photos and Winners

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visit the Shoshone Medical Center
Shoshone Medical Center, Kellogg
Visit the Wallace Junior/Senior High School
Wallace Junior/Senior High School
new item     Greg's aStore is powered by Amazon Greg's Amazon Associate Store has been updated.      North Idaho Photography      Travel Guides & Topo Maps
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The 1313 Club Historic Saloon and Grill in Wallace Idaho is FOR SALE
The 1313 Club
,
Historic Saloon and Grill
is FOR SALE! new photo tour of 1313 Club Photo Tour
click to enlarge click to Wallace Inn in Wallace Idaho
The Wallace Inn

  Stay in Style
 
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Click to see who won 100 Troy ounces of these 0.999 fine silver Centennial rounds at 2010 Lead Creek Derby After a fun day spent hiking, fishing, rafting, mountain biking, motor biking, 4-wheeling, fishing, hunting, and/or picture taking somewhere in the vast North Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River Basin, visit the ever-expanding and very historic Sprag Pole Museum in Murray Idaho, just 24 miles from Wallace over Dobson Pass. Murray (pop. ~100) was the central city of what was the last great gold mining stampede in the Lower 48 (1883-1885), and became the Cradle City of the Coeur d'Alene Mining District. This district, now centered in the Silver Valley, has been producing silver, gold, lead, zinc and copper continuously since 1884. Have a good meal and a learning experience at the same time.

Mining Companies associated with the Silver Valley
(page last updated on May 14, 2014)

Books about Hard Rock Mining
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6 Month Silver Prices - Silver Price Chart
6 Month Zinc Prices - Zinc Price Chart
From 1884 through 2013, the Silver Valley produced 1.234 BILLION OUNCES OF SILVER, as well as gold, lead, zinc, copper and antimony. In 130 years, the Coeur d'Alene Mining District has produced metals valued at $7,147,364,000. In 2013 alone, the district produced metals valued at $122,509,000. Unfortunally, national metal prices have dramatically decreased while local production costs and repairs have increased, leading once again to a depressed, but improving, Silver Valley metals market. While the table does not show gold, copper and antimony production, their value each year is reflected under Total.
Silver
Troy Ounces
Lead
Tons
Zinc
Tons
Total
Value
1884 - 2000 1,165,815,000 8,236,243 3,272,706 $5,767,435,000
2001 7,732,000 20,984 2,789 $47,589,000
2002 7,307,000 10,091 2,259 $42,351,000
2003 5,987,000 12,935 2,532 $39,707,000
2004 5,554,000 12,174 2,995 $53,452,000
2005 4,483,000 14,560 4,080 $52,014,000
2006 4,957,000 16,657 6,537 $99,136,000
2007 4,284,000 18,522 8,009 $127,164,000
2008 5,034,000 20,483 9,386 $133,354,000
2009 5,958,000 25,233 10,616 $145,565,000
2010 5,635,000 24,426 9,286 $183,424,000
2011 5,303,000 21,235 7,305 $251,523,000
2012 2,316,6 2,632 $81,240,000
2013 3,602,700 13,544 3,793 $122,509,000
googleearth_download If you have the FREE Google Earth program installed, you may visualize travel from Wallace over Dobson Pass to the North Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River and then up Placer Creek to Murray: wallace2murray.kml. The presentation includes two dozen placemarks and a "hang gliders'" tour of the route.
You may now also visualize travel from Wallace up Burke Canyon past the lost mining towns of Gem, Frisco, Black Bear, Yellow Dog, Cornwall, Mace and Burke, to finally circle above the Glidden Lakes on the Montana border: wallace2burke.kml.

one-third Troy ounce Shoshone County Courthouse .999 fine silver round One-third Troy ounce .999 fine silver rounds, commemorating the Shoshone County Courthouse built in 1905, are available.


 
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One Outstanding Weekend in May 2012
click to see Depot Day 2012

The 27th Annual Northern Pacific Railroad Depot Museum Festival and Classic Car Show on May 12, 2012, was very well attended with over 300 vehicles on display in historic downtown Wallace. See photos, video and the winners.

May 13, 2012, was the first 'Silver Sunday' at Silver Mountain

Due to fantastic spring skiing conditions, SILVER MOUNTAIN reopened for a FREE "Silver Sunday" on May 13, 2012, courtesy of Dave Smith Motors. Check out more photos and the updated 2011/12 snow log commentary for this first-ever event.

New wallace-id.com pages added in June 2012
John R. Darrington Photography
Mountain Majesty and Natural Beauty
last updated August 02, 2014
Silver Pine Trade Post
The Unexpected Cure!
last updated August 02, 2014

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Wallace History
June 06, 2003
Modern Wallace
October 10, 2008
Recreational Opportunities
January 27, 2011
Photo Album
December 29, 2003
Wallace Business
September 03, 2014
Relocation Information
April 02, 2012
Wallace Festivals
September 17, 2014
Today's Weather
(updated every hour)
January 15, 2014
Dates indicate when the content or structure of a page was modified.
This Wallace HOMEPAGE was last modified on Thursday, 18-Sep-2014 11:28:21 PDT.

 

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Greg Marsh, Ph.D.
Marsh Scientific Services

 

If you are new to this page, please leave a bookmark or share it with a friend:    
 
Wallace is at the center of a universe filled with mountain recreation and Old West history that you will want to visit more than once. Please tell me what you would like to see on this and other pages at my Historic Wallace Idaho webworks.
Greg Marsh, Ph.D.
    doing business as     Marsh Scientific Services is Greg Marsh, Ph.D.
greg4mss@hotmail.com

Please visit my other websites and websuites:
  • Northern Idaho's Silver Valley      Four Season Mountain Recreation Paradise:
    two ski resorts, two long bike trails, a dozen alpine lakes, bountiful wildlife and backcountry solitude in harmony with 128 years of mining history and legend
    silver-valley.com homepage updated December 10, 2013
  • Lookout Pass Ski Area
    Family Fun
    • closed April 6, 2014, with 117" at summit
    index page updated September 19, 2014
click to see the Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes
click to see the Route of the Hiawatha

Marsh Scientific Services is Greg Marsh ©1998-2014, Marsh Scientific Services, Greg Marsh, Ph.D.
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