Bringing the Economy Home


Mining: Idaho's First Industry


Jeff Perkell / Getty Images

Underground silver mine

This page is no longer being updated. For ongoing coverage of this topic, go to Boise State Public Radio’s website.

The creation and growth of most western states was a direct result of the mining industries that developed in the late 1800s. In Idaho, it was silver and gold.

Mining and other traditional natural resources have taken a big hit in the last decade, but industry representative and some economists believe they’re still a major player in Idaho’s 21st Century economy.

The Idaho Division of Financial Management said the state’s mining industry grew four percent in 2010 and it is projecting “consistent gains” through 2014.  Silver is just one of Idaho’s mining main-stays.  The state also produces molybdenum, phosphorus, lead, zinc and copper.

Latest Posts

Idaho Poised to Lead the Nation in Medical Job Growth

A recent study finds Idaho will lead the nation in the creation of new jobs in the health sciences sector.  Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce published this study earlier this month.  The report forecasts job demand.  More specifically, it looks at the kinds of jobs that will be available for high school […]

Mapping Idaho’s Unemployment Rate, County-by-County

Idaho’s unemployment rate ticked down two-tenths of a percent in September, slipping below the national rate for the first time in nearly a year.  The state’s seasonally adjusted rate is at 9.0 percent, nationally it’s at 9.1 percent. Idaho Department of Labor spokesman Bob Fick says many sectors are performing better, or about the same, […]

About StateImpact

StateImpact seeks to inform and engage local communities with broadcast and online news focused on how state government decisions affect your lives.
Learn More »