The History of Star, Idaho
The community of Star was one of the first settlements in the Boise Valley. Most of the farmland that you see from the rim communities of Star Pointe and Inspirado towards the Boise River was homesteaded around 1863. The farmers catered to travelers on their way to and from the mines of the Boise Basin.
One of the later branches of the Oregon Trail crossed the Boise River and traveled through what is now the City of Star. Many of the travelers in the spring would traverse up the ridge onto what is now Inspirado and Star Pointe to avoid getting stuck in mud bogs.
The first schoolhouse in Star was built in 1870. One of the men that helped build the schoolhouse sawed out a star and nailed it to the front door. The star became an important landmark for miles around and was a guide for travelers and miners. They would come to the schoolhouse with the star on the door to lodging for the night. In time, the town became known as Star.
The first post office was established in 1880. Shepp Gray was the first postmaster and owner of the general store. The first hotel was later opened in 1888.
In 1905, Star incorporated and established city limits reaching 4 miles in all directions. In 1907 the first electric railroad was built and went from Boise to now the city of Eagle through Star, Middleton, and Nampa. It then circled back through Meridian to Boise.
In 1929, the state of Idaho paved the highway east and west of Star to its city limits. Star was expected to pay for the portion within its city limits. The local farmers didn’t want to have taxes raised to pay for it, so the city charter was turned back and the highway became the property of the state and the city of Star was unincorporated.
On December 12, 1997, the Ada County Commission approved an order proclamation and resolution establishing the geographic boundaries of Ada county’s newest city. A mayor and six-member city council were also appointed, making Star the first city to be incorporated in Ada County since 1971. The population remained around 500 (about the same as it was early in the century). In recent years with the growth of Boise, Eagle, and the surrounding areas, Star has become one of the fastest-growing cities in Idaho with a current population of just under 13,000 residents.