Eagle, Idaho is one of the fastest-growing and desirable communities in the Treasure Valley. Its reputation for being a quiet suburb filled with beautiful, new houses while also having a small-town feeling downtown adds to the charm.
When gold was discovered in the Boise Basin and the mountains north of the valley, people flocked to the area to make their fortunes. While many sought gold in the form of metal, one intrepid man had other ideas. Truman C. Catlin, an Illinois native, saw that the prospectors and townsfolk needed food. He invested in 160 acres of land along the Boise River in late 1863. The site was named Eagle Island after the large number of bald eagles on the river near the property. The following year, Catlin and his neighbor dug irrigation trenches to get water to the farmland. The result was enough water to irrigate 700 acres and kicked off a 40-year effort by valley residents to dig canals and ditches to irrigate most of the valley. Many of these are still around to this day.
In 1877, a man named Thomas Hugh Aikens bought land on the north and south sides of the Boise River. The property on the north side made him the owner of a large portion of Valley Road between Eagle and Boise (now State Street/Highway 44). Valley Road was, at the time, the main road between Boise and the towns to the west. Aikens then began a long campaign to build a bridge over the Boise River to connect his properties on the north and south sides of the river. The main opponent to the bridge was the town of Star, which didn't see the need for a tiny town like Eagle to build a bridge over the river. The county commission decided to let the voters decide Aikens devised a genius strategy to get people to vote for the bridge. He rented a luxury carriage to transport people to the polls and offered voters a free picnic. The voters overwhelmingly voted in favor of the bridge. The Eagle Island Bridge construction led to the building of a new school, a grocery store, and an Odd Fellows Hall. In 1904, Aikens and retired teamster John Carpenter decided to plat and sell fifteen acres to the town for development. Shortly after, the township was officially named Eagle.