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Acequia Idaho-Flag Station And Homesteading History

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 0 0

Acequia Idaho is a very small town. The 2,000 census listed Acequias population at 144. Acequia is near Rupert Idaho.The cost of living is very cheap compared to the national average.

Acequia began as a flag station. A flag station is a train station where trains do not stop unless signaled too. The area was originally called Sherrer but when the town was officially chartered in 1907 it was named Acequia. Acequia means "water course" in Spanish.

The area of Acequia began to grow after the completion of the Minidoka Dam. The dam allowed the canals to be filled with water to irrigate the surrounding farmland.

Acequia Idaho is unique in that homesteading was available twice. A family could claim land and farm it for 3 years and they would then own the land. The first time homesteading was available was after the completion of the Minidoka Dam in 1904 which allowed about 55,000 acres of farmland to be irrigated.

The second time homesteading was offered was in during the North Side Pumping Project. Homestead drawings were held in 1953 and additional acres were opened to homesteading.

Although the land was "free" for the homesteaders it was far from being easy. They had to farm the land, bugs, crop diseases, very hot summer temperatures and many more hardships.

In 1979 more than 110 million gallons of partially treated sewer spilled out of new sewage treatment lagoon. The sewage flowed almost 3 miles. The town of Acequia was in a panic as they thought the sewage may reach their town but eventually the ground soaked up all of the sewage befor eit reached the town of Acequia. It was between 1/4 of a mile and 3/4 of a mile away from town. The residents were advised to boil their drinking water for the next few days and then all was wll.

The town Of Acequia is based on farming and will continue to exist as a rural community. Although it will probably never grow into a major Metropolitan area, residents of Acequia would not want it any other way.



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