kids encyclopedia robot

Shelley, Idaho facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Quick facts for kids
Shelley, Idaho
Shelley ID Skyline.JPG
Location of Shelley in Bingham County, Idaho.
Location of Shelley in Bingham County, Idaho.
Country United States
State Idaho
County Bingham
 • Total 1.81 sq mi (4.68 km2)
 • Land 1.81 sq mi (4.68 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
4,633 ft (1,412 m)
 • Total 4,409
 • Estimate 
 • Density 2,472.87/sq mi (954.83/km2)
Time zone UTC-7 (Mountain (MST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-6 (MDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 208, 986
FIPS code 16-73450
GNIS feature ID 0397154

Shelley is a city in Bingham County, Idaho. The population was 4,409 at the 2010 census. The mascot for the city's high school is a russet-burbank potato that wears a crown, robe and scepter.

Since 1927 Shelley has been home to the "Idaho Annual Spud Day", which is celebrated on the 3rd Saturday of September. It typically features a parade, live bands, a Spud Tug, a spud-picking Contest, and free baked potatoes.


Shelley was established in 1904. It was named for John F. Shelley, who moved to the area in 1892. He'd moved to the area intending to open a small store, and needed lumber and other supplies to build it. Since the site was some distance from the nearest existing community, he asked the railroad company to make a special stop to offload the supplies he'd ordered. They consented, provided he could offload the supplies in under 20 minutes. His daughter, Lottie, wrote the following in her personal history:

With the help of Chris Mickelson and others, the lumber was thrown off the train on both sides of the track. Later a spur was put in here by the railroad company.

Now they needed a name for the town. Mother suggested 'Shelco'; Father said, 'Shelton,' so they drew cuts and Mother won." Shelco was submitted to the railroad company and they replied: 'Call your town what you wish, but we have already named the spur, Shelley '. That is how the town got its name.

Charlotte Shelley

On September 4, 1902 a large fire destroyed seven buildings on State Street. Only two buildings, a general merchandise store and Nalder's furniture store, were saved. Soren Yorgensen, a local Justice of the Peace and proprieter of the first hotel in Shelley recounts the experience as follows:

...One windy afternoon in the heat of the summer, a fire started in a small grocery store operated by James Jensen. It did not take long until the wind was fanning a flame that wiped out quite a long string of frame buildings - two saloons, restaurant, Odd Fellows Hall, Post Office and Confectionery, Grocery Store, and dwelling.

Soren Yorgesen


Shelley is located at 43°22′46″N 112°7′26″W / 43.37944°N 112.12389°W / 43.37944; -112.12389 (43.379490, -112.123846).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.81 square miles (4.69 km2), all of it land.

Shelley is located on the eastern side of the Snake River, facing the Blackfoot Mountains.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1910 537
1920 1,223 127.7%
1930 1,447 18.3%
1940 1,751 21.0%
1950 1,856 6.0%
1960 2,612 40.7%
1970 2,614 0.1%
1980 3,300 26.2%
1990 3,536 7.2%
2000 3,813 7.8%
2010 4,409 15.6%
2019 (est.) 4,466 1.3%
U.S. Decennial Census

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 4,409 people, 1,445 households, and 1,123 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,435.9 inhabitants per square mile (940.5/km2). There were 1,531 housing units at an average density of 845.9 per square mile (326.6/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 89.0% White, 0.3% African American, 0.8% Native American, 0.7% Asian, 0.2% Pacific Islander, 7.0% from other races, and 2.1% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 14.0% of the population.

There were 1,445 households, of which 49.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 61.6% were married couples living together, 12.1% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.0% had a male householder with no wife present, and 22.3% were non-families. 19.6% of all households were made up of individuals, and 7.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.05 and the average family size was 3.53.

The median age in the city was 27.8 years. 36.1% of residents were under the age of 18; 9.6% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 25.6% were from 25 to 44; 19.2% were from 45 to 64; and 9.5% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.4% male and 50.6% female.

Notable people

  • Lavina Fielding Anderson, LDS scholar and author
  • Curt Brinkman, Paralympic athlete
  • Lewis Croft, actor
  • Brad Daw, member of the Utah House of Representatives
  • Hadley Foster, men's college volleyball coach
  • Ogden Kraut, religious author
  • Darwin Young, former member of the Idaho House of Representatives
  • Dan Dockstader, President Wyoming State Senate, two-time Wyoming state delegate to National Republican Convention (2012, 2016)
  • John L. Moore, former state senator, Idaho state delegate to 1932 National Democratic Convention.
kids search engine
Shelley, Idaho Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.