Ketchum, Idaho

Forest Service Park, Ketchum, Idaho
Forest Service Park in Ketchum
Atkinson Park in Ketchum, Idaho

Ketchum was a mining and ranching town founded during the big mining boom in central Idaho in 1879. Sitting in the same valley, Ketchum is a sister city to Sun Valley and the two share many resources. Gary Cooper, Ann Sothern and Adam West all hung out here for many years. Ernest Hemingway lived here for many years and this is where he took his own life. He and his granddaughter, Margaux Hemingway, are buried in the Ketchum Cemetery, sharing the family plot.

Ketchum is named for a trapper and guide named David Ketchum. In the 1880's, the mining district around Ketchum was one of the richest in the Northwest but by the early 1890's, the price of silver was in decline and so were Ketchum's fortunes. Then sheep ranching became the big money-maker around here with millions of sheep passing through the area on their way to summer pastures in the Sawtooth, Pioneer and Boulder Mountains. By 1920, Ketchum was the largest rail station in the US for shipping sheep and lambs.

In 1936, Averill Harriman (Chairman of the Board of Union Pacific Railroad) opened the ski resort at Sun Valley and Ketchum's fortunes rose yet again. Games of chance were also a big thing in the area in those days, until they were completely banned by the state in 1954.

Fast Facts about Ketchum, Idaho
Ketchum, Blaine County, ID 83340
Founded: 1879
Elevation: 5,853'
Latitude: 43.6807°N
Longitude: 114.3636°W
Resident Racial Breakdown:
White Non-Hispanic: 78.8%
Hispanic: 21.2%
High School or Higher: 95.3%
Bachelor's Degree or Higher: 51.9%
Graduate or Professional Degree: 14.0%
2009 Estimates:
Population: 3,376
Males: 1,814
Females: 1,562
Median Resident Age: 39.0 Years
Estimated Median Household Income: $56,600
Estimated Median Home Value: $350,000
Population Density: 1,114 People per Square Mile
2011 Cost of Living Index for Ketchum: 116.4
Major Industries:
Lodging & Food Services, Construction, Professional Services, Real Estate Services, Health Care, Waste Management Services, Finance & Insurance Services, Arts & Entertainment, Retail Services
Unemployed (March 2011): 11.0%
Photos of Ketchum courtesy of the City of Ketchum
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