Location in Lewis County and the state of Idaho
|• Total||0.76 sq mi (2.0 km2)|
|• Land||0.76 sq mi (2.0 km2)|
|• Water||0 sq mi (0 km2)|
|Elevation||3,740 ft (1,140 m)|
|• Estimate (2012)||511|
|• Density||659.2/sq mi (254.5/km2)|
|Time zone||Pacific (PST) (UTC-8)|
|• Summer (DST)||PDT (UTC-7)|
|GNIS feature ID||0399839|
The city is named for Colonel William Craig (1809–69), a mountain man who had a Nez Perce wife. He settled at Lapwai near his father-in-law Hin-mah-tute-ke-kaikt or James in 1840 when he gave up being a fur trapper due to the collapse of the market for beaver. A town named "Chicago", one mile west of the current Craigmont, was founded in 1898. In response to not getting their mail from the Post Office, it was renamed "Ilo" four years later, after Ilo Leggett, daughter of town founder and merchant W.O. Leggett. A fire burnt the town in 1904 and shortly thereafter the Camas Prairie Railroad bypassed the town and started a settlement, platted by Lewiston financier John P. Vollmer, on the northeast side of the railroad tracks, and he named it "Vollmer." Ilo responded and moved its community to the southwest side of the tracks, adjacent to Vollmer. After a decade-long feud and the consolidation of the school districts, the communities merged in 1920 to become Craigmont.
The climate in this area has mild differences between highs and lows, and there is adequate rainfall year round. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Craigmont has a marine west coast climate, abbreviated "Cfb" on climate maps.
Four miles (7 km) south of the city is Lawyers Creek Canyon, with large railroad trestles of the Camas Prairie Railroad, whose second subdivision arrived on the Camas Prairie in 1908 and extended to Grangeville the following year. The largest is the massive century-old steel trestle, 1,488 feet (454 m) in length and its track 287 feet (87 m) above the creek. After several ownership changes since 1998, the line from Spalding is now operated by BG&CM Railroad and terminates in Cottonwood. Passenger service on the Camas Prairie ended in 1955.
Northbound U.S. Route 95 was formerly routed westward through Craigmont as Main Street, then resumed westward toward Winchester. The highway was re-routed in 1991 and now bypasses Craigmont on its south side. Southbound, the new route between Craigmont and Ferdinand stays out of the canyon, crossing it on a 919-foot (280 m) bridge (photo) which opened in October 1991 and passes over the site of the previous 82-foot (25 m) bridge, built in 1948. After the bridge, the southbound highway passes to the east of Ferdinand, a new routing completed in 1993.
As of the census of 2010, there were 501 people, 230 households, and 149 families residing in the city. The population density was 659.2 inhabitants per square mile (254.5/km2). There were 261 housing units at an average density of 343.4 per square mile (132.6/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 95.2% White, 0.6% Native American, 1.0% Asian, 0.2% Pacific Islander, 1.6% from other races, and 1.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.0% of the population.
There were 230 households of which 21.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.3% were married couples living together, 7.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.0% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.2% were non-families. 31.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.18 and the average family size was 2.68.
The median age in the city was 49.4 years. 18.2% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.2% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 18.2% were from 25 to 44; 37.8% were from 45 to 64; and 19.8% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.7% male and 50.3% female.
As of the census of 2000, there were 556 people, 225 households, and 157 families residing in the city. The population density was 743.8 people per square mile (286.2/km²). There were 248 housing units at an average density of 331.8 per square mile (127.7/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 97.12% White, 1.44% Native American, 0.36% Asian, 0.90% from other races, and 0.18% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.54% of the population.
There were 225 households out of which 31.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.9% were married couples living together, 6.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.2% were non-families. 23.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 2.94.
In the city the population was spread out with 26.6% under the age of 18, 5.8% from 18 to 24, 28.1% from 25 to 44, 24.3% from 45 to 64, and 15.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 109.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 105.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $31,806, and the median income for a family was $36,719. Males had a median income of $36,250 versus $21,250 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,548. About 12.9% of families and 13.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.9% of those under age 18 and 11.5% of those age 65 or over.
Craigmont is the home of Highland High School, with 20-25 students per class year. The Huskies compete in athletics at the IHSAA Class 1A level. The Highland Joint School District #305 was established in 1962 and includes Craigmont, Winchester, Melrose, and Reubens. The current campus of the school was constructed in 1952.
- "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-18.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-18.
- "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-06-03.
- Alvin M. Joseph, The Nez Perce and the Opening of the Northwest (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1971)
- Holbrook, R.L. (September 3, 1946). "Area prepares ti observe Craig centennial". Lewiston Morning Tribune. p. 9.
- Holbrook, Robert L. (October 28, 1946). "Col. William Craig, early settler of central Idaho". Lewiston Morning Tribune. p. 8.
- "Craig settled 124 years ago". Lewiston Morning Tribune. November 21, 1964. p. 9.
- Conley, Cort. Idaho for the Curious. Cambridge: Backeddy, 1982, 623-626. ISBN 0-9603566-3-0.
- Currier, Della (October 6, 1955). "Craigmont evolved after bitter feuding". Lewiston Morning Tribune. p. 11.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Craigmont, Idaho
- Climate Summary for Craigmont, Idaho
- panoramio.com - photos of the Lawyers Creek Canyon trestles
- Campbell, Thomas J. (December 11, 1938). "Camas Prairie Railroad marks 30th anniversary". Lewiston Morning Tribune. p. 12.
- "Camas Prairie Railroad 'Bugs' reach end of the line today". Lewiston Morning Tribune. August 23, 1955. p. 12.
- "Lawyers Canyon Bridge set to open today". Lewiston Morning Tribune. October 8, 1991. p. 8A.
- "Lawyers Canyon span contract is awarded". Lewiston Morning Tribune. December 13, 1947. p. 14.
- "North & South Highway Clear". Lewiston Morning Tribune. March 28, 1948. p. 9.
- "New section of U.S. 95 may be done by Sept. 1". Lewiston Morning Tribune. March 24, 1993. p. 8A.
- "Around the Region: U.S. Highway 95 finds its way around Ferdinand". Lewiston Morning Tribune. September 4, 1993. p. 5A.
- Moffatt, Riley. Population History of Western U.S. Cities & Towns, 1850-1990. Lanham: Scarecrow, 1996, 91.
- "Subcounty population estimates: Idaho 2000-2007" (CSV). United States Census Bureau, Population Division. 2009-03-18. Retrieved 2009-04-28.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Highland picked as name for new consolidated high school". Lewiston Morning Tribune. October 16, 1962. p. 9.
- "Bus routes". Highland Joint School District. Retrieved October 30, 2012.