A Brief History Of Rexburg, Idaho


Welcome to Rexburg, Idaho, a small college town rich in history and culture. In this article, we'll be taking you back in time to explore the history of this fascinating city - from its origins as a settlement in the early 1900s, to its current status as an up-and-coming college town. Join us on a journey through Rexburg's exciting past and find out what makes this unique place so special!


How Rexburg got its name


In 1883, the town was named after Rex E. Blake, the son of one of the area's early settlers. However, some say that the town was actually named after a horse that belonged to another early settler. The horse's name was Rex, and it was said to be the biggest and strongest horse in the area.


17 years old, first settler of Rexburg


17 years old, first settler of Rexburg


In 1834, a young man named John Taylor settled in the area that would become Rexburg. He was just 17 years old at the time, and is therefore considered the first permanent settler of Rexburg. Taylor built a log cabin near present-day Main Street, and over the next few years more settlers began to arrive in the area. The town of Rexburg was officially founded in 1883.


First families to settle in the area


The first families to settle in the area were the Tullidge and Mitchell families. They were joined by the Smith, Skinner, and Tolman families in 1864. The first permanent settlers in Rexburg were the Tullidge and Mitchell families, who arrived in 1863. The Smith, Skinner, and Tolman families followed in 1864. These families were drawn to the area by the promise of good farmland and a mild climate.


Continued Gospel outreach in the area


Rexburg, Idaho is a beautiful small town located in the heart of Madison County. With a population of just over 25,000 people, Rexburg is home to Brigham Young University-Idaho (BYU-Idaho), one of the largest private universities in the United States.


The community of Rexburg has a long history of Latter-day Saint settlement and continues to be an important center for gospel outreach in the area. The first Latter-day Saint settlers arrived in Rexburg in 1883, led by Captain Conrad Grebel. These early pioneers were attracted to the area by its fertile land and proximity to the Yellowstone River.


Captain Grebel and his fellow settlers established a thriving community and soon built a significant irrigation system that allowed them to bring water from the river to their farms. The early settlers also built a gristmill and a sawmill, which provided much-needed lumber for construction projects.


In 1888, the Rexburg Academy was founded by Church leaders as a boarding school for Latter-day Saint students. The academy operated for nearly 50 years before it was converted into Ricks College (now BYU-Idaho).


Today, Rexburg continues to be an important center for Latter-day Saint educational institutions and church activity. Additionally, many businesses and organizations in town cater to the needs of students attending BYU-Idaho.


Transformed into a university town


Rexburg, Idaho is a small town located in the heart of Idaho. The town is home to Brigham Young University – Idaho, which is a private university owned and operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church).


The university was founded in 1888 as Bannock Academy, a Latter-day Saint boarding school. In 1903, the school was renamed Rexburg Academy after the late local LDS Church leader Thomas E. Rexburg. The academy closed its doors in 1917 due to financial difficulties arising from World War I.


In 1923, the LDS Church restarted the institution as Ricks College, named after its founder Franklyn D. Richards. Ricks College became a junior college in 1929 and began offering four-year degrees in 1931. It attained university status and was renamed Brigham Young University – Idaho in 2001.


Since its founding, BYU–Idaho has transformed Rexburg into a thriving university town. The school has an enrollment of over 15,000 students and employs over 2,000 faculty and staff members. The university's economic impact on the surrounding area is estimated to be over $1 billion annually.


In addition to its academic offerings, BYU–Idaho also provides students with opportunities to participate in extracurricular activities like sports, service projects, and student clubs and organizations. The school's athletic teams compete in Division I of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) as members of the West Coast Conference




Rexburg, Idaho has a very interesting and varied history that stretches back centuries. From the original Native American inhabitants to today's modern city and all of the changes in between, this little town holds many secrets about its past. Its mix of cultures and communities over time have left their mark on Rexburg, creating a vibrant community with something for everybody. Thanks for taking a moment to learn more about how our beloved Rexburg came to be!