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We're Open For the Summer

We are now open on Saturday and Sunday 12:00 PM to 5:00 PM. Check our calendar page or our Facebook page for more details.

The Original Kootenai County Jail

Built in 1892. The original design for the Kootenai County jail was to include the Kootenai County hospital as well as the offices and living quarters of the sheriff and the jailer. Eight cells were for the prisoners in one large brick room and there were also rooms for the women and the people judged insane on their way to Blackfoot.

The First Kootenai County Seat

Rathdrum - the First Kootenai County Seat. 1881 - 1908.

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To celebrate the town centennial in 1981 a Westwood Historical Society was formed. Their immediate projects were to write a history of Rathdrum and to catalog the old pictures the town clerk Lois Poston had gathered. Dave Osterbeck, the Kootenai County Preservation Officer, wrote the history and Ann Webb catalogued the pictures. A few meetings were held and some artifacts were collected but the Society became inactive soon after the projects were done.

Another small group of people started the present Historical Society when it became evident that the old Kootenai County jail was dilapidated to the point where something had to be done. They and the City wrote a grant to replace the roof and the City under Tawnda Bromley supervised the replacement. The small group of people remained active and the City gave them the jail in 2007. They worked for some years to make the jail into a museum but the real activators were Don and Dorothy Jacklin who donated money in 2010 to restore the jail according to the original blueprints. The Society has accomplished much since then but new members and volunteers are definitely needed.