Pictured above are the hills surrounding Boise. Not surprising, then, that the Basque came to Idaho, as well as other western states. The first Basques came over in the late 1800s, some wanting to get in on the gold rush, others just stopping in places like Idaho and Nevada. California presently has the most Basques.. Those who came over first built boarding houses which could accommodate 15 to 20 people. These places were more than a place to sleep and eat, there were magnets for the Basque culture. Next door to the museum is a boarding house built by Cyrus Jacobs in 1864. It is the oldest surviving brick dwelling in Boise. Several families lived here over the years and took in boarders until 1969 when the house was was purchased for the purpose of preserving it. It is located on a block of other Basque buildings in Boise. By the way, the oak tree is a sapling of the oak tree which stands near the medieval Bizkaian town of Gernika, a Basque country village.
One last item here. Earlier in this posting I mentioned the town of Gernika. It was burned during the Spanish Civil War (1937). Spain's ruler Francisco Franco ordered the bombing, but he insisted the town bombed themselves. Pablo Picasso's painting Guernica (Basque name for Gernika) was his response to that tragedy and the pain it caused. A copy of that painting is in the museum. Today Gernika is a sister city to Boise.
In the Basque neighborhood is a cafe offering the food of the old country. I had lamb stew with croquetas de pollo, John had a chorizo sandwich. A good ending to our day!