Back in 1860, John Welch settled in the area that is now Cascade and established a station for freight on its way from Oregon to the mining camps in Idaho City, north of Boise. A couple of decades later, more settlers arrived and began transporting the region’s fish and produce to Boise Valley for sale. In 1912, the town of Cascade was named for the dramatic falls that existed on the North Fork of the Payette River near town. A dam was built in 1948, however, and Cascade Reservoir covered up the falls; nevertheless, the town’s name stuck.
Cascade has served as the county seat for Valley County since 1917. Today, its primary economies are agriculture, logging, and ranching—as well as tourism from those visiting to enjoy Cascade’s natural beauty and year-round recreational opportunities.