There was a groundbreaking that October in Chicago to mark the anniversary. In the whirlwind of construction that followed that ceremonial shoveling, the 1893 Columbian Exposition became a reality.
Everything was Columbian or named after Columbus for months before and after. Boise had (and still has) its Columbian Club, which gathered artifacts for the Idaho exhibit. Less well known was that Boise also had the Columbia Theater. Unlike the Exposition, groundbreaking was in 1892, and the theater’s opening night was in December of the same year.
The mayor of Boise at the time, James Pinney, built the Columbia. Designed by Tourtellotte and Hummel, who later served as architects for the Egyptian Theater, the Columbia was striking, though a bit odd looking. Its style was French renaissance.
The Columbia had a pretty good run, lasting 16 years before the former mayor replaced it with the much larger Pinney Theater in 1908. Its run was longer, but the redevelopment wrecking ball took it down in 1969.