Shoshone is a railroad town in the Snake River Basin, and the county seat of Lincoln County. Although it is named after Shoshone Indian tribe, the name is pronounced show-shown. The railroad runs right through the center of town, with the main street, which is called South Rail Street, parallel to it. On the other side of the tracks is North Rail Street. The Wood River also runs through the town.
The Snake River Basin, in which Shoshone lies, was formed by lava flows in ancient times, producing a relatively flat landscape, many areas of which still show the jagged formations left by the cooling lava. Other areas have accumulated a layer of dirt over the lava. Shoshone is also in an area called Magic Valley, so named because of the transformation from desert to farmland by irrigation (largely from the Snake River). Areas where the soil is good are now covered in green fields.
The Shoshone Ice Caves, a few miles north of town, are lava tube caves which stay cold enough through the summer that ice in the cave never melts. Before modern conveniences, they provided a way for locals to refrigerate things.
Four highways meet at Shoshone. U.S. Highway 26 passes through going east-west. U.S. Highway 93 approaches from the south, and turns at Shoshone, sharing the route with highway 26 to the east. State Highway 24 begins at the south edge of town and heads east and State Highway 75 begins in the center of town and heads north.
Shoshone was founded in 1882, as the railroad was being built. The population today (as of 2000) is 1,398. The elevation is 3,960 feet.