C. C. Anderson – Charter Member

History Minute

Imagine a chilly Halloween night. You’re eight years old and the year is 1955. Yards and sidewalks are covered with fallen autumn leaves and there’s a bite in the air that says snow is on it’s way. You’re bundled in winter clothes beneath your pirate or princess costume and childlike excitement has overcome you.

Friends have been telling you for years that you haven’t trick-or-treated until you’ve been to Warm Springs Avenue and number 929 in particular.

The Cutter Mansion belonging to C. C. Anderson, one of our club’s charter members, was the Mecca of every trick-or-treating expedition. Not only did they give the best candy, but C. C. Anderson himself was the one answering the door to over 900 eager children.

Other children remember that Mr. Anderson used to toss pennies to children he passed along the street or encountered in the aisles of his huge department store, then known as The Golden Rule, later to become the Bon Marche and Macy’s.

C. C. Anderson was born in a log cabin in Missouri, the son of a horse trader. In 1896, at the age of 23, he moved to Boise and founded the Golden Rule Store. He had learned the retail business in Colorado alongside his co-worker, J. C. Penney. Both young men revolutionized the retail department store concept and compiled great fortunes. By 1950, Mr. Anderson had a chain of 34 stores.

In 1898, at the age of 25, C. C. Anderson married Boise resident Henrietta Walter. They were not to have children of their own, but were obviously very fond of children. Mr. Anderson was president of the Idaho Children’s Home Finding and Aid Society, and a trustee of St. Luke’s Hospital. He was active in civilian activities to support both World Wars I and II, and was a trustee of the First Methodist Church of Boise.

The substantial amounts he gave and willed to the Church enabled the completion of the Cathedral of the Rockies.

C. C. Anderson passed away in 1958 at the age of 85. The Cutter Mansion that he commissioned and inhabited at 929 Warm Springs Avenue was eventually willed to Boise State University for use as the future home of its presidents. It is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Copied from notes prepared by Cindy Conway & presented in 2008 or 2009