In 1878, the Utah Northern Railroad extended its line into northern Cache Valley. It ended at a terminus called " Dunnville (map)," which was a riotous tent city. Dunnville consisted of stores, boarding houses, saloons, eating places and a blacksmith shop, all under canvas.
Nathan Smith (cemetery marker) had a good-sized boarding house there at that time. He also had a little log house. The log house was used as a shop on the Hugh S. Geddes farm for years. Then, about 1950, the descendants of Nathan Smith moved the little log house to the Banida Church grounds, set in on a cement slab, and put a roof over it. There it sits today.
When the Utah Northern tracks were pushed northward, Dunnville ceased to exist.
About 1906, a group of hardy pioneers again settled where the town of Dunnville once was. Some of those hardy souls were Ether Esplin, Jed Miles (biographical sketch), James D. Taylor, Lorenzo Anderson, Jared Jensen, William Patterson, Don Baxter, William J. Randall, Robert C. Geddes, Hugh L. Geddes, Ernest Dixon, and Heber, Louis and Ezra Allen. They struggled along for a few years staking their claims and building homes. They were all about the same age and very congenial. These young pioneers liked to meet together both in religious services and in recreational activities.
On April 23. 1910, following a ball game, a preliminary meeting was held on the southeastern part of the Nielsen and Geddes farm to find out how the people felt about forming a ward. A meeting was then called on May 7, 1910, to investigate the advisability of putting plans for a ward organization into effect. A committee was appointed to set the boundary lines. A motion was made by Robert C. Geddes that a ward be organized; the motion was seconded by Heber Allen. It carried by unanimous vote. There were forty-eight present at that meeting.
BANIDA WARD, Oneida Stake, Bannock and Franklin counties, Idaho, consists of the Latter-day Saints residing in a farming district lying east of Oxford and Clifton and north of Winder and west of Treasureton. The center of the ward is about 3 1/2 miles northeast of Clifton and about thirteen miles northwest of Preston. The inhabitants, nearly all Latter-day Saints, are mostly engaged in dry farming and stockraising.
Banida Ward is an outgrowth of Oxford, Clifton, Winder and Treasureton. The name was suggested from the fact that the center of the ward is near the boundary line between Bannock and Oneida counties, the "Ban" standing for Bannock and "Ida" for Oneida, the settlement being partly in Bannock and partly in Oneida Co. The neighborhood was first known as Richfield, on account of the fertility of the soil in that part of Idaho. At a meeting held at Richfield Oct. 30, 1910, attended by Pres. Joseph S. Geddes of the Oneida Stake presidency, parts of the Oxford, Clifton, Winder and Treasureton wards were detached and organized into a new and separate bishop's ward named Banida with James Daniel Taylor as Bishop. He was succeeded in 1914 by James S. Geddes, who in 1918 was succeeded by Sidney J. Ottley, who in 1922 was succeeded by Jeddie L. Miles (cemetery marker), who in 1929 was succeeded by James Daniel Taylor (serving a second term). He presided Dec. 31, 1930, on which date the Banida Ward had a membership of 166, including 40 children.