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Photography by Earl Roberge"Born "in incredible beauty, flowing through incredible des-

olation, nouris hing incredible fertility . . ."So begins Bill Gullck's story of the Snake, perhaps the last

important wild river left in the Pacific Northwest, a r iver thathas, in earlier times, played a monumental role in exploration,in empire and in settlement. Now, because the wide expanse ofcountry through which it Hows is sparsely settled and capableof grea t development in the yea rs to come, the pres ent andfuture of the Snake should be as vitally interesting to thereader as its colorful past. 195 pages. l l ' i x U ^ , 100 full-colorillustrations by Earl Rotxirge.Cloth, boxed J35.00 ISBN 0-3700-1-215-7

OYVYHEE TRAILS:Th e West's Forgotten CornerMike Hanicy with Ellis Lucia

The Owyhees. as they rise impressively from the high des-ert of Oregon and Idaho, have been the site of mining boomsand Indian battles, holdups and range wars. Precious nietala

abounded on their slopes, and their valleys held another sortof riches in the form ci" wa ter and feed for cattle and she ep.Rancher-author Mike Hartley, who lives in Jordan Valley,Oregon, under the shadow of the Owyhee Mountains, and hiscollaborator, the well-known writer. Ellis Lucia, recount thoboisterous past and intriguing present of this still wild cornerof the West. 6x9, 225 pagta. 102 pho tos.

Taper $9.95 ISBN 0-S7001-2SI-5


Don and Myrtle HolmOne of the near-lost culinary arts that is only now boir.p

rediscovered is that of muHttoUKJi cookery. Here, the Holmsoffer otic of the most significant collection* of eveipes to henildthis revival. Frnm the rig ht "s tar ter " to delicious souriiouphbrea ds, cakes, waffles, and even pizzas, all the items hav e

been tested a~ain and airain in the modern kitchen. Manyhave been adapted for the hunter and camper, to be conked asthey once were, in the camp stove or over the campfire.Taper

SttJIS ISBN fl-S7004-22:J-S


Don and Myrtle Holm"... there is a revolution in eating and the preparation an d

preservation of tht} nvu*jabtg foods in a Fhrinkiiu? world. Shor-tages and continued rising* prices for supermarket poods, willmake it imperative that home makers (earn how and routinelypractice the OId-time a r t s of preserving foods.

"You can have fun at the same time you are becomingself-taught an d proficient in the ancient and wonderful waysof Prying, Pickling, and Smoke Curing."Paper S3.95 I SB N 0-STUiH-2.")D-.i


The fust of its kinu in print, this is primarily* an outdoorcookbook specializing in altl-foshloned Dutch oven ook cry an din sourdough reripoa. There a re numerous templing r**ei(,vs

for hungry fishermen am i hunters, including po t nmsts. mtii-liiran stews. ami di.she< made from bestr menu buffalo, wooil-chiu-k. It has a special sec t ion on sourdough cooking, an dfavorite recipes of several outdoor writers of tlw Nrn'thwesc.

Cover plate by Churit-s Cur ltd ing. Sketches by Jack Otftvr-

Paper S...93 ISItN 047004-133-9


James L. Him tieifH<'ie is the first tencthy account of tho water tr;m.<ptii;a-

t ioniv stcni . such as it ivn*,that served Idaho from the time ofLewis ami Clark until ch« present . Even before the com m e ofthe white man. the native peoplva of th e Gem Slate knew themany grvat rivers in their land and how to cross them. This inth e story of the Idaho frtTyboats ami :he important part theyplayed m the settlement and development of our beautifuljitatt?< iix^ inches. -~3 p;i£*?5, 1-7 photographs, 27 maps.

Twenty Miles From a Match: Homesieading inWe stern Nev ada by Sarah E. OldsIn I9C8, Sarah Olds packed up her brood and went home-lrtad ing in the desert 35 miles north of Reno. With her invalidhusba nd, jhe and her family m ade a home ou* of a rude cabin,planted fruit tee s and a garden, drilled for water, hunted sagehen s for sale in Reno, and built a schoolhouse. This story b foranyone who has ever dreamed of pioneering. It is a trueaccount, told simpty and honestly, with a dtifightfol sense ofhumor. "A book to warm the cockles of your heart and makeyou proud of the human race." -PacificHistorian. ISBN 052-4.1SZ pp.. dlus.. $5.50

Western C arpetbagger: The Extraordinary MemoirsOr "Se nat or" in om as Fitch by Eric N. MoodyThomas Fitch tried his hand at everything from law to miningto politics. But his true fame was earned as the premier carpet-bagger of them all. "the most corrupt man that ever followedpolitics on the coast." But this reputation may have beenundeserved. The memoirs from the pen of Thomas Fitch re-veal a fascinating individual who was humorous, scandalous.4nd sensitive. This emertaining view of the frontier west isheightened by little-known glimpses of Mark Twain, JohnFremont, Wyaet carp. Brigham Young, and Virginia City min-ing magna:es. "Those who love the humor, adventure andaudacity or the Old West will prize Western Carpetbagger."-NeOttil Stetc journal. ISBN OSQ-S. 2&i pp.. $5.25

Marth a and the Doctor: A Frontier Family inCe nt r al N ev ad a by Marvin Lewis

Caught up by S'jld And s i l v e r E e v e r ' Martha and James Ga

left their secure home in Ohio and headed for Austin, Nevain 1864. For ten years their lives look a dow nwa rd path

despair until their iuck finally changed. Their remarkable stwas pieced together using the diary entries of Martha and journalistic writings of her doctor-husband James. Wemerged was a fascinating study of two opposing viewsfrontier l ife. While her husband saw only the adventure excitement of their new life. Martha focused on the povefear, and misery of the frontier. "A rich addition to the vfe-.v family chronicles of early statehood Nevada." -WesHistorical Quarterly. IS3S 049-4. 247 pp.. 55.00

Har ds drabble: A Narrative of the California HillCo un try by Anita KunklerTold throu gh the eyes of a growing girl , these personal reniscences are the story of 4 family and an area which continued to mirror early frontier practices, it reflects theroic geography of Nannem California and reveais the crisolation and harsh physical conditions ot life in a diffitime. "Related with such candor that we are left with a vincing portrait of a rustic way of life which remains a paour cultural heritage." -Library journal. ISBN 044-2. 238illus.. 55.00

H i s t o r y o f N e v a d a , 1 5 4 0 - 1 8 3 3by Hubert Howe BancroftBancott's Historyof Nevadawas first published in 1890 as pan ota thirty-nine volume history of states and countries stretchingfrom Alaska to Pana ma, th e book appeared just at'ter themining decline, enabling Bancroft to desci.be the events with asense of im mediac y. The history begins in 15-10 with a des crip-tion of exploration in the earliest days. It continues with adiscussion cf emigrants, eariy settlers, and the Comstock Lodeand doses with a review of state politics and development ofthe state's resou rces throug h 18H3. Indu ces a new foreword byJames Huise. "Finest wont ever done on the history of thewestern United States." —L a Ve$as Review journal. /55.V C63-),347pp., maps, $3.00

Story of th e Mineby Claries ShinnWh en it was first prin ted in Mew York City in 1896, Vte Slonofthe Mine received instant natiunat accuim ortd went throughten printings. It is a remarkably revealing history uf one jf trieWest's richest mining strikes, the Comstock Lode of \'evaca.

"The story ot the Comstoclt is ail there in Shlnn's articulatelan^'jage: the nse and tall ot the silver kings, the chicanery,and hard work, the stock dealing? and the impact Upon na-tional politics and economics." —BlllittgS Cuzette. /S3.V 059-1.~~~P$

s-- 3kis., So.50


Eugene CunninghamA gallery of frun fighte rs—W ild Bill, Billy the K id, Be n

Thompson. Captain Ji m Gil'tiS, Ranger Bill Mac Donald, Gen-eral Leu Christmas, wolfish Boss Outlaw, gr-.m John Slaugh-ter. Curly Bill, ami A hostof uthera—whostooil behind the scaran d same whom they faced across drawn pistols during alive inthti pugttS of Tritj-jfrtinrnvtrij.

As a veteran novelist, Mr. Cunningham has been as muchin t r u s t e d i n the gunfighter'3 mind us in his Hashing ha nd ; .No t merely what a W'cx Hard n ilk!, bu t what quirk of mental-ity am i interplay of circumstances forced him to do it, is

ahaJuwed in the port rait, making Trfygemamelry br i l l iantbiogruphy as well as history.

SI2.93 1SUN 0-37004-0.124

Eureka and its Resourcesby Lambert MolinelliIn the late 1800s, the town of Eureka, Nevada, was seekinnew residents to heip stimulate its booming mining economyTo encourage growth, real estate agent Limb^rc MoiinelUwrote this promotional book to lure new citizens. He toutethe virtues of tlic town, including its prosperous mines, advanced transportation and communication tacuities (stage atelegraph), and handsome new buildings. To further embelish Eureka. MolinelU included advertisemenu rrum local puveyors and businessmen. This reprint preserves the originacontents and features a new foreword. "A charming account omining in boom rimes." —Psczf.c H-stanan. IS3N 069-9. 1P£5., liijis.,55.00

Early \*evada: Period of Ex ploration , 1/ / 6— 1S4Sby Fred Nathaniel FletcherThis repnnt edition, ari^inallv published in 1929. focuses oan ttlCittng period ut history tilled with e.xcnorers. fur trappe rand tracers. Usini; first-hand accounts. Fletcher brines to lifthe adventures at e.\?lorers who often t'cund themseives trav

eling across ti-.e liarsa desert without food, water, wood, ogra^s tor their livestock, "Ketcher focuses urcn the early e.xptorera, and the taie he teiis of their adveniures is art excirirno r - e t o r uve boc k i n r nn t . " -BooksoftheSaUthiVtSt. IS3N 06195 pp.. map. $5.25

Water and PowerThe Conflict over

[.os Angeles' Water Supply

in the Owens Valley

WILLIAM L. KAURI.•TTiis is ihc definitive ura un i of h w LAngeles inured in waicr supply from iC^eni Valtey «e!l wriiicn ind icicarchtltc [wok ibnutnli with cntorful petw oiirin ami drainauc c*emi Unlifce earlierhinoties, ii urricj lire Owens Valley sioBp»ibcpie*eiH.»Ulin Fipaiiynewciemcnu io i fjwilijf situy . ,i to lid.ihouglitlul md pruvotjcnc Jtiidy.11

— pjiifl'e Hiito

"Here, in cngjging unplktutc jnrf iniptebcnsive ind rn.li ilnatl. n the m


Wayn e SpttriingSmuhi-rn Maho hj.< many ghost towns scattered aniomr its

mo'.int.iitis mid liosortd. In th is bm^k. \V:iyi:c Sfurlin ^prov iilca;iti exceliun t truiilo to eijrhty-fo«r •»(" them , ius crib inj j ti*...- hu*tury of uai-h ainl its current state of [lrvsuriratitm. ManyphutoK'ruph.i show Ititflilichu of ttto sitea, and mi\\ta ptnjutittIhe iucut itms. lc will b« Wflajimrd by the vviMc-rncsa explorerami the arm cha ir trav eler ul tko. 'Kil 133 paia.*s.

I\l[HT I31IN M70OI-229-T

pclusi nipj ial a i ycl

— Lot Aagrfai T"A brilliant book, b* far the h«i I havetic* KM ] ihimi tlie Itrv element (n iliedneloptnfni of the America Sututmcwawr "Vt'jict atui E*ttwcr u riot onlythe mm dcutlnl boofc on ihe nibjeci bdie firji o«c to jucrr'>t n» he baUm ed

and hit. and. more impurunt, io stuicr-,%>;<• YarkTt

HTiffiam I.. K.ihritduocsiiil [irujcK duKtfairurJ CMtfornu

die i«3H|.wmiiin|t

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E d i t o r

M . B A N D I N I , P h o t o E d i t o r

P . 'R I C H A R D S - C i r c u l a t i o n

E D I T O R .1S L E T T E R

F O R !1







R E D M 3 0 N T A I N U P D A T E






O B I T U A R Y - E A G L E M O U N T A I N





Magazine • Since 1937

Volume 47 , Number 1 OCTOBER 1983

4 DW G r a n t h a m

5 N e v a d a H i s t o r y

8 T h e B o o k s t o r e9 J o h n D . M i t c h e l l

3 . 0 T h e D e s e r t S t a f f

1 1 DW G r a n t h a m

1 4 O r a L e e O b e r t e u f f e r

1 8 J e r r y L a u d e r m i l k

2 1 D e s e r t S t a f f

2 2 D e s e r t S t a f f

2 3 D e s e r t S t a f f

2 4 t fe xy B e a l

2 5 M r s . W h i t e M o u n t a i n S m i t h

2 8 P r a n k C . I o ck x ?o od

3 1 D e s e r t S t a f f

3 5 R i c h a r d V a n V a l k e r i b u r g h

3 3 V a r i o u s C o n t r i b u t o r s

3 9 L u c i l l e C & r l e s c n

4 0 C h a r l e s K e l l y

EDITORIAL, CIRCULATION, and ADVERTISING o f f i c e s a r e Located au 11213 Pain Drive,Dascrt Hot Springs , Cal i fornia 92240, Telephone (619) 251-1150. Address al lmail t o Post Office Box 1318, Palm D esert , Calif. 92261. Subscription rates :USA, $12 .00 , Foreign $15.00 p er year . "See sub scrip tion farm in this is sue ,POSTMASTER: Sond change of address bv Forn 3579 to DESERT MAGAZINE, P. 0. BOK1 3 1 8 , Palm Desert , Calif. 92261. DESERT MAGAZINE i s published every other(oven numbered) month. Copyright: 1933 by DESE3.T MAGAZINE. A ll r i g h t s reserved.No pa re o f th is p ub lica tio n nav be reproduced in any manner without securingwritten permission frcra th e publ i s he r . CQ-rrrJIiuriO'-:::: The editor welcanesun so li ci te d manuscripts and photographs but: th ey can be ret urn ed ONLY ir: accan-panied by a ful ly postage paid return env elop e. While we Lrcai; submissions with] jving c are, we do no;: assume res po ns ib ili ty fo r l o ss o r damage. Wr iters Guideis free wit h S.A.S.E. (la rge ), with sample copy of magazine, Si.CO


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I can a l m o s t hear s o m e o n e out t h e r e r e m a r k i n g "Oh No , not

a n o t h e r e d i t o r" . T h e r e is some truth to that, c o m m e n t . I seem

to be th e 4t h editor of DESERT MAGAZINE in th e past ?. years.

One must think that it is a d a n g e r o u s job.

I d o not took at it that way . Th e " n e w " DESERT MAGAZINE

is really th e "old " DESERT MAGAZINE to me., It is the one I

used to wait for th e postman to deliver. My job as editor is

a rewarding one as I g et to read th e magazine from cover to

c o v e r, r e v i ew potential a r t i c l e s , and meet many of our subsc-

ribers. I really enjoy t h a t . Along th e w ay , I even fine! time

to write an article or tw o.

It seems a shame to refer to writing an article for DESERT

as work,, I spent quite a bit of time r e s e a r c h i n g , h i k i n g , driv-

ing, and exploring for t h e article on th e T o n o p a h and Tidewater

railroad. Cut th e experience w as most enjoyable. I love th e

desert and history. My job c o m b i n e s b o t h .

DESERT will be developing over th e coining month s. We have new

typesetting equipment on o r d e r . Uhen delivered and i n s t a l l e d,

DESERT will look better and s h a r p e r, with more type styles.

Color on our pages is now basic black.. Multi-color present-

ations '/ill return in th e Soring as we have not yet developed o u r

"shop" for that y e t .

Lastly, advertising will be m i n i m i z e d . We encourage advert-

i s i n g , but only on desert related products,,

I hope y ou enjoy this cony of DESERT MAGA Z I NE. There is a

variety of articles not seen in recent years. Since DESERT is

returning to its older concept of more travel, h i s t o ry, ghost

towns and trails, m i n i n g , I ndians, etc., everyone can expect to

see and read much more. HAPPY READING.

O C T 1983

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Piautes, Shoshones, W a s h o s — The names struck:fear into the settlers- and travellers in NevadaAiring the 1850"s. Occassional 'skirmishes betweenthe Indians and the ever increasing flaw

7of sett-

l e r s , miners, and businessmen happened, but, dueto the tendency of news to be exaggerated, theseevents were reported as major 'wars or battles.

The tribes saw the settlers as invaders who . itrespassed on their lands, killed or scatteredtheir game, destroyed their pine nut trees, andangered, the great spirit. Then, in June 1859,gold was discovered in Gold Canyon, between whatwas to become Virginia City and Dayton. A newgold rush to "Washoe" as the strike v?as initiallyreferred to, ensued. Soon Utah Territory'sCarson County had an estimated. 5000 residents.This only served to put more pressure on theIndian populace to strike back.

Surprisingly, only 2 major events are noted--the murder of a Willow Creek Valley rancher andah attack on a trading post along the Carson River

known, as Williams Station. It was the Williamsincident that would lead to the building of FortChurchill.

On May 7, 1860 two of the Williams brothersand an employee were killed by w hat was assumedto be Indians. History is not clear on the trueidenity of the attackers.

The surviving brother (he was absent duringthe a t t a c k ) , James Williams, rode to the nearbyPony Express Station at Bucklands Station andsounded the alarm. Reacting emotionally, someresidents of the Cornstock formed a posse and,

under the leadership of Major William Ormsby,left Virginia. City on May 9 to extract a swiftrevenge on the Indians. Upon reaching BucklandsStation, some of the posse returned home, leavingOrmsby in charge of a 105 man posse.

North they marched toward Pyramid Lake. Nearthe lake, they attampted to engage the Piautes andwere soundly defeated. Of the 105 men in the

posse, 76 were killed, includingMajor Ormsby. The rest of theforce retreated and asked forfederal troops. ,Some federaltroops under Captain JosephStewart were sent to fight thePiautes. For over a month theychased the Indians and engaged

them as they found them. Thetroops were eventually to killA0 to 50 Indians. Stewart'sforce was then recalled.

On July 18, 1860 , Stewart,acting on orders to establishan army post on the Carson Riverselected a site near Bucklands.

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i h i s r:":2p s h o w s t h e a r e a a r o u n d F o r t C h u r c h i l l a n d th e p a t h t a k e n by M a j o r

O r m s b y ' s p o s s e . T h e b a t t l e t o o k p l a c e n e a r th e p r e s e n t d a y W a d s w o r t h .

Stewart suggested the new post be named after General Sylvester Churchill, and

h is request wa s promptly approved.

Construction immediately started, using adobe bricks as they could be manuf-

actured locally. The cost of construction wa s much more than the army had

estimated, but this was due to the remote location of the post and the demandfor g oods and sei"vices created by the silver rush currently going on along the

Cc m s t o c k . A total of 2 1 buildings w ere constructed.

A mail route to Virginia City w as established and the Placerville and Salt

Lake Telegraph Company extended their line to the fort. Here, important mess-

ages from the Eastern United States carried by the Pony Express were opened and

then telegraphed to California to insure a quicker delive ry. Eventually, this

telegraph line connected to a cross-country line at Salt Lake City, Utah and

put the Pony Ex press out of business.


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This is' a recent photograph of the adobe buildings.

Life at the fort was very routine. Reveille at daybreak, stable and water

call followed, then breakfast, and later fatigue call. At 9:00 .AM, the daily

guard w as mounted. There w as a 15 minute break at noon, followed by a 30 minute

meal break and then duties until 6: 00 EM. Thereafter, the men were on their own

time unless assigned a special task such as sentry duty or perimeter patrol.

The fort h ad no embankment or protective fence; it was open arid thus required

a 2 4 hour patrol.

Retreat wa s at sunset, tattoo at 8:30 FM and Taps 15 minutes later. And

for this, an enlisted man could exp ect to earn $13.00 per month.

During its ex istence, Fort Churchill troops fought no major battles with the

Indians. There were some small encounters and chases, but on the overall, most

Indians in the area remained friendly.

With the coining of th e Civil Uar, th e importance of the Fort increased. This

was d ue to the government's concern that Southern Sympathizers migh t try to get

control of Nevad a's silver wealth by taking over the state. Numerous Southern

sympathizers were arrested and jailed at the fort, usually they w ere released

after swearing allegance to the North.

The troops also aided the civil authorities. The governor of Nevad a, James

Nye, requested their help on numerous occassions. During this period, Nev ada

w as separated frcm Utah Territory and became a state.

After the Civil Uar, the fort was basically unneeded. Indians had stopped

attacking. Therefore, the Army Department ordered the fort decommissioned.

All of the buildings were auctioned off to Sam Buckland in 1870. He paid $750for the fort's buildings. They w ere torn dow n and moved to his ranch.

In 1935, there was some restoration work done to the fort. Finally, in 1957,

the site became a State Park. Today , th e site may be visited and explored with

the aid of signs that tell the visitor wh at each building w as. There is a picnic

area, Ranger station, and a campground. The visitors center has exh ibits on

the history of the fort. It is an interesting place to visit.

O C T 1983

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Water Supply For ThcComstocki

Early History • Development • Water Supply

\--.pticl to co-pernum Irllh



q SEVEN 'TROUGHS11; llngti A. Slunihcrgcr

Eirly HuUry • Dnrlupmml • W.ilrr Supply

• V - H I S T O R I C M I N I N G C A M P S O F N

jits' Neighbors

tarty.History ,';- fDevelopment •' • Water Su

•ft'"-'.-•< ; ' . ; ' B / " H U C H A .

:S H A M B ' E B C E H ; . " I d ' ' .• . '

Occassionally, along comes a book that isboth a pleasure toread and a

storehouse of aluable knowledge. It as been my ood luck to iscovernoto n e , but a whole series ofbooks on evada history that arereally good.

The author ofthis series isHugh A . Shamberger, a resident of evada'sWashoe Valley. Mr. Shamberger formerly served asState Engineer and Directorof th e Department ofConservation and atural Resources. His orks reflecta personal interest in ater resources and systems but they go ery farbeyond that intheir scope. Each volume borders onbeing the most complete

history oneach town I have ever seen written.Each v olume contains many pictures, seme ofthem very Tare, numerous

maps, charts, etc. Related areas are also covered. Each major mineisdetailed as ell asth e ater supply, th e townsite, businesses, post offices,newspapers, major events, mills, railroads, and mportant residents.

I w as ery impressed w ith h is ritings and in articular with th e epthof Mr. Shamberger

1s research. These books are anabsolute necessity for the

historian or host town buff.To date, ten ofthese histories have been published. They are:

N o . 1 Th e Story ofth e ater Supply for the Ccmstock.





The Story ofRawhide

The Story of Seven TroughsThe Story ofRochesterThe Story ofFairviewThe Story ofWonder

N o . 7 Th e Story ofWeepah

N o . 8 Th e Story ofSilver PeakN o . 9 Th e Story ofCandelariaNo.10 Th e Story ofGoldfield

My favorite isCandelaria. I hav e spent many d ays and igh ts camped in th earea, wandering, prospecting and just enjoying a Nevada Ghost Town. Th e DESERTBOOKSTORE h as o. 9,Candelaria, at$10.00 and N o . 1 0 , Goldfield, at$18.00available by mail. Order blanks areonthe ear inside cover. Other volunesmay beavailable by telephone order.

O C T 19838

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Taking a last look around to makesure no Indians were in the vicinity,they headed their horses down tnesteep mountainside toward the west•— an d out into the cactus covered

desert below.

The Apaches disclosed thesecret of this rich gold ledge tobu t onewhite m an —an d wh e nh e violated their confidence hemet with a myste r ious dea th .


I l lu s t r a t ion by F r a n k A d a m s

/ O BAD LY rusted Col t revolver such' / / as was used byarmy and frontiers-

men in the early days on the bor-

de r was recently found in the Arivaipacountry near old Fort Grant and is be-lieved by many of those who have seenit to be a clue to the lost Yuma gold ledgesaid to have been discovered by ApacheIndians long before old Geronimo andhis band of braves were rounded up andplaced on a reservation.

The outcropping of rich gold ore wasonce shown to a graduate of West Pointwhose real name seems to have been lostsomewhere in the mystic reaches of thepast. He is remembered only as " Y uma "

on account of having at one time beenacting-quartermaster at the post at FortY uma on the Colorado river. Because of

irregularities in his accounts th e officerwas courtmartialed and discharged fromthe army.

Feeling his disgrace keenly he shunnedhis former companions and hid himselfamong the Yuma Indians under ChiefPascual. Yuma was well liked by the In-dians an d spent his time trading amongthem. Eventually he married a buxomYuma woman an d became a member ofthe tribe.

A s a trader he made frequent trips withhis wife into the Apache country and

while trading among the Arivaipa Apach-es he heard rumors of a rich gold ledgewhere the Apaches obtained rich ore totrade for supplies. Yuma was eager tolearn the secret of the rich ledge and afterconsiderable persuasion induced the chiefto show it to him. In return he promiseda rifle, some ammunition, and a few trin-kets.

Soon after the agreement was reachedYuma, accompanied by the Apache chief,se t outfrom the Apache camp in a northerly direction across the hills. After travel-ing about nine miles they reached a ridgebetween the SanPedro river on the eastan d a deep rocky canyon which terminateda short distance to thewest of where theywere then standing.

Before them in a crater-like depressionwas an outcropping of rose quartz richin coarse gold. With his hunting knifeYuma broke off a handful of the brittleore that gleamed yellow in the morningsunlight. After securing samples the oucrop was carefully covered with dirt androcks until no sign of the ore remainedon the surface. Yuma was not a minerbutrealized that the quartz was very rich


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Also, he knew it was guarded by Indians

who would kill him on sight if they ever

found him there again.

After remaining in the Arivaipa coun-

try a few days Yuma went to Tucson where

he showed the ore to a man by the name

of Crittenden whom he had known as a

freighter -when he was in the army post

at Yuma. Yuma and Crittenden decided to

return to the Arivaipa country and explore

the mine and sample it more thoroughly.

Accordingly they set out from the old

pueblo of Tucson late one afternoon andafter riding all night they arrived early

the next morning at Fort Grant.

They refreshed themselves, fed and wa-

tered the horses and that afternoon rode

north down the San Pedro river. After

traveling about 10 mile.5 they made camp

in the brush along the river and •waited,

for morning. When the first rays of light!

appeared in the east they started to climb:

the steep mountainside toward the west.'

The terrain was rough and they were

forced to lead their mounts most of the

way. They soon came to the long ridge

overlooking the river and the deep box1

canyon. - . . i

They found the quartz ledge and with

a pick dug out 25 or 30 pounds of the richore. Putting the ore in a sack the^covered

the ledge again and hid the pick. Taking

a last look around to make sure no In-

dians were in the vicinity they headed their

horses down the steep rocky; trail to-

ward the west and out: into the cactus-

covered desert below. They rode all that

night and arrived in Tucson early the

next morning without having seen any

of the Apaches.

The sack of ore that they brought out

was crushed in a mortar and produced

$1,200 worth of gold. Knowing the

Apaches were on the warpath and thatit would be extremely dangerous to under-

take any development work at that time,

Yuma resumed his trading and Crittenden

continued his freighting operations be-

tween the mines and the post at Yuma on

the Colorado.

Yuma loaded his pack: mules with sup-

plies and with his Indian wife set out

across the desert toward the Papago coun-

try. That was the last ever seen of them

by their friends. There is a story among

the Papago Indians at Ajo that Yuma and

his wife were killed by a band of rene-

gade Apache Indians whom they met in

the Growler pass north of Quitobafuita.

They were buried by the Papagos and thepiles of rocks marking the graves may •still be seen just a few hundred feet "west

of the old road that leads through the

Growler pass and on down to Cipriano

wells near the border.

When Yuma and his wife failed to re-

turn to Tucson after several months, Crit-;

tenden, believing them to have met with

foul play, decided to return to the mine •

alone. Mounted on a fine horse he left

Tucson early one morning and after rid-

ing all that day and far into the night he

arrived at Fort Grant where he rested for

a few days. He revealed his plans to the

officers at the fort and as the Indians were

in a hostile mood they advised him against

making any effort to work the mine. Dis-

regarding their warnings Crittenden de-

parted for the mine. He was armed with

a repeating rifle and a Colt revolver.

When several days had passed and he

had not returned to the fort, soldiers were

sent out and found the horse and saddle

about 10 miles down the San Pedro. Thehorse was tied and was almost dead from

thirst. There was no trace of Crittenden.

Whether he reached the mine and was

killed by the Apaches, or the victim

of an accident, was never known. The fact

that an old rusty rifle was found many

years ago on the edge of the 'desert below

the mountain where the mine is said to be

located, and the finding of a rusty Colt

revolver just recently in that vicinity,

would seem to indicate that Crittenden

either lost his way while looking for the

mine or met with an accident and died

from the twin demons of the desert, heat

and thirst.

The Apaches never revealed their secretto another white man, and it is doubtful

if any living Indian today knows the lo-

cation of the lost Yuma gold ledge.

This quiz is a yardstick by which you may

determine how much progress you have

made in your acquaintance with one of the

most interesting regions in the world—the Great American Desert. The questions

touch the fields of geography, history, mineralogy, botany and the general lore of

the desert. This feature in Desert Magazine each month actually is a school of in-

struction for those who would broaden their knowledge. Twelve to 15 is a goodscore. Sixteen to 18 is superior. Perfect scores are very rare. Answers are onpagei7.

1—The road-runner never leaves the ground in flight. True False

2—Free gold is often found in quartz. True False

3—Sunset crater in Arizona is believed to have been formed by the falling of a

large meteorite. True False

4—Ultraviolet rays of the sun are believed to have caused the fossilization of

the wood in the Petrified Forest national monument. True False

5—Bill Williams was a famous steamboat captain on the Colorado river.

True False

6—The capital of Nevada is Reno. True False

7—Certain species of desert birds build their nests in cholla cactus.

True False

8—The Lost Breyfogle mine is believed to have been located in the Death Valley

region of California. True False

9—Blossom of the Palo Verde tree is blue. True False

10—Deglet Noor is the name of one of the species of dates grown in Coachella

valley of California. True False

11—Prehistoric desert Indians used the foliage of the tamarisk tree for weaving

baskets. True False

12—Largest river flowing through New Mexico is the San Juan.

True False

13—Azurite is a copper ore. True False

14—Kit Carson was a troop commander in New Mexico's "Lincoln County War."

True False

15—Rainbow Natural bridge in southern Utah may be reached only by a foot trail.

True False

16—Cathedral Gorge state park is in Nevada. True False

17—Hassayampa is the name of an Indian tribe in Arizona.

True False

18—Bright Angel creek comes into Grand canyon from the North Rim.

True False

19—Hopi Indian reservation is entirely surrounded by the Navajo reservation.

True False

20—Pauline Weaver was a famous woman stage driver. True False

O C T 1983 1 0

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I always wondered w here the name

Tonopah and Tidew ater Railroad originated

as I k new the road did not serve Tonopah,

Nevad a nor d id it g o to the Tidewater, a

somewhat rare term on the West Coast. But

the more I learned about the railroad, I

found nothing w as typical except the


During 1872, borax w as discovered at

Teel's Marsh (near Candelaria) Nev ada by

Francis Marion Smith, w ho w as later to

acquire the nickname "Borax Smith". He

successfully operated his mining ventureand became rich. Then in 1888, one of h is

competitors, William T. Coleman, sufferred

financial d ifficulties and Smith w as able

to p urchase Coleman's properties., including

the Lila C Minesite in Death Valley and

a borax mine at Borate, Cal., near Calico.

Smith w as both a smart operator and

good businessman. He realized that one of

the k ey elements to a successful mine w as

good, cheap transportation. Because the

mine at Teel's Harsh w as playing out,

operations were transferred to th e mine at

Borate. This operation had the adv antageof access to a major railroad just a few

miles away. In September 1890, all of

Smith's properties were merged into a new

company, the Pacific Coast Borax Company.

For the next 9 years, his crews mined the

Borate site. Then the minerals began to

play out. The next move w as to open the

Lila C mine in Death Valley.

This presented tremendous difficulties

and costs because there w as no mill or

railroad nereby. Not even a town. It

was almost 100 miles to the nearest rail-head at Iv anpah, Cal. To transport the

borax there, his crews constructed a

wag on road from the Lila C to Ivanpah.

But instead of using w agon trains or the

now famous 2 0 mule team outfits, Smith

planned to use steam powered traction

engines. His first load made a total of

14 miles before it broke dow n. Nothing

could mak e the steam engines work as

-Beattyy.Gold Center

t h V a l l e y J e t .



Map 1: Route of the Tonopah & Tide

water Rai road

planned. Death Valley had again defeated

man. Or had she?? At this time, Smith

realized that rail transportation was

his only choice.

Unable to interest any railroad com-

pany in building a line to serve hismine, Smith formed his own railroad.

The Tonopah and Tidewater Railroad Co.

w as incorporated on July 19, 1904.

Orignial plans called for the line

to be built north from Las Vegas, Nev.

but other factors forced a change of

plans. He decided to then link up

with the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe

RAilroad at Ludlow , California.

11 O C T 1983

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I n September of 190 5, construction

began frcm Ludlow, heading north to

Gold Center, 167 miles away. Plans

were to build this portion first;

then extend the line to Tonopah and

later to the Tidewater (San Diego).

The first section of track w as

laid on November 19, 1905. Construc-

tion crews reached Silver Lake, north

of th e present day Baker, in 1 larchof 190 6 and on to Dumont in May .

Th e railroad then sufferred a

slowdown due to difficult constructionand labor trouble. The delay cost

the line one year adn caused it to

abandon plans to extend the line to

Tonopah. It was 12 difficult and

exp ensive miles through the Armagosa

River Canyon. Large cuts were requiredalong with numerous long fills and

three major trestles. The linefinally reached Tecopa in May of 1907.

The next month Zabriskie was reached

and the line became 91 miles long.

Zabriskie was, for a wh ile, a busy

place, serving as the railhead for

construction crews and the terminus

of trains.

Th e T & T finally reached Gold

Center on October 30 , 1907. A t

app roximately 3:00 PM that afternoon,

the last spike was hanmered in. Therewas no celebration, however, as the

country was reeling fran the effects

of the Panic of 1907. Banks were

closed, mines were shutting down, and

business in general was bad.

Th e T & T quickly settled into

its daily routine. The Lila C

mine was activated and all equip-

ment frcm the Borate mine was

shipped to Death Valley. A

mill was cons rueted and the ore,

colemanite, was both crushed androasted at the mill. The renain-

ing borax crystals were then

shipp ed out on the T & T to the

Pacific Coast Borax Co's refinery

at Alameda., Cal. or to New Jersey.

A new town, Ryan, was founded

to serve the mine. This was to

be th e first of 2 geographically

different Ryans to serve thecompany's Death Valley operations.

1 2


• C U P R I T E




Map 2 : Route of the BuLlfrog-Goldfiel

Railroad operated by the T 8 T

A i w g o s aa n d

p e r r y

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In June of 190 8, the T & T expanded its operations all the •way to the

town of Goldfield, N evad a, by assuning operation of another line, the

Bullfrog-Goldfield Railroad, which w as in financial d ifficulties, something

the T & T always h ad, although minimized by its parent company, th e Pacific

Coast Borax Co. Thus a saying arose, "T & T all the way", meaning all the

w ay form Ludlow to Goldfield.

The new stations operated by the T & T are shown on Map 2. A t Goldfield,

passengers for Tonopah w ere required to transfer to trains of another line,

the Tonopah and Goldfield railroad.

The year of 1914 was an interesting one for the T & T. It lost its

Goldfield route d ue to a merger of th e Bullfrog-Goldfield Railroad and

the Las Vegas and Tonopah Railroad. The ores at the Lila C mine began to

give out. However, a new mine w as opened up 12 miles northwest of the Lila

C minesite and named the Bidd y McCarty. A new narrow gauge extension of the

Death Valley Railroad was built to the site and the entire town of Ryan

w as moved to the new site near the Bidd y McCarty. Thus Ryan at the Lila C

mine is known as "old" Ry an and "new" Ryan is near the Biddy McCarty mine.

During January of 1916 , flooding w as responsible for closing a portion of

the tracks from Crucero past Silver Lake and the founding of a new townsite.

Th e tracks at normally dry Silver Lake were so flooded as to be unusable.A temporary 7% mile detour around the flooded Silver Lake was constructed.

Shortly thereafter, the depot and w arehouse at Silver Lake were d estroyed

due to the effects of the water and the entire town w as moved to the drier

East shore and the temporary line became permanent.

The ensuing years were to be difficult ones for the T & T. Its sources

of business were usually short-lived and unreliable. In 1919, the Acme

mine closed dow n dueBelow is the self-propelled train operated by

the T & T. (Courtesy of Union Pacific RR)

to a cave in thatkilled several minersA new borax mineopened Northeast ofGerstley Station,

but closed 5 yearslater. In 1927, aspur line w as builtto Carrara to h aulmarble, but thatw as temporary. Andin 1931, the Bidd yMcCarty mine closedand the Death ValleyRailroad w as tornout.

The T & T founditself in quite a

difficult situation.It served an area offew p eople and evenfewer businesses.inthe middle of theGreat Americansion. Insteadning fulltried a self-ed railcar, picturedto the righ t.Continued on pg.32

1 3

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Looking across through theshimmering heat waves that risefrom the barren salt-encrustedsurface of Searles lake on a sum-mer day, you would concludethat it was not a very imposinglandmark to bear the name of sow o r t h y a pioneer as JohnSearles. But if you will go to the

great chemical plant that standslike a mirage on the floor of thelake bed, and listen to the engi-neers telling about the wealth ofchemicals extracted from thebrine that lies beneath the crustof salt, you will realize that it isno mean honor to have one'sname attached to such a store-house of wealth as lies beneaththe uninviting surface of this des-ert playa. John Searles passedaway 45 years ago, but the min-eral wealth he discovered isplaying a tremendous role in in-dustry and war in this year of

1942, as you will leam from OraLee Oberteuffer.


/ / IGH up in the mountains which• / / overlook Searles lake, at the head

of a tortuous, rocky trail, lie theruins of the old homestead of John \X'em-ple Searles. In the march of time over 75years have passed since that home was

built, but in the still of the desert the deepcanyon seems Co echo the chant of Chinesecoolies as they picked and shoveled awayat the rocky hillside to build terraces andwalls and dsvelop a water supply.

T ime and cloudbursts have almost ob-literated the trail, and the buildings havecrumbled away, but the mammoth fig treesand grape vines, still flourishing and bear-ing fruit, are living memorials to the cour-ag e and faith of one of the most colorfulcharacters of early desert history.

John Searles was among those intrepidpioneers who endured hardship and pri-

John W. Searles— he came to California to hunt gold, and made a fortune out of borax.

vation to reach the California gold fieldsby way of the wagon train in 1S49. De-

scending from ancestors who won renownwith the American army in the Revolu-tionary war, the courage and fearlessnesswhich he had inherited were his only pos-

sessions when he joined his brother Den-

nis at Indian creek, Shasta county, Califor-nia. The two brothers cast about for a few

years in farming and mining but eventual-ly disposed of their holdings, and in 1862

acquired and began operating miningclaims in the Slate range, just east of the

present Searles lake in central California.Their camp looked out on a vast dry lakeof what was thought at that time to be saltand carbonate of soda.

O ne day Searles, confiding in no one,

gathered samples of crystals from the bed

of the lake and took them to San Franciscofor analysis. At first he was told they con-

tained borax. But after more trips to San

Francisco and more analyses had beenmade, he was told that they contained not

a single trace of borax. Disappointed, he

returned to the desert where he devotedthe next few years to working his mineand developing his homestead in the


One day in 1S73 a man drifted into the

Searles mining camp with some samplesfrom a new borax discovery in Nevada.Realizing that they were the same type of

crystals as the samples he had previouslytaken to San Francisco, Searles' incerest in

his own discovery wasaroused once more.With a pack outfit he went to the southend of the lake and located 640 acres.

O C T 1983 14

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Later this acreage was increased to over2,000.

Then he made another tr ip to San Fran-cisco with samples. When he was toldagain that his crystals contain no borax hebecame suspicious. W h en h e left San Fran-cisco for Los Angeles he was followed, butwhile in Los Angeles he formed a part-nership with Charles Grassard, Eben M.Skill ings and his brother Dennis. Whilethe other three gathered simple equipmentfor starting operations, Searles went in anopposite direction, camping and prospect-ing, st i l l being followed. When he wasable finally to elude his followers hejoined his partners at the claims.

When word readied the outside worldthat there was borax in Searles lake, hordesof men came to stake out claims. Claimjumping and murder knew no law on thatfrontier but in time most of the claimantsstarved out and the claims were aban-doned. One or two small organizations at-tempted to produce the borax as a payingindustry but for one reason or anotherfaded out of the picture.

With crude equipment Searles ' l i t t leband collected borax in cowhide baskets

The highly chem icalized brine from beneath the dry Surface

of Searles lake has created a town of 2500 people at Trona.

and carried it to a large boiling pan whereit was boiled for 36 hours. The solutionwas then run into vats so that the crystalscould form on the sides. After drying itwas put into 70-pound bags, loaded into20-muIe-team wagons and hauled to SanPedro, California, where it was transport-ed by water to San Francisco. Thus theborax industry on the now famous Searleslake was born. Those wagons, built andoperated for Searles by Oso Viejo, who, atthe time of this writing is still living inLos Angeles, were the first 20-muIe-tearn

borax wagons ever put in operation. Itwas one of the Searles wagons that SaltyBill Parkinson, Searles' foreman, laterdrove across country for exhibition at theSt. Louis exposition in 1904.

On Jan uary 1, 1 873, Searles marriedMary Covington in Los Angeles, Califor-nia. On February 27, 1874, a son, Dennis,was born to them. But those were difficultyears for the city-bred girl. Never inuredto the rigors of' desert pionee ring, hermind wandered in the maze of primitive


hardships and lost its way. Though de-prived of her help and companionship hecontinued, with the aid of a faithful oldChinese cook, to keep his small son withhim and carry on his enterprises.

In the operation of his borax worksSearlcs had accumulated considerable real,and personal property—land, buildings,wagons, mules, horses and other equip-ment. On one occasion he had gone withthe mule team shipment to San Pedro,'leaving Dennis, then four years old, in thecare of the Chinese cook. A few days afterthe wagon train had left camp there sud-denly appeared in the distance, like aplague of locusts, a band of hostile Indi-ans. Sensing the danger the old Chinamanquickly gathered some food and fled withDennis into a nearby canyon in the moun-tains. The Indians dosed in on the camp,burned everything that would burn, anddrove the stock over the Slate range intothe Panamint valley.

Sand storms in all their deadly fury areas nothing compared with the anger of


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John Searles when he returned and beheldthe ruins of all that he possessed. As soonas the Chinaman and Dennis reappearedhe assembled the team, took the same driv-ers, and started back for San Pedro, stop-ping enroute to leave his two passengersin friendly hands in San Bernardino. AtSan Pedro they bought mules, old armysaddles and repeating rifles, hired a smallband of longshoremen from the docks,and returned to the desert to track dov/n

the Indians.

Searles caught up with them in the foot-hills of the Panamint mountains where abloody battle ensued. The Indians werefighting with bows and arrows, and, as oneof the survivors told later, they did notfear the white men, thinking that the ar-rows would mow them down while rifleswere being reloaded. Many Indians werekilled and wounded and the remainderfled in panic, leaving the livestock behind.Searles and his men drove the stock back:into Searles lake basin where he began theheart-breaking task of rebuilding theborax works.

In later years the faithful Chinese serv-ant enjoyed an annuity which had been es-tablished by Searles. He died in San Fran-cisco's Chinatown 10 years after Searles

had passed on to his own reward. The sonDennis later attended Stanford universitywhere he graduated in its first class withHerbert Hoover. He died in San Fran-cisco November 25, 1916.

In the rebuilding of the borax plant acorporation was formed under the nameof the San Bernardino Borax Miningcompany. About 60 men were employed.The borax was still hauled out by 20-mule-.team wagons to Mojave, the then nearestrailway station, where it was shipped byrail to San Francisco. With each loadworth $4,000, and a load going out everyfour days, the business produced a tre-mendous revenue, but rival concerns paidSearles and his associates such a handsomesum of money to discontinue operationthat they dosed down their plant in 1895-

At the time of the operation of Searles'plant geologists considered the surface de-posit to be the largest supply of naturalborax in the world. None of them, noteven John Searles himself, dreamed thatunder the h£.rd white surface of the lakewas a subterranean brine and a vast stra-

tum of crystals containing thousands oftimes more borax than was exposed onthe surface, as well as many other salts andchemicals which were later to take their

phcc in the world of science, industry, ag-riculture and national defense.

When it was discovered that the under-ground lake also carried a vast potash con-tent, the President of the United States, bya proclamation, withdrew Searles lake intoa potash reserve. Congress shortly there-after passed a leasing bill authorizing thedepartment of the interior to lease the de-posits of potash and other minerals in the

. lake, preventin g private parties thence-

forth from procuring it outright. This bill,however, did not disturb those claimswhich already had been patented, includ-ing the holdings of the San BernardinoBorax Mining company as well as thoseof the California Trona company, a sub-sidiary of Goldfields, Ltd.

In 1908 the California Trona companyundertook to manufacture chemicals fromthe brine, but, for various reasons, foundthe going too tough and went into thehand s of a receiver. Th e company lay prac-tically dormant u ntil 1913, when it againmade the same attempt under the nameAmerican Trona corporation.

Between 1913 and 1916 various ex-perimental processes were developed,tests were made, plants were built at enor-mous expense and promptly abandoned.

'Night pictures of the American Potash and Chem ical plant at Trona, California,

OCT 1983 1 6

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History docs not record whether those try-ing years proved to be a death struggle forthe processes previously used or laborpains of the new Trona which was aboutto be born, but finally, in 1916, a plant toproduce potash and borax by what wasknown as the Grimwood process was com-pleted and placed in operation.

Ten wells, about 85 feet deep, weredrilled through the salt crust and into thebrine. A pumping plant was installed and

a pipeline constructed to carry the liquidto the plant where the chemicals were ex-tracted by means of evaporation. Thisplant was the real beginning of the pres-ent Trona. Production of salts from thebrine by the American Trona company,and its successor, the American Potash andChemical corporation, has been continu-ous since that time.

The variety of the uses for Trona prod-vets seems to be as unlimited as the uni-verse. The coarse grade of potash is usedchiefly in fertilizers. The finer grade isused in the manufacture of soaps, textiles,matches, medicines, dyes, glass, photo-

graphic preparations, and many otherth ings.

One grade of borax finds its way intoheat-resisting glasses, ordinary bottleglass, and vitreous or porcelain enamels,glazes for ceramic ware, leather, paper,adhesives and textiles. It is used as a sol-vent for casein, as a flux in th e brazing andwelding of metals, to retard the decay ofcitrus fruits, and to prevent the growth ofcertain fungi which cause sap stain in num-erous types of lumber.

Boric acid (technical) is used in themanufacture of vitreous enamels, heat-resisting glass and glazes for ceramic

ware. It is also used in electro-plating andthe manufacture of electrolytic condensers.More highly refined boric acid goes intovarious pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.

Soda ash is probably the most versatileof all the products obtained from theSearles lake brine. It becomes baking soda,drugs, dye-stuffs, caustic soda, and othersalts containing sodium as the base. Itsoftens water, helps in the refining oflubricating oils, is an ingredient in woodpreservatives and is a useful elemen t in themanufacture of paper.

Salt cake (sodium sulphate) is largely

used in the manufacture of kraft paper,plate and window glass, dyes, chemicals,tanning, cattle dopes and pharmaceuticalproducts.

The youngest brain-children of the re-search department are the recovery of lith-ium from the process foams and slimeswhich formerly were wasted and the re-covery of bromine and alkali bromidesfrom th e potash. Heretofore lithium hasbeen obtained by mine production of min-erals. As prepared at Trona it constitutesthe highest grade lithium ore yet known.

In addition to a great many medicinal useslithium chloride is used in air-condition-ing units for de-humidifying, in metal-lurgy for copper refining, in the red fireof fireworks, and for many chemical ex-periments. Bromine and the bromides arelargely used in modern industrial arts. Itis a vital constituent of Ethyl gasoline aswell as a fumigant for preventing weevilsand damage to stored supplies of grain.The bromides are used also in the photo-graphic industry. In a national emergencythe photographer and his supplies as wellas the Ethyl gasoline used in aeroplanesbecome of utmost importance.

And the end is not yet! The axiom inthe old riddle "the more you take, themore you leave" must have been said ofthe brine in Searles lake, for, in spite ofthe enormous amount pumped out eachday, scientists claim that it constantly isbeing replaced and that there is no indica-tion that the supply will be diminished forat least 100 years. And so, judging the fu-ture by the past, who can say what addi-tional wonders for the benefit of all man-kind are still lurking in that brine?

The village of Trona resembles, to someextent, an army post. Where once therewas a pitiful little handful of rude cabinson the edge of the salt beds there are nowhundreds of modern comfortable homeson well-laid-out streets. There is a fully-equipped grade and high school, a publiclibrary, a modern up-to-the-minute hospi-tal with two doctors, a corps of nurses anda dentist; a moving picture theater, an 18-hole golf course, and a completely-equippecl trapshoo.ting ground. It alsoboasts an airport with hangars for a num-ber of privately owned planes, as well asone of the finest open-air swimming pools

in the West.

A large and commodious retail storecarries food, dry goods and drugs. In theearly mining days of John Searles it wasnecessary for him to drive his mule teamover 100 miles to Tehachapi for his sup-plies and feed for his stock. Later he ran asmall store of his own for the benefit ofthe employes in his borax works. The ruinsof that little store building are still stand-ing on the shore of the lake.

In contrast to the 20-mule-team wagonswhich groaned and creaked their wayacross the desert in the early days of John

Searles, the American Potash and Chemi-cal corporation now owns and operatesits own railroad between Trona andSearles station, a distance of 31 miles,where it connects with the Southern Paci-fic railway. Two huge engines, piloting anaverage of 35 cars, now puff out of Tronaevery day starting about 1,300 tons ofproducts on their way to every corner ofthe globe.

There are now 19 wells operating onthe lake and an average of 2,700,000 gal-

1 7

Ions of brine flow through pipelines intothe plant every 24 hours. From this brineapproximately 1,260 tons of chemicals areextracted. To carry on this herculeanchore, with loading and shipping, requiresabout 1,250 employes, who, with theirfamilies, constitute the entire populationof Trona, numbering about 2,500.

Wi th Trona produ cts taking such an im-portant place in the scientific and indus-trial world, it is not surprising that the

interesting little city has gathered unto herbosom a most unusual class of people. Itboasts some of the finest chemical andengineering brains in the country.

Houses, administration buildings, storebuildings and dormitories for single menand women are all air-cooled—almost sin-fully comfortable in the hottest summerweather. It's a far cry back to those pio-neering days when there was no relieffrom the dancing, baking heat waves ofthe lake basin.

John Wemple Searles, son of Georgeand Helen Wemple Searles, was born atTribes Hill , Montgomery county, NewYork, on November 16, 1828. Thoughthe glittering, shimmering borax crystalsin the bed of the lake which now bears hisname were not the yellow gold which heexpected to find at the end of the coveredwagon trail, they made him a rich manand left a legacy of benefits and blessingsto be enjoyed by the whole world forgenerations to come.

History records that in his early pio-neering days, while on a deer-hunting ex-pedition into the mountains of Kern coun-ty, Searles had a gruelling, breath-takingfight with a huge grizzly bear which lefthis shoulder and one side of his face per-manently mangled. Companions on thehunt managed to get him to Los Angeleswhere surgeons miraculously saved hislife. Grim reminders of the incident todayare a bottle containing 21 pieces of brokenbone and teeth and an old Spencer riflewith many bear-teeth dents in it. Perhapsonly the kind of pluck and courage whichsaw him through that encounter couldhave fought off claim jumpers andmarauding Indians in his early borax daysand establish for posterity one of the mostimportant industries in America today.

John Searles died on October 7, 1897,

and his body lies in the purple shadows ofthe little cemetery at St. Helena, Califor-nia. But to Watch the sun sink behind thehills at Trona and the short twilight fadeinto night, with the silhouette of the hugeindustrial giant outlined in black againstthe desert sky—then suddenly a millionelectric lights rivaling the long jaggedpoints of the stars—one feels that his spirithas come back that the desert m ay claim itsown; that here indeed death has beenswallowed up in victory.


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r—n 1 ——

Probable scene near Kanab, Utah, about 60 million years ago when dinosaurs were a common feature of the landscape. Plantsshown in drawings reconstructed from "The Upper Triassic Flora of Arizona," by Lyman H. Daugherty.

ike Qlant5 on KanabWhen Ray Alf went hunting in southwestern Utah, he did not have to

wait for open season. He was on the trail of giants; that roamed the land60 million years ago. And when he came back to Claremont he broughtonly the footprints of the giants—but from these footprints, scientists havebeen able to reconstruct the probable appearance and habits of thesedragon like monsters who disappeared from the earth about 25 millionyears ago. Here are some facts, theories and myths about dinosaurs, wholeft their tracks in the red mud of Utah and Arizona before the Southwestbecame a desert land.


Drawings by the author

rH IS is a story about giants thatstalked across the Utah mud-flatsat least 60 million years ago when

the waves of the Pacific still beat againstthe shores of Arizona. California wasburied deep beneath, the sea. The Rockiesha d not yet been upheaved. And wherethe Colorado river has since cut the terrificgorge of Grand Canyon, quietly meander-ing streams flowed through a level flood-plain.

It was a spring morning four years ago

when Ray Alf, geologist of Claremont andinstructor at the Webb School for Boys,was on a geological excursion near Kanab,

Utah . The day had started all wrong. Inthe first place, he had left without hammerand knapsack. In the second place, he had

only a general idea as to what he mightexpect to find and where to find it. Thiscombination generally means that you willwind up in good collecting territory with-out means of removing or transportingyour choice specimens.

This was famous dinosaur country, or

rather, dinosaur track country. At Kanab,the garage man had reported plentifultracks of all sizes in the sandstone strataof the nearby canyons and furnished direc-tions to find them. A hammer and chisel

were donated by a cooperative stone cutterof Kanab.

Now well equipped, Ray soon arrivedon a ledge 150 feet up the canyon wall.

There he gazed fascinated at the three-toedtracks of a giant whose birdlike foot had

a total length of 16 inches and whosestride was more than eight feet. Ray

finally succeeded in chopping out a 75-

pound slab with its footprint intact fromth e red,calcareous sandstone of the canyon.After several narrow escapes from lossand breakage including near-engulfmentin the quicksand of the wash, the slab withseveral others finally came to a safe harborin the Webb School museum where theystand, silent witnesses to events that tookplace in Arizona and Utah long ago.

The red track-bearing sandstone with

shale, conglomerate and other rocks makesup the strata of the Chinle formation, sedi-mentary deposits of the Triassic age whichunderlie a vast area in Arizona, Utah and

part of New Mexico. The formation takesits name from the Chinle valley of north-eastern Arizona where the deposit is 1182

feet thick. Chinle itself (prono unced Chin-Lee) is a Navajo word meaning "at the

mouth 6f the canyon."

To date, a few bones from Kaiparowitspeak and some scraps from New Mexicoare the only instances of actual dinosaurremains which have been recovered fromthe Chinle. Aside from these two cases the

O C T 1983 18

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Left— Three-toed dinosaur footprint from Trias sic formation, Utah. T otal length of track, \6 inches. Right— Another dinosaurtrack from Triassic of Utah. This appa rently is track of smaller an imal of different species. Photos by Ray Alf, Claremo nt, Calif.

sole record of the dense dinosaur popu-lation that once lived in and aroundKanab is preserved in these ancient foot-prints left in the old muds and sand barsnow hardened into rock.

This dinosaur track locality at Kanab isnot the only place where a vast concourseof reptilian giants had left their footprints.There was something l ike i t in the cele-brated dinosaur localities of the Connecti-cut valley, another formation which, likethe Chinle, was a depositof the Triassic age. Hereagain the scarcity of bonescaused species after spe-cies (93 in all ) to beknown only by the tracksthe animals left in the

mud of swamps and onthe sandy banks of Trias-sic rivers. Fortunately anexpert sometimes can tel la great deal about an an-imal from its tracks alone.

Since paleontologistsknow in much detail thegeneral anatomy and pro-portions of the many spe-cies of dinosaurs, examin-ation of a set of footprintsfurnishes an indication asto the size of the beast that

made them. In the case of the tracks thatRay Alf found we can say that the animalwas large, probably 20 feet high, and thati t walked l ike a man. When i t made thetracks it: was in no hu rry for th e tracks aresharp and show that he set his feet downand l if ted them up without splashing themud which was a tr if le too wet for idealcasting and wou ld hav e splattered if he hadbeen in a rush.

The Kanab tracks are those of many

In 1657 folks thought one type of dragon looked like this. Dr. JohnJohnso n, in his "Historia Anim alinm" says this specimen w as capturedin the fields of Bologna, and calls it a wingless, two-legged dragon.

different species of dinosaurs and veryclosely resemble the footprints from Con-necticut valley where the track of onegiant named Eubrontes divaricatus isalmost a duplicate of the 16-inch trackfrom Kanab. All the evidence indicatesthat these dinosaurs were related speciesand ranged generally throughout NorthAmerica and lived in the same type of di-mate and surroundings.

The Triassic was one of the most inter-esting intervals in theearth's history. It was atime of reorganizationafter the great depressionof the Permian periodwhen for at least 15,000,-000 years, hard times

were general throughoutthe whole earth. Ancientand outmoded animalsand plants were passingout of the picture to giveplace to newer but stillfantastic types in a stateof evolution. Some as-pects of the late Triassicof Arizona and Utah re-quire considerable effortof the imagination tovisualize.

For instance, one sec-


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tion of the Pacific coast line of the ancientNorth American land-mass extended n orthand south for a distance of 250 miles ormore almost in, exactly the same meridianas the western Utah border and was aboutequally divided between the two states. Be-ginning here and extending eastward, thepart of the land in which we arc most inter-ested, stretched away for a thousand milesin the shape of a sock with the bottom ofthe heel just at the coast line. Th e foot ex-

tended to the north with the toe in centralWyoming, while the leg reached all theway to central Texas .

For decades geologists have been of theopinion that this region was either desertor semi-desert because typical red sedi-ments, generally supposed to indicate ex-cessive aridity, occur everywhere. T he sandand silt of these red rocks are soil trans-ported by streams from the erosion of theancestral Rockies and the mountains ofCascadia, an obliterated land-mass in thewest. Much clay from the weathering ofash from either local or remote volcanoesis another typical feature of the region.

Some of the particles in these old rocksare aeolian sand and the accepted theorywas that these materials had accumulatedon the bottom of a shallow sea of imm enseextent and surrounded by parched andarid shores. Recent discoveries, however,made it necessary for geologists to modifysome of their views.

In 1941, the paleobotanist, Lyman H.Daugherty, who then was making exten-sive investigations of the Triassic depositsof northern Arizona as part of the programbeing carried out by the Carnegie institu-tion of Wash ington, D . C , identified 38species of plants some of which were of

types that precluded the possibility of apermanently desert habitat. AlthoughDaugherty's researches were on materialfrom the Petrified Forest national monu-ment about 20 miles east of Ho lbrook, A ri-zona, and all of 220 miles southeast of Ka-nab, much of the petrified wood is from thesame species of trees in the two localities.So it is reasonable to suppose that theflora was the same in the interveningterritory.

That the Kanab locality was not desertis shown conclusively not only by theabundance of fossil plants but by thegreat size of some of the petrified trees, onefrom Utah being twelve and a half feetin diameter and 185 feet long. It is gen-erally accepted that much of the regionwas only slightly above sea-level and

Western half of United States duringLate Triassic Period whe n waves ofthe Pacific beat against shores of Ari-zona, and the red Cbinle geologicalformation was dominant in U tah,northern Arizona and Neiv Mexico.Map adapted from Piersson andScauchert, "Textbook of Geology."

spread out in vast flood-plains traversedby slow streams carrying much driftwood.The battered condition of many of thepetrified logs shows that they have comefrom afar. Reeds and rushes grew in thickbrakes in marshy places.

Even swamps were a common featureof the landscape. This is shown by thepresence of fossil trees with their trunksswollen at the base like those of the baldcypress of Louisiana. On slightly higherground curious cycad-like trees and plantswith broad, strap-like leaves—Yuccites(n o relation to our yuccas), grew frond tobranch with conifers and the forerunnersof our modern hardwood trees. One ofthe most abundant conifers was a doserelative of our star-pine frequently seenin parks.

The wonder of trees and logs changedto stone naturally has left a deep impres-sion on the legends of the Indians who"saw them scattered over the waste and feltthat there must be some supernaturalexplanation. To the Navajo they areyeitsobitsin or the bones of Yeitso, a mon-ster slain by the Sun in a great battle. Thescattered and broken bones of Yeitso andhis congealed blood—the lava-flows—areall tha t remain to tell the tale of the titanicstruggle. The Pahutes explain the logs asbeing the broken weapons of the GreatWolf god, Shinarav.

The triassic climate throughout the

' legion typified by the Chinle was evidentlyone of sharply divided rainy and dryseasons. For months the rainfall would bevery great, then would come a season ofabsolute drought and it is believed prob-able that it was during the long, hot, drySpells that the desert aspect originated.The temperature was mild, possiblytropical.

This Triassic world, which ushered inthe Mesozoic or Middle Ages of the earth'shistory, supported an animal populationStranger than any that lived before orsince. It was the Reptile Age just begin-ning, the reign of the dinosaurs (terriblelizards). The creation of these fantasticbeasts was not, as is sometimes supposed,one of Nature's experimental failures.Actually, the dinosaurs were a great suc-cess. For 55,000,000 years these almostbrainless, moronic animal thugs dominatedthe entire earth as Lords of Creation.

Knowledge of the different species ofdinosaur and their anatomy is rather newand is being constantly enlarged by new

finds and continual research. As recentlyas 1802 some of the tracks in the Connec-ticut valley were explained by the localinhabitants as the tracks of Noah's raven.They looked like gigantic bird tracks andwere so accepted. Our grandfathers hadnot the slightest inkling that such animalsas dinosaurs ever existed. The dragon mythappears to have had nothing whatever to

OCT 19832 0

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do with finds of the bones of these actualdragons because these myths developedin parts of the earth where dinosaur re-mains rarely are found. Where such afoundation might be expected, as in China,the dragon was no ordinary animal but a

supernatural being connected with earth,air, fire or water. Despite the fact that theancients had no data to go by and appar-ently created their dragons from thin air,they sometimes did a fairly decent job inunknowingly inventing an imaginary dino-saur. The reproduction shown is froman old "History of Animals" publishedin 1657 and except for the fact that itneeds another pair of legs and that theneck and tail are a trifle "arty" it almostcould qualify as a picture of Anchisaurus,one of the smaller carnivorous dinosaurs.

It was not until 1824 that any attemptwas made to explain in a scientific way

the meaning of fossil dinosaur bones. Thiswas from an account of a find in theJurassic deposits of southern England. Thequestion remained indefinite howeveruntil 1841 when Richard Owen, the an-atomist, pointed to the fact that the bones

were those of a lizard-like animal and- henamed the thing a "dinosaur."

It is easy to acquire the wrong impres-sion of dinosaurs . We are likely to think ofthem as being simply magnified lizards,but some were little fellows less than afoot long from nose to the tip of the tail.Their bones show that they were allied tothree other groups—the birds, the croco-diles and a curious clan, the Rhyncho-cephalia, a group which now has but asingle living representative, the Sphen-odon, or tua-tara of New Zealand. Thislow-grade, lizard-like reptile has a pee-weebrain. In specimens 20 inches long the



The 130 r so residents of Red Mountain, Cal.,a former silver mining town on the Mojave Desertabout 2 miles south of Johannesburg on Highway395 may be landless.

According to th eBIM, they are squatters, living

in houses they ow n, but on federally owned land d ueto a tangle of red tape regarding th eruins of th eKelly Mine. Scmewhere along the way, township paperswere not filed which means th e federal governmentstill owns th e land they liveon.

Upon trying to purchase their land from th egovernment, which some residents claim they w ere toldthey could do, prospective p urchasers were informedthat th e land could not e sold because of a possibleconflict over th e ownership of th e old ining claims.If th e claims were boug ht and roven to be aluable,then under th e (mining) law, th e claimholders g ettitle to th e land, both underground and the surface,

where th e esidents homes are built.Similar situations have occurred, such as one in

Angels Camp on the Mother Lode and they have beensatisfactorily resolved. Th e townspeople of RedMountain are trying to remedy their problem with aresolve typical of the residents of this area.

O C T 1983

brain is smaller than a pea. This animalalso has a third eye on top of its head, thepineal eye, which is a very primitive char-acteristic also shown by some lizards in-cluding the common horned toad. But inthe horned toad's case the eye is marked

by a tiny opaque scale while in tua-tara thepineal eye is well developed and said to besensitive to temperature changes. Somedinosaurs, the Plateosaurs, show evidenceof having had a pfneal eye on top of thehead. Like tua-tara the dinosauran mentalequipment was slight. The Brontosaur wassometimes 65 feet long and weighed closeto 40 tons yet the brain responsible forthe action of this great mass of lizard fleshtipped the scales at two pou nds!

From the study of the teeth and jaws,anatomists know that there were bothherbivorous and carnivorous types of dino-saurs. Some with spoon-shaped snouts ate

the vegetation of the ancient swamps.Others had batteries of teeth with serratededges set edgewise in the jaw to shear likethe blades of scissors. These were the typi-cal flesh eaters, living engines of destruc-tion like Tyrannosaurus rex (King of theTyrant lizards). Many species laid eggslike those found in Mongolia with the un-hatched baby dinosaur inside. We alsoknow something about the skin that cov-ered these dumb reptiles. Casts of thehide have been recovered in a number offinds. This was thin like most snake skinbut not covered with scales. Instead, ithad a mosaic of tubercles like the skin ofthe gila monster.

What wiped out the dinosaurs? No-body knows for certain but there aresome attractive theories. The facts are thatfor a period three times the length of themammalian domination of the earth, thereptiles flourished exceedingly, and thensuddenly at the close of the Mesozoic,about 25,000,000 years ago, the last dino-saur died. Possibly this extinction was dueto changing of the earth's climate fromwarm to cool and actually cold. Reptiles,with their cold blood and lack of any pro-tective covering such as hair or feathersto cut down heat lost through radiationcould not stand the rigors of even a mod-

erate winter. With the onset of cold atorpor would settle down on the entiredinosaur race. This coupled with a slowmind challenged by the problems of chang-ing environment would have been toomuch. They couldn't think fast enough tocarry on. However, on the w arm day of theTriassic when the unhurried giant left histrack in the sandy mud at Kanab, suchmisfortunes were still a long way in thedim future.


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M i le s t o ne s , M a g i c , M y t h s , and i s c e l l an e o u s o f t he G r e a t A m e r i c a n D e se r t


The .Amazon Jungle, Brazil. A gold nuggetweighing 80 pounds was found in a goldfield in the Naked Mountains. Thisdiscovery followed a . 72.6 pound nuggetdiscovered in the same area on March 4,

1 9 8 3 . Officials estimated its valueat $385,000.00.


Yerington, Nevada - Pacific SilverCorporation announced plans to constructa 30 0 Ton per day flotation and leachingfacility at its newly developed Buckskinm i n e . A 1500 foot long inclined shaftwill be sunk to help transport the oreto the surface. The company estimatesthere is 40,00 0,00 0 of ore at the site.


Washington DC - the US Supreme Courtruled that farmers in the NewlandsReclamation Project are entitled towater from the Carson River. Thisdecision settles a 58 year old disputein which the Indians claimed that theirrights were prior and superior to thoseof the ranchers. The water flows toPyramid Lake and provides a spawninggrounds for the Lahontan cutthroat troutand the cui-ui. The Federal Governmentrepresented the Indians, despite the

tribes' ishes to represent itself.


Cerrillos, New Mexico - Three hoodedbandits broke into the Gold Fields Mineproperty near here on June 30, 1983. Theyreportedly stole what could turn out tobe $500,00 0 of gold. It was not all thatsimple, however, the gold is treated w ithCyanide, contact with which can cause death.

22 •


Secretary of the Interior James Watthas announced that $1,000,000 has beenallocated to initiate construction onthe AK-Chin Indian Cccirunity Project.The project is located on the Maricopa

AK^Chin Reservation in Pinal County,about 30 miles south of Phoenix, A r i z .The project will repair irrigation .facilities for 5000 acres and newfacilities for over 320 0 acres.Completion of this project will take 3years and enable the AK-Chin IndianCommunity to use part of the 85000 acrefeet of water guaranteed it annually bya 1978 act. That act was passed tostabilize the agricultural economy ofthe AK-Chin connunity, threatened by thedepletion of ground water on which itdepended, by providing a permanent watersource for the reservation.

SUTRO TUNNEL M Y REOPENDAYTON, Nevada - The historic SutroTunnel wh ich runs frcm near here toVirginia City may be back in use if aCanadian Company's plans materialize.The company, Rea Gold Corporation ofVancouvere British Columbia, announcedthat it has signed a letter of intent topurchase 40 0 acres of mineral rights frcmthe Constock Tunnel and Drainage Companyof Carson City, owner of the Sutro Tunnel.

When originally constructed, the Sutrotunnel was granted mineral rights to2000 feet on either side of the tunnelby the mining companies on the CanstockL o d e . This area has not been mined andrumor has it that there are several veinextensions on tunnel property. Not allis easy, however. Access to the tunnelis blocked by several cave-ins and thesemust be cleared and the tunnel inspectedbefore use can begin. In an upcoming issuof DESERT, we will feature a story on thehistory of the tunnel & its construction.

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C a l e n d a r of W e s t e r n E v e n t s

OCTOBER 22 & 23, LQDI GEM & MIN ERAL SHCWHale Park Building,209 Locust Street,L o d i , Calif. Hours 10:0 0 A M - 5: 00 IM. .

OCTOBER 26-NOVEMBER 6, ARI ZONA STATE FAIRMcDowell Road & 19th Avenue,Phoenix, Arizona,Features prize winning livestock,agricultural exh ibits, minerals, Midwayand rides, Entertainment.

Admission charged.


NOVEMBER 5 & 6, GEM & EARTH SCIENCE SHOWSanta Barbara County Fair Grounds,Stowell & Thomberg Streets,Santa Maria, Calif.,

Mineral displays, demonstrations,Chicken Barbeque, dealers.Ad mission Free.

NOVEMBER 12 - SAN DIEGO FEAST DAYJemez and Tesuque Pueblos,Albuquerque, New Mexico,Ceremonial dances, Trade Fair.

NOVEMBER 12 & 13 CATTLE CALL RODEOCattle Call Arena,

Brawley, Calif.,Western Parade Saturday 10: 00 A M( D o w n t o w n ) , Rodeo both days, PitBeef Barbeque, Western dancesSaturday nig ht, Rodeo features, steerwrestling, calf roping, barebackriding, saddle bronc riding, bullriding, wcnen's barrel race, amateur-contests and wild horse race.

Tickets - (619) 344-52 06, Admission$5.00 and $ 7 . 0 0 .

NOVEMBER 18 - 20 GEM AND MIN ERAL SHOWMineralogical Society of Ariz ona,Youth Center Building, ArizonaState Fairgrounds, 19th Av enue andMcDowell, Phoenix, Arizona,Hours 10: 00 A M till 6:00 PM, dealers,special exhibits, demonstrations,lectures and swapping.

JANUARY 1 4 - 1 5 , 1984 "GEMBOREE 84"Tule Gem and Mineral Society,

Veterans Memorial Building, 32 4 NorthKaweak Street, Exeter, Calif.,Exhibits, dealers, demonstrations,Admission Free.

FEBRUARY 9 - 12 GEM AND MI NERAL SHOWTucson Carmunity Center, 260 SouthChurch, Tucson, Arizona, Hours 10: 00AM - 8:00 PM, Sunday to 5:00 PM,Exhibits, programs, Annual meeting ofc l u b s , dealers. Large Show.Admission $ 1 . 5 0 .

FEBRUARY 16 - 18 SCOTTSDALE GEM ANDMINERAL SHOW, Camelview Plaza,Camelback Road and 70th Street,Scottsdale, Arizona,Exhibits, dealers.

MARCH 3 - 4 GEMS AND MINERAL SHOWMonrovia Rockhounds, Masonic Temple,204 West Foothill Boulevard,Monrovia, Calif.,Displays, lectures, dealers,Free Admission.

MARCH 17 - 18 RIVER GEMBOREE, SilveryColorado River Rock Club, Junior HighSchool Building, Hancock Road atLakeside, Bullhead City, Arizona,Dealers, demonstrations, displays,Free Admission.

O C T 1983

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Bladder BuiltThe desert region h as h ad more rainfall than nor-m a l during the fall an d winter, and wh ile other lac-tors such as freezing temperatures or blisteringwinds may interfere, there is the promise of a color-ful horizon when the wildflower season comes inFebruary and March and April. In order thatreaders may extend their acquaintance with theflowering shrubs of the arid region. Desert Maga-zine this month r e sumes the series of stories writtenby Mary Beal about the more common botanicalspecies.


/ ? N W ID EL Y scat tered areas of the Mojave and Colorado\J deserts the traveler frequently is attracted by a greyish

blue-green bush alive with clusters of bright yellow blos-soms, quite unlike the members of the sunflower family every-where in evidence. It is a woody, rounded shrub a few feet ormore high.

If you stop for a closer acquaintance you'll find it to be oneof the heavy-scented Caper family. Botanists have named itIsomeris arborea but it is commonly known as Bladder Bush,Bladder-pod or Butro Fat .

Some of its relatives are called Stink-weed and Skunkweedand our shrub could well be given such a nickname. Its herbageis truly as mal-odorous as the scent of a skunk. Yo u w onder howthe handsome golden flowers can spring so buoyantly fromsuch an ill-smelling source.

Usually it is 2 to 4 feet high but sometimes in favorable spotsit attains a height of 6 or 8 feet. It thrives best in shallow washes

nr.T 1983

and dry gullies, which catch the run-off of rain water from thehills and often produce an array of lusty six-footers. Thesewashes make a delightful display of gay color whenever amplemoisture inspires the Bladder Bush to put forth blossoms. It

needs little encouragement, having the pleasing habit of burst-ing into bloom at any season of the year the rain gods see fitto send generous showers.

The new branches of the season are green but stiff, lightlyveiled with a close covering of very fine white hairs. T hesmooth leathery leaves are palmately divided into 3 narrow,bristle-tipped leaflets an inch or more long, inclined to fold in-ward.

The showy flowers are nearly an inch across, growing indense bracted racemes at the end of the branchlets. The broadcalyx has 4 pointed lobes, the corolla 4 golden petals, and the6 yellow stamens are long out-stretched. The ovary protrudesconspicuously, borne at the end of a long stalk, so that it isstrikingly prominent even in the newly opened flower, form-ing a sizeable pod before the corolla withers, a leathery, bal-looning p od resem bling a very obese pea-pod, lV i to 2Vi inches

long.A hungry human might be attracted to the fruiting Bladder

Bush as a source of nourishment but one nibble would beenough to turn thumbs down on the very bitter little peas intheir edible-appearing fat pods. The offensive odor and tasteof the good-looking foliage would be likewise repellent.Browsing burros are less sensitive and may indeed relish andwax fat upon the herbage and pods of the Isomeris, at leastsufficiently to account for the common name Burro Fat.

Isomeris arborea has a variety, globosa, with pods almostspherical, which dips into the western Mojave desert from thecoast ranges. Another variety, angustata, favors the WesternColorado desert, extending north through the Mojave desertto the Tehachapi mountains. Its pods are only slightly inflat-ed, tapering at both ends.


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Man sitting undertree dead. Wassearching for horse.

Year mark.

Mare had twin colts.

Rattlesnakekilled Pima.

Measles killedmany Indians.

Pima killed injail from train.

First wagons used.

Wife of headchief died.

Pi mas invited towhite feast atTempe.

Government issuedbarbed wire.

Mexican killeda Pima Indian.

Year mark.

Woman killedby lightning.

Cow gored awoman to death.

Railroad built.

Horse race.

Sketches copied from the Calendarstick as Juan Samuel told his story to

the author.

For centuries the Pima Indians have lived in the valleys of the Saltriver and the Gila. T hey w er e living there at the first coming of the S pan-iards, always at war with marauding Apaches; always fighting with theelements for a livelihood and always at peace with the white race thatcrowded into their country. The Pima domain is surrounded by toweringmountains rising abruptly from the Arizona desert and fencing the Indi-ans into their lowland where saguaros stand sentinel and cholla cactusglistens in the burning sun w hich beats dow n on the land .

But throughout the centuries the Pimas have wrested their food and

clothing irom their desert home, asking nothing of red or white neighborexcept to be left unmolested. Pima women -weave beautiful baskets ofthe desert shrubs, an d of the cla ys underlying desert sand they fashionshimmering smooth red pottery. The men cultivate their crops, defendtheir homes again st all com ers, and tod ay their reed and clay habitationsnestle in peac e ben ea th the feathery mesquite and willows.

It was not alw ay s thus. Onl y a few year s ago the women were afraidto venture into the low hills where their basket material grew, and themen never cultivated their fields without a watch for Apache enemies.The chronicle of those years has been kept by notches and symbols cut inwillow sticks, and from the reading of these Pima Calendar Sticks wehave learned the story of the Pimas.

Time Alatchel on

in imetia


f ) MESQUITE tree hung againstj ' / the desert sky like wisps of smoke,

and in its shade Frank Pinkley andI sought refuge from the midday heat of

Southern Arizona, Juan Samuel, grand-


Juan Samuel— Keeper of the Calen-dar stick. Photograph by Frank Pink-ley in 1929. Courtesy National Park


2 5

father of the Pima boy beside us, sat ona woven mat in the white sunlight andfingered the precious stick carved with thehistory of his people. One could see that

he was not entirely happy, even though heknew and loved Frank Pinkley, a friend of30 years.

"My son, I do not like to talk to wom-en. I do not trust this white woman youhave brought. She will listen to the talkand then put on the paper what shewishes." He spoke in Pima. The grandsontried to soften the old man's words as heinterpreted.

"Say to your grandfather that only thewords he says will reach the paper. Youshall see what is written and explain tohim before it goes out for the white race

to read!" And with this assurance the his-tory lesson started, Juan Samuel speakingin his full toned voice and the young Pimachanging his speech into English.

"For untold time the Pima people havehad this land. Our fathers brought waterto the fields by small canals and always wehave raised beans and corn and pumpkins.A-kee-mtill (the Gila river) has beengood to us. It brings the rich soil to thefields and then the moisture that willmake the crops." Here he thoughtfullypassed his hands along the length of thestick as a musician touches his violin.


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This Calendar stick was a willow wandperhaps four feet in length and an inch inthickness. Each side was slightly flattenedand both sides were closely crowded withdots and notches, dashes and grotesquecarvings. The history proceeded down oneside, around the end and back up the otherside to the beginn ing and covered a periodof about 70 years of Pima annals. Sticks

older than that had been lost or destroyedby fire, and events dating from the t imethis particular stick covered had beenkept by the use of pencil and paper. Onlythis Calendar was to be found among thePimas. Others had been collected andplaced in museums in the East, and theone Juan Samuel had agreed to tead forMr. Pinkley and me was destined to joinits companions. As far as we know onlythe Kiowa and the Sioux Indians havekept carved records of the years similar tothose of the Pimas and they discontinuedthe custom many years ago.

It was with great reluctance the histor-ian permitted me to take his wooden cal-endar into my own hands and examine i t .Since he was almost entirely blind heturned his head this way and that like alistening bird while I pleaded with him.At last appearing to be satisfied he sur-rendered the stick. To me it seemed to becovered with small dots and little straightnotches. Now and then comical humanfigures showed up and they looked like achild's first efforts at art. I noticed whenthe frail sensitive old fingers touched oneof these figures he narrated a tragedy ofsome sort. Perhaps a rattlesnake bit awoman gathering mesquite beans, or theApaches came and killed a Pima or car-ried away a woman. Once, f ingering a

human figure he stopped and went backalong a few notches in front of it. "Thisis when the fire came out of a cloud andburned two men working in the fields."

"How do you know they were men thel ightning ki l led?"

"They have legs!" Looking over hisshoulder I saw a crude human figure. Thewomen were mere exclamation pointswithout detail.

All of the history was not drab dangerand hardship. For instance a certain typeof design recalled a happy experience tothe old man living completely in the past.Agave or saguaro liquor was brewed until

it was about 200 percent proof and what abrawl ensued. "Two men were kil led be-cause they liked the same woman!" A dis-creet cough recalled our raconteur fromhis grinning memories.

"This was the moon when the Yumascrept up on the Maricopa village and stolelots of women. They had arrows and clubswith which to fight and they started backacross the A-kee-mtill with the women butthe Pima warriors arrived and fought withthe Yumas. The captured women hid inthe chaparral and ran back to their homes.Few of the Yumas escaped alive . . . Then



S i a



Left to right: (1 ) Pima calendar slick. ( 2 ) Turkish tayy stick from A sia Mino r.(;>) Calendar stick from Norway. (4 ) an d (5 ) Pima calendar sticks, Southern Ari-zona. These relics in U. S. National museum. Photograph courtesy Smithsonian


O C T 1983 2 6

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the StatS fell. (This doubtless refers to themeteoric showers of 1833-34.) And theriver was angry with the Pimas and greatwaters covered the land. That was topunish some of our people who displeasedthe medicine men. But next year (dis-tinguished by the longer notch across thestick) came the bountiful crops of cornand wheat and squash and watermelonswhich grew in the rich soil th e angry rivercarried to the fields. The witch was killed

that year also."The old man pressed his thumb into a

deeper carving, then retraced the last fewengravings to be sure he was right. "Ourpeople were so thankful to the gods theydanced and feasted and drank so much tis-win made from the cactus fruit juice, theywere too drunk to have their senses andthe Apaches came and killed a woman.When the Pimas were sober again theyfollowed and five Apaches were slain.That was when we learned the Apacheswore rawhide jackets which made thePima arrows bounce harmlessly away . . .A year passed and no Apaches came. We

tilled the fields and filled big baskets withfood which our women hid in the groundand covered with cactus thorns so the littleanimals would not dig it up."

The story went on and on, mostly re-cording tales of Apache warfare and re-turn engagements. One sign somethinglike a skull and cross bones recorded aplague which swept all the Gila river vil-lages leaving sorrow and death in its wake."Four medicine men were the cause andthey were stoned until they died, then thesickness went away!" Grandfather dronedon with the record and the brisk youngvoice of the young schoolboy translatedwhile staring with amazem ent at the short-hand symbols I put down in my notebook.I expect he wondered what was the useof merely changing funny looking marks.

A plump young matron had joined usin the shade and engaged Mr. Pinkley inconversation. She told him she used tovisit his trading post when she was verysmall and that he always gave her candy.She was busy getting materials ready toweave a basket which sh e said, w ith a gig-gle, she expected to sell to me. It is un-usual for a Pima woman to work on bas-ketry except in the winter and she defin-

itely was making the basket for me. Ithangs above my desk today.

She had a bundle of willow twigs moistwith sap and she peeled and split thesewith her strong teeth. She had been soak-ing seed pods of martynid or Devil's Clawover night and now she tore the blackouter covering off with her teeth. Thisblack material is used to form the figuresand designs in the basket. I noticed shetook only one strip from the center of eachclaw and then threw the pod away al-though two or maybe three strips couldhave been secured. Her answer, when Iasked why she did this, was very charac-

2 7

teristic. "My mother and my grandmotheronly used one strip!"

Grandfather was impatient with all thiswoman talk and he shuffled his moccasinshod feet to let me know I was wasting histime. He had nothing else to do with time,but no female was going to impose onhim. "Now here, Apaches were beatingbeans out of dry mesquite pods when thePimas shot arrows into the camp. A blind

Apache was killed." I looked very cart-fully at the symbol and the Apache may -have been blind. I could see nothing per-taining to his eyesight. "The one armedwhite trader sold his store and for somereason not known to the Pimas threwaway his grain w hich our p eople gatheredup and saved."

Many of the events related may seemtrivial to the white race so terribly busywith its inventions, its wars and its stockmarket ups and downs, but we must real-ize that the relative importance of eventsdiffers in the minds of white people and

Indians. As I looked over the things hehad recorded on the stick I found theycovered, according to importance giventhem by the historian—battles, floods,earthquakes, falling stars and droughts;years of plenty and tiswin celebrations;sickness; accidents such as lightning,drownings and rattlesnake bites; and laterevents connected with the establishmentof schools, missions, railroads and tele- •graph lines.

"Two medicine men, father and son,were killed because they betrayed the Pim a

people." And here was an event, indeed—"Firearms were given the Pimas by thebig white soldier." General Carleton is-sued firearm;; to the Pimas to defendthemselves against the Apaches. "Chil-dren were piling up gourds in a heapwhen Apache:; crept up and killed them."The small round dots were the gourds."The telegraph line was run throughfrom east to west."

"How do you know it was built fromeast to west?" I asked.

"The carving is sloped toward the lastend of the Calendar."

"A Pima was killed by his horse be-cause he caught i t by th e tail an d itdragged him to death . . . while a partywas gathering tiswin material a mare hada colt . . . a white man went hunting hishorse and he died from being tired. Hewas found sitting against a tree. The roar-ing machine came on a steel road on theedge of the Pirna country." The SouthernPacific railroad built its line throughthere in 1876. "A Pima robbed and killed

. a white man and was hanged at Florence.Measles killed many children. A drunkPima fell off a freight train and was

killed. The first wagons were issued bythe government to the Pimas. A whiteman was shot and killed by a Pima. Whitesettlers at Tempe invited the Pimas to afeast. The wife of the head chief died."

As the story went along signs of civili-zation crept into the pages. "During a tis-win feast a man put poison into the drinkof his love rival who died in.great agony!A Mexican killed a Pima but the Pimas

were good enough not to want to kill theMexican." And during the next few yearsa mission was built, a schoolboy commit-ted suicid e; there was a heavy fall of snowwhich could be rolled into balls and whichfrightened the Pimas. One year no cropat all grew and the Indians were all hun-gry. Barbed wire was issued by theagency; lightning struck a stagecoach andkilled a Pima riding on it. The Indian de-partment established a school and thechildren soon thought they were muchsmarter than their old folks. (Flamingyouth knows no creed nor color.) A Pima

youth employed to carry mail became in-sane and shot a white man he met on theroad. The last entry on this stick wasmade in 1900. "The President came toPhoenix."

That ended the story and we left the oldhistorian gently touching a notch here andthere and dreamuig of the glory that waspast.


Questions are on page 101—False. The road-runner while not

equipped for sustained flight doesleave the ground for short distances.

2—True.3—False. Sunset crater is of volcanic

origin. •A—False. Fossilization of wood is be-

lieved to have taken place throughthe crystallization of minerals inSolution.

5 False. Bill William s was a trapperand mountain man.

6 False. Capital of Nevada is CarsonCity.

7—True. 8—True.9—False. Blossom of the Palo Verde is


tl—False. Tamarisk was brought to ti ieUnited States during the presentcentury.

12 True . The San Juan's annual dis-charge of 2>/2 million acre feet isnearly double that of the RioGrande.

13—True.l4_False. Kit Carson died in 1867. The

Lincoln County w ar was from 1877to 1881.

15—True. 16—True.17—False. Hassayampa is the name of a

river in Arizona.18—True. 19 —  T ru e .20—False. Pauline Weaver was a guide

and mountain man.

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Before railroads came to the Southwest the Colo-rado river was a main artery of transportation formining and military operations in the desert regionof Southern California and Arizona. Always atreacherous stream for boatmen, the piloting of theold paddle-wheelers used for passenger and freight-ing purposes called for skill, courage and ingenui-ty—and Captain Isaac Polhamus had a generousshare of all these qualities. Here is the story of one

of the best known and loved of all the old river cap-tains.



the Colorado Riverto the Head of Navigation

Between the first and middle of June, 1894 .—Through the Wonderful Black Canyon and Devil's

Gate Canyon.On theSteamer Mohave

Polhamus and Mellon, OwnersI. Polhamus, Master.

This announcement appeared in a little folder distributedt h r ough the Southwest f rom Yuma to San Francisco in thespr ing of 1894 . I have a copy of the folder on mydesk, sentto me recently byMrs. James Fleetwood Fulton, gran ddaug hterof Captain Isaac Polhamus.

An excursion up the Colorado was an adventure in thosedays. An d Capt . Polhamus was one of t he most resourcefula m o n g the skippers who had learned to pilot the shallow-draught paddle-wheel boats which navigated the shoals andrapids of the fickle stream.

Even as early as 1S94 the press agents were ballyhooing theresources and scenic beauty of the Colorado. Here is a para-

graph taken from an excursion boat announcement:"The foremost object of this excursion is to show the possi-

bilities of mining and agriculture of the country through whichit will extend. But it will have other attractions as wel l . Wi thnone of the hazardous hardships and privations of roughingit , in saddle oc on foot, the tr ip will be through the hear t ofthe most weird and awesome scenery on earth, nowhere elseto be seen except in the abysmal chasms and go rges of theColo-rado river . . . The tr ip is full of thri l l ing interest . At t imes theview will be unobst ructed on either side for miles „ . . Againthe gritty little craft will be puffing an d wheezing throughnarrow gorges wi th wal l s so high and abrupt as to almost ob-scure the l ight of day . . . In four places along the route ther i p i ds are so heavy an d fierce that, but for the aid of a sturdyshore l ine, they would be quite impassable. Ringbolts have

Captain Isaac Polkamus at home in Yuma. with his grand-

daughter. Photograph courtesy Mrs. James FlestwoodFulton.

been securely fastened into the walls of the canyon, and acable suspended therefrom to a steam capstan in the bow ofthe boat is the tedious but certain means of locomotion." Theround trip fare, as announced in the circular including mealsand berth, was $62.25 from San Francisco, and $57.75 fromSan Diego.

Robust, erect, vigorous, and forthright. Captain Polhamus

was one framed to command. Hewas of florid com plexion, andalways wore full whiskers—black in early life, white as hisgrandchildren first remembered him. On thedeck of his steam-boat he wor e the usual garb and insignia of his station—ducktrousers, white shirt, open at the throat , and white cap withthe customary braid indicative of his r ink as captain.

H e was firm and decisive in all his ways; sometimes roughno doubt, but notunkindly—dominating rather than domineer-ing.

Isaac Polhamus first dropped anchor in Arizona in IS5<S.His occupation as entered on the membership roll of the Pio-neers ' Historical society was that of master mariner. For 66years he lived in Yuma, and it was from Yuma at theag e of 94that he passed to his eternal haven.

H e was born in New York city in 182S. The di te of his

O C T 1983 2 8

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Grand Canyon at the mouth of Diamond creek. Repro-duced from Lieut. Joseph C. Ives" "Report Upon theColo-rado River of the West."

death was January 16, 1922. As a boy he worked for his fatheron a Hudson river steamboat.

In 1846, with a crew of other adventurous spirits, Polhamusset sail for San Francisco in quest of gold. The voyage was bywa y of Cape Horn, an d required 327 days. After reachingCalifornia he worked on theAmerican river a few months atplacer mining. When a flood carried away all thegrub he andhis party had brought with them, he returned to-a river life,steamboating on the Sacramento. In the early 1850s sailingvessels began making regular trips between San Francisco and

Port Isabel at the mouth of the Colorado river, touching atCape San Lucas at the southern tip of the peninsula. At PortIsabel river steamers met the ships, and after an exchange offreight steamed up the river to Yuma, La Paz, and points stillfarther north. From Yuma, goods were distributed by packtrains or wagons to all parts of the Gadsden Purchase. Cargolanded at La Pazwas hauled bywagon trains to Wickenburg,Prescott, and themines and army camps near these towns.

Yuma was only a landing place when Polhamus went therein theemploy of the Colorado Steam Navigation company. Anadobe building 100 feet long and 25 feet deep divided intofour rooms of equal size was the only house in the settlement.T wo of the rooms were occupied by thenavigation company asoffice an d storeroom and theother two byGeorge H. Hooperand company, Arizona's first merchant princes. The buildingwas located where the Gondolfo hotel later stood. The chief

engineer of the steamboat line for a number of years was DavidNeahr. Like Polhamus, he was a native of New York. AboutI860, these two friends decided to visit th e scenes of theirboyhood along the Hudson. The journey was made by stage.At Pantano, Arizona, the travelers were held up byApaches,an d in Texas progress was delayed by a herd of buffalo. It took15 days to reach St. Louis.

Many were the stirring stories told by Captain Polhamusabout the experiences of himself and his river comrades—theforceful and picturesque men of the '50s, '60s and '70s. Indeed,he was more than a good story-teller. He was a reliable historianof the importanc events of hi s era in the Southwest.

The deck hands on the steamers at first were all Indians.Their pay was 50 cents a day. Notbeing able to count money,each native kept tally of the number of days he worked by ty-

ing knots in a string he wore around his neck. Each knot re-corded a day's work. An Indian demanded as many half dollarsas he had knots on his string. Only thus could he figure up

\ f BBSg£?t Yuma in the f :11p| |* :v fS?^ f ^ ' S ? | ^ ^or t


/• Ron fi£&Browne's "Adven- , \̂ "«fcC

^^ZW^'---:MMBW- •


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Photograph taken May 1, 1876, when the Yuma schools observed May Day with a picnicvoyage up the Colorado in the "Mohave" with Capt. Polhamus at the helm.

the amount due him, and he demanded that a separate 50 centpiece be handed out for each knot, so Polhamus had to importthat coin in large quantities.

Sometimes one of his deck hands would become unruly. Itwas not easy to find a way to punish unruly hands. He tried

various methods without much success, and finally hefound he could make a good Indian out of a bad one by pickinghim up and pitching him overboard and then pulling him backup on deck.

Father Paul Figueroa, Yuma's historian, asserts that Pol-hamus was the most experienced navigator on the Colorado.Among the captain's notable exploits was the running of thesteamer Gila from Yuma to Needles and back, a distance of 250miles, in 10 days, counting out time spent at Need les in un-loading. He told how in one treacherous canyon below FortMohave he had to "let the steamer in stern foremost and thatshe went down it half way when she turned bow down andfinally came out as she had entered," wrong end foremost.

His favorite steamer was the Mohave; and, on account of itsgood accommodations, passengers also preferred this vessel toany other.

Polhamus was easily able to make the run downstream fromFort Mohave to Yuma in one day. It was another matter whenit came to going up stream. On one trip, in 1859, so swift wasthe current and so difficult the navigation, it took him '28 daysto force this same steamer from Yuma to Fort Mohave. Thefare on the Mohave from Yuma to Ehrenberg was $30.00, in-cluding meals and berth. When the water was very low it re-quired three days to make the trip up the river to Eh::enbergand five to Mohave. Polhamus said that on one voyage in veryearly days he ran into ice at Blythe, and that sometimes alongthe banks of the river he saw camels, lean, lonely survivors ofthe herd Beale had brought into Arizona in the 1850s.

La Paz was at one time the chief point on the river, but thisdistinction later passed to Ehrenberg, and finally to Yuma.

La Paz was situated on a flat three miles from Ehrenberg, andit was with great difficulty that a steamboat could be landedthere. It was the first capital of Yuma county. Ehrenberg be-ing on a bluff, steamboat-landing there was easy. By act oflegislature the county seat was removed to Arizona City (now-

Yu ma ) in 1870. Upon Sheriff O. F. Tow nsen d fell the duty ofmaking the transfer, and he engaged Captain Polhamus totransport all the county officials, records, and documents inhis steamer Nina Tilden. When the job was done, there wasa celebration for the captain in Arizona City, and he was hon-ored in many ways by his fellow citizens.

W he n the Southern Pacific railroad reached the Colorado in1877 , the navigation company went out of busin ess. No t so-Polhamus. Until 1904, at which time river traffic was broughtto an end by the building of the government reclamation dam,,he continued to run a line of steamers. Citizens of Yurna re-member how for almost a generation after the coming of therailroad Polhamus carried merry May day picnic parties up the-river on his boat as far as Picacho. His steamer was the last oneto come down the river before the dam was built.

In 1865, Isaac Polhamus married Senorita Sacramento Sem-

brano, a daughter of the great Ferra family of California. Herpeople owned an extensive cattle ranch on the Colorado near-La Paz. The captain found it almost as difficult to court thismaid as he did to sail the uncertain Colorado river; for heknew no Spanish, and his sweetheart, "daughter of the Dons,"could speak no English. So what they had to say to each otherhad to be spoken through an interpreter.

Even after vows were plighted, there were difficulties inthe way. There was no priest or minister in the region. In orderto secure a Father to solemnize the marriage rites, CaptainPolhamus had to bring him across the desert from San Diego,and this required not only time but the hiring of a specialstagecoach and the outlay of $500.00 in cash.

Many children were born to them and nearly all their sons.


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and daughters survived them. Among thechildren are - are: Mrs. S.F.Oswald and Thomas M. Polhamus, ci t i-zens of California; A. A. Polhamus, trav-eling passenger agent for the CanadianPacific railroad; Mrs. Agnes Hodges ,Mrs. T. T. Cull , James M., Jennie ,Charles H., and Isaac Polhamus—all ofYuma, Arizona.

High honors were paid to Captain Pol-

hamus in Yuma on his SSth birthday,April 27,1916. At that time he was notonly the oldest man belonging to an Elkslodge in the state of Arizona, but was alsoon e of the very few survivors of preterri-torial days in Arizona. That morning herose early, breakfasted heartily, with ou tth e aid of glasses wrote a letter to a rela-tive, and then with vigorous step, hewalked to the Elks' clubhouse there to re-ceive greetings throughout the day fromfriends whocame to congratulate himupon his good health and the leading parthe had played in thebuilding up of Yumaan d the surrounding region during a pe-riod of 60 years.

More notable, were the evidences of re-spect and affection accorded this grandold pioneer at the t ime of his dea t h inJanuary, 1922. The Elks held a specialmemorial service for their veteran mem-be r the Tuesday evening following his

' death. The Indians gave even more touch-ing evidence of devotion and sense ofloss. Long had they looked up to him andtrusted him; and now, to be near theirfriend and pay him their last respects, theyfilled the yard of his home, l ined the re-taining wall , and even overflowed into aneighbor ing lot across the street. A bigbonfire was lighted on this vacant lot to

keep them warm. Some of these Indianmourners remained there the two nightsan d the day that intervened — relativesbringing them their food. Their grief andsense of loss was genuine. At times theygave voice to soft, almost inaudible chant-ing. A requiem mass was sung in theChurch of the Immaculate Conception,and then the body was carried to theYuma cemetery for its final rest.

Captain Polhamus was pr oud of his

family and he loved his home. His wife,children, and grandchildren all idolizedhim. The appraisal of him given to me by

one of his grandchildren seems to me as

correct as it is tender and considerate."Grandfather was rigid in character,

f irm, and his voice was deep, resounding.W h e n he had something to say,it was said

briefly, it waswell worded and to the

point, and always carried weight. He had

the respect of all.Despi te the outward ap-

pearance of being very stern, and he was

stern when the need of it arose, I found

him one of the kindest , most lovable and

understanding hearts I have ever known,an d I considered him the best companiona child could have."


Almost 40 ears ago, DESERT MAGAZINE was roud

to announce that the aiser Steel Corporationhad

dedided toobtain iron ore ortheir Fontana, Cal

steel mill from a site atEagle Mountain. This

would mean that extensive development work would

be required along with theconstruction of a com-

plete city to ouse and^service mine workers.This was dueto heremote location oftheEagle

Mountain mine, 12miles north of Desert Center,

which is etween Indio andBlythe. A railroad

would also beconstructed with the racks joining

those oftheSouthern Pacific Railroad at a point

near theEastern shore oftheSaltonSea.That announcement setinmotion theconstruction

of what wasto beoneofthe ew modern company

owned townsites inCalifornia.

Now, wemust announce the eath and progressive

abandonment ofEagle Mountain, the ine andtown.

At its eig ht, Eagle Mountain produced 99% of

the orerequired bytheir Fontana steel plant.The ore was ined by he pen pitmethod, then

pelletized, andtransported some 16 0 milesbyraiI toFontana.

Eagle Mountain once hada population ofover

300 0 residents. Nowitismostly unpopulated.

Only a token force remain, helping in heclosing

of the ine and ismemberment ofthetown. All

of theland is he roperty ofKaiser, hence o-

resident owned anyland. -

Kaiser expects tocomplete hauling out the

remaining stockpile ofore ellets inDecember

1 9 8 3 . It isthen anticipated that thefinal

abandonment ofEagle Mountain will take place and

the railroad dismantled. TheFontana steel plant

is also closing.

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S/'/ver Lo/ce


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The Water tank at Rasor Station

Continued from page 13 T 8 T Railroad

This helped slov7 the amount of losses, but they w are still present. Finally,

on October 8, 1933, the shops and offices at Ludlow were moved to Death Valley

Junction and the p ortion of th e line from Ludlovz to Crucero w as shut down.

Economics did not improve and after suffering more flood damage in March

1933, the T & T filed for permission to cease operations. Their request was

granted and trains ceased operating on J une 14, 1940. However, the tracks

w ere left in place and the equipment stored, awaiting future operation. All

equipment and track was to be kep t in operating order. However, the fatal

blow came wh en th e War Department requisitioned the line for scrap metal and

on July 18, 1942, scrappers started tearing up the rails from Beatty, Ifevada.

Th e extent of remaining ties, spik es, etc. is due to the fact that the scrapp erw as in a hurry and wanted only the rail.

Today , the area is still relatively unpopulated and open. The abandoned

roadbed is easy to locate and v ery obvious in places. Parts of it are littered

w ith ties and spikes. The foundations of stations and buildings along the

former righ t of w ay remain. The area is rich in minerals and rockh ounds can

spend many d ays exploring. Sharp eyes may still find a relic or two of days


I personally found an unused box car band and seal fran the T & T dated

1917, and in mint condition; w h ile walking the old righ t of way north of

Valjean Station. And later th at same day, I found a beautiful old raised

O C T 1983

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glass whiskey bottle at the side of the railroad dike. Th e ountryformerly served by the T & T is largely remote and unspoiled. Visitorsto the area should attempt to eep it that way.

Some good exploring can be done in the area of the old stationsandsidings. The following p oints and routes are shown on the small mapson the previous p a g e s . One of m y favorite routes is to take High way

127 North frcm Baker to approximately 16.5 miles from town. There, adirt road leads off o the east and the site of Riggs Station.;

Forty years of occupancy make these old stations and sidings ofspecial interest as they usually yield sane good finds of artifacts.Head north from Riggs Station toward a pass in the Silurian H i l l s . Fourwh eel drive is necessary for safety. Remember that y ou re far frantown and not on a paved or frequently used road.

As y ou nter the p a s s , sone ruins are visible on the eft. There isnot too much left of hat was a good sized building. Th etype of const-ruction is ismilar to the ruins at Sperry Siding in the Armagosa Canyonso it is assumed that it as a railroad property. Bits of urple glassand soldered cans date th e site as re 1915.

Continuing north, the road joins the T & T railbed and is almost

covered in laces with blowing sand. Th e desert has a way of reclaimingmans invasions. A short distance beyond, an east-west road crossesth eright of ay and leads to the Annex Silver Mine. Continuing north orabout four m i l e s , I drove on and off the old roadbed, through gulchesand ravines, and observed w here th e large trestles were built!.. Then Iarrived at Valjean Station. I d id a lot of alking and looking in thisarea.

Further.'Jiorth at the Armagosa Gorge, site of the most difficultandexpensive construction on the T & T, I found another area that invitesexploration. Locals tell me that agate and petrified wood can be foundin th e rea. For sure, railroad ruins abound. Again, this is strictlyfour wheel drive country. North of the gorge at Tecopa Hot Springs isa good place to stop and njoy the mineral waters.

It is a shame th e federal government requisitioned the T & T forscrap. I f it adn't, th e road might still exist today (?). Althoughremote and known for its sunnier temperatures, thearea holds manyattractions for the amper, rockhound, naturalist and istorian. Forthose, interested in details, I have listed the stations, their distancefrom Ludlow, and other comments on the next page. Happ y exploring.

Please note that the milages show n on the chart are in railroadm i l e s , not highway m i l e s , and measured along the right of ay, includingcurves. Sometimes, one can ravel ten r twelve miles just to race

a mile or two f railbed, considering detours and such.

.PPROXIMATELY250 freewayan d highway miles northe ast of Los Angeles in the arid he art of what was

once considered on e of the m ost grim ly forbidding p ar ts of the world lies

Death Valley

33 O C T 1983

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N ame of Station Miles to Lud lou Remarks








Silver lake


Valjean •









Death Valley Jet.

Bradford Siding






Gold Center Beatty)



























Connections with A T & SF RR, Ludlow Southern RP

site of"original offices and shops

Dry lake. Station well still there.

Named for the desert tree

Connection with the UP RR. Spanish for cross-ing.Named for Clarence Rasor, T & T engineer

A normally dry lake

Named for Richard C. Baker, a Borax Co. officiaL

Site is east of original townsite

Named for Frank Rigg s, owner of a silver mine

two miles east of the stationNamed for Eugene Valjean, T & T constructionengineerProposed site for connection with ArmagosaValley RR— nev er builtNamed for Grace Sperry, a friend of Mrs. F.M. SmithSite of branch line to a gy psun deposit

Connection with Tecopa RR, named for anIndian Ch ief, old TecopaNamed for Christian Zabriskie, Vice-pres ofBorax Co. and former Candelaria, Nev. banker

Named for the indian tribe. Station had adaytime only telegraph

Connection with Pac. Coast Borax RR to smallborax operation (narrow gauge)Named for Borax Smith's wife, Evelyn Smith

Connection with Death Valley RR (narrow gauge)

Later site of T &. T offices and shops

site of clay deposits

Named for th e Penna. town whose investorsfinanced w ater for town of Greenwater

Named after th e Lee Brothers, local residents

Named for the ash trees growing in the area

Branch line to a marble mine

Connection with the Las Vegas & Tonopah RR,

Bullfrog-Goldfield RR.

3 4 O C T 1983

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General view of the Largo canyon region. The tower islocated on the mesa. Photo by Malcolm Farmer.

Tower of the Standing God. used by ancient Navajo towatch for theapproach of their enemies.

Slowly but surely the arche-ologisfs areunravell ing the mys-tery which surrounds the originand prehistoric life of the Navajonation. In this story, Richard VanValkenburgh ha s contributed abi t of new lore—thanks to theclue given him by Old LadySam in a remote Indian tradingpost.


J / Y FIRST inkling of the Tower ofslrL the Standing God came in 1937

while I was making an archeologi-cal reconnaissance in the vicinity of Jiman d An n Counselor 's t rading post in thewild and remote mesa country borderingthe Canyon Largo in northwestern NewMexico.

As was mycustom I was loafing awaythe late winter afternoon in the postwatching and l is tening to theNavajo whocame to trade andwarm themselves by thepot-bellied stove. That afternoon the mainattraction was the t reat ing of the sore eyesof Old Lady Sam, the matriarch of theRainy Mountain region.

When Jul i Chiquito, one of thebest in-formed Navajo in the vicinity came in Icalled him to my side. After we had light-ed our smokes I started to feel him out re-garding a series of ancient hogan sites I

had discovered that morning on thenearbyTukohokadi m:sa.

I was not aware that Jim was listeninguntil his deep voice boomed out, " Someyears ago while Ann and I were runningsheep on th e old Sam Lybrook place downin the Rincon Largo we ran across a num-ber of old hogtns. And near them were anumber of stone towers. Maybe they'reNavajo?"

Then turning to Old Lady Sam whohadescaped Ann's eye dropper and hadwrapped herself up in her blanket hequest ioned, "Grandmother—what do youknow about those-old towers down in theRincon L argo?"

N o t to be rushed byanything less thana flash of l ightning it was some momentsbefore the old lady answered, "Of coursethey're Navajo! Everything around herethat amounts to anything was made orbuilt by the Navajo or their gods. These


towers were built a long t ime ago by theOld People for protection against thewildanimals, the Utes, and the Mexicans.

"My grandfather said that there wereonce 12 towers. But with my owneyes Ihave only seen eight. On e stands on thetip of Hanging Pot mesa to the west. Thereare two more down in the Canyon Largonear Trubey's ranch. Two guard the en-trance of Tsekoo, Lesser Box Canyon,which is the real name of theRincon Lar-go . And the seventh is up-canyon on themesa above Mud Lake Rincon.

"But most important of all is the eighth.That lies on the main mesa between MudLake Rincon and the C anyon Arviso. For itis here, hidden in the deep pine forest, thatstill stands the Tow er of the Standing Godwhich was once the home of Sabildon, thegreat chief."

That name had a familiar ring. And afew moments later I remembered that this


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wa s the Navajo who was the chief whomthe Spaniards called Antonio. And it washe who had received from Captain JuanBautista de Anza in Sa n t i Fe in 1785 "acane with silver points and a medal" as areward for aid against the Gila Apache.

Sensing that now was the t ime to probefor further information I asked, "Grand-mother, should one go to search for theTow e r of the Standing God how would

they know they had found it? Is it largerthan the others? Has it a different shape?O r is there a mark on it?"

The re was another long period of si-lence before she answered, "Why do youthink they called it the Tower of the Stand-ing God? While I have never seen thiswith my own eyes—my old grandfathertold that somewhere on its walls there is apicture of a Y^ii or Navajo god."

Soon after the sunrise of the next dayJulian, my interpreter and a local Navajofrom Kinbito, had us packed and ready tostart toward the Rincon Largo. After giv-in g us last minute directions Jim suggested

that we climb a nearby crag and get abird's-eye view of the country we were toexplore.

Beyond, and across the Largo, we couldsee the gentle stepping up of the mesas tothe pine forests of the Ticarilla Apache—and then on to the dim line against the skythat was the backbone of America—theContinental Divide, which at this point iscalled Cejita Blanca ridge.

A thin snow was sprinkling our wind-shield when we returned to our pickup.We soon picked up the trail that wanderedaway from Jim's lambing corrals. Travel-ing northeast we bounced down across aflat two miles before entering the low

pinyon-fringed walls of Haynes canyon.Fol lowing the curvature of the east wall

for three miles we soon rounded a lowpoint and pulled up in a small cove wherelay the ruins of the old Haynes ranch andtrading post. Following Jim's directionswe left the pickup and climbed to thenearby rim to see a small spring-cave inwhich Indian relics had been found someyears before.

After scratching around in the fill for afew moments we were lucky enough tocollect a few sherds of a grey pottery whichwe later learned was typical of Navajohandicraft during the 18th century. Dis-regarding Julian's grumblings about "get-

t ing caught in a big-snow" I hustled himback to the pickup.

W i t h ou r wiper sweeping off thestick)'snow-flakes we w e n t on down canyon.After a t ime we could see the walls wereexpanding. Then as we broke through itslow jaws and came out on a wide expanseof sand that faded away in the pewter-colored snow-fog, Julian said:

" 'Tis Abidazgaii, W he re the W ideCanyons Meet. The «ast fork rises in theSierra Nacimiento above Cuba while thesouth on e flows down from the crags ofthe sacred mountain of Sisnateel above Po-









Wotchrorrri Sho«n Thin Q

Seal. ° =1 Miltilltrero. Here really starts the grandfather ofall canyons—the Canyon Largo!"

Rounding a point which nosed downinto the bed of the Largo, which at thisplace is one-half mile wide, we creptthrough the snow covered ruts until wereached the mouth of a wide canyon.

Motioning for me to stop Julian said,

"Hastin, here is Tsekoo. Look closely onthe points and you will see the towers ofwhich Old Lady Samspoke. I can tell bythe look in your eyes that you would liketo climb up there right now. But let us goon—for the trail up the canyon to MudLake Rincon may be long and hard ."

Reluctantly agreeing to Julian's sugges-tion I took on e last look at the towers andstarted up the Rincon Largo. Skirting thetalus slide of the north rim Julian said aswe passed a small ranch house, "This isth e old Sam Lybrook place. It was herethat Jim and Ann lived when they discov-ered the towers."

Beyond the ranch house our trail wasal l of our ownmaking. For some three or•four miles we dodged gullies and densestands of gaunt looking chamiso. Whenwe came to a small cove Julian said, "Hereit is—Mud Lake Rincon! We must leavethe pickup here." And then I spotted a lowknoll in the center of the cove that looked

interesting. A ctually theknoll was nothingmore than an accumulation of debris thathad settled around the walls of a prehis-toric structure. Made of slabs of the localsandstone the main feature was a kiva-likestructure some 30 feet in diameter. Andadjoining it to the east were two 6 by 8foot square ante-chambers.

After making a rough field sketch wefound a few pottery sherds. They told usthis site was definitely not of Navajo ori-gin. Their characteristics were similar to10th century sites which had been reportedsome miles eastward near Gallina, NewMexico.

O C T 1983

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,. BL A C K

Reconstruction of 18lh century Na-

vajo vessels \rorrt sherds collected inRjncon Largo. Very jew whole speci-mens of this unusua l po ttery are in


From this site we spotted a small butsheer ravine that slashed up to the mainmesa. Heading that way we were soonfighting our way up through thick under-brush and rocks. And just before makingthe last sharp ascent Julian veered off anddisappeared in a litter of large boulders.

Then his voice came echoing back andforth across the ravine, "Come here Has-tin. I have located the old trail. And be-

side it there are some fine Indian writ-ings!"

Scrambling through the rocks I joinedmy interpreter. Not too badly weathered,the glyphs, which l\ad been incised andnot painted on the rock, were of animaltracks, crude human hands, snake-like fig-ures, forked lightning, a deer, and mostinteresting of all—a. man on horseback!

•The man on horseback, similar to thoseI have seen many times on the walls of theCanyon de Chelly, could not have beenover 200 years old. And as the predomin-ant archeology in the vicinity later provedto be Navajo it was reasonable to assume

that all of these rock pictures were theirhandiwork.

The old trail, worn deep in the rock, ledup through a thin crevice toward the top.Finally we boosted ourselves up over thelast sheer stretch of rim to reach the saddleand break into the open. There perchedabove up on the mesa rim was a well pre-served watchtower!

There was only a series of low benchesbetween us and the tower. And soon wewere at its base breathless and curious.Climbing to the top room by means of anancient ladder, which had been made by

deeply notching a pinyon log, we began toreconstruct the story of the tower.

Located on the summit of a large rock-outcropping the tower had been erectedof flat slabs of sandstone. The roof, partof which was still in place, was constructedof pinyon logs held in place by large flag-stones. W hi .e no evidence remained we as-sumed that the whole had been weather-sealed with earth and bear grass.

Below the tower and clustered aroundthe rock were small dwelling rooms. Theirroof construction and walls were the sameas that of the tower room. And from thedates we later obtained from their timberswe found they had been felled with fireand then trimmed with stone axes between1770 and 1785.

Climbing down from the tower I beganto prowl the forest. It was hard to spotanything small owing to the fallen snow.But after a half-hour's search I had locatedwithin a half-mile of the tower the saggingtripods and ceremonial door-stones of 14of the ancient alchindes'ai, or forked stick

hogans.Had it not been for Julian's sharp eyes I

would have missed one of the main cluesto the story of the towers. Just after locat-ing the burned rocks and depressed ring ofa tache, or sweathouse he called down tome from his perch high in the tower.

"Come up here and look, Hastin. WhatOld Lady Sam told me was right. Fromthis point one can see every tower in Tse-koo. She further told me that around eachof the towers there dwelt an extended fam-ily or clan, and that in times of trouble allof the towers stood together against theenemy.

"Can you see the picture of 200 yearsago? High in those towers we passed atthe mouth of file canyon the watchers spythe Mexicans coming from the east. Smokesignals float into the sky. And when theMexicans come the women and childrenare all in the towers and the warriors areready to fight."

This reminded me that we had not yetfound the glyph of the Standing Godwhich would identify this tower as that ofSabildon. The location was right—butpossibly the story was only a traditionwhich had been elaborated upon as itpassed around the campfires of the Peoplefrom generation to generation?

First we combed the whole surface ofthe outcropping. All we found was a trashmound on the west side where it hadsluffed off the rim. Here we collected afine assortment of sherds which later wereto play an important part in working outan early Navajo pottery sequence.

Finally, giving up the search I climbedback up into the tower. I started to removethe log ladder, not as archeological loot,but for the tree rings that might give us adate. And while I was wrestling with theheavy timbe r th e heavy overcast' opened

, t ,



I . . " 1 %

The Standing God of Sabildon'swatchlower. Norton Allen made thissketch from the author's field notes.

and a shaft of thin sunlight came down tolight up the rock below.

My eyes fell on something peculiardown near the base. Calling to Julian I di-rected, "Move around to the front of therock. Find a place where is a patch of sun-light. There is something . . ."

The answer came quickly, "Hastin!Come down and take a look. I think wehave found that for which we search. Forhere before me is the faint outline of aYe'ii I have never seen before. This mustbe the Tower of the Standing God!"

After looking over the badly weatheredglyph I took out my notebook and beganto make a sketch. With its rectangularhead, elongated body terminated by a shortflared skirt, the technique was unquestion-ably similar to that used by Navajo medi-cine men when they make sand pictures.

Later upon showing the sketch to Na-vajo medicine men at Fort Defiance theyagreed that it was of Navajo origin. But

they could not agree as to its place in theNavajo pantheon. It was placed in the

• min or deity class and was associated withrain.and lightning.

Thus, thanks to the guiding shaft ofsunlight given up by ]ohinJai, the Sun-bearer we not only discovered somethingnever before seen hy white men, but wereable also to substantiate the Navajo tradi-tion that deep in the wilds of the RinconLargo in northwestern New Mexico thereonce dwelt the wild Dine under theirchief Sabildon, the guardian of the Towerof the Standing God.


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Y \


/ ' • - ,



/ .


Orange, CaliforniaA hill ofsand, apainted rock,A breeze topass me by,A mesa and the mountain haze.An eagle inthe sky.

The hard worn trail beneath my feet,A burro atmy side.The lizards that will whisk away,To find aplace tohide.

Th e desert songs 1 hear atnight,The old owl's mournful call.The starlit heavens seem solarge,A nd I down here so small.

I love this land, the land I've trod.Until I 'm old and lame,And though I've never found much gold,I'm happy just the same.

e e •


Glendale, CaliforniaNature was angry infashioning thee,Frowning dark inthy majestyFlung across the trackless void,Thy awesome beauty unalloyed.Spurning wisdom ofall the gods,

Defying nature's every mood.Flowed the mighty Colorado,Cleft thy heart with .maddening power,Thy peaks like iron helmets crowned.And chasms narrow, sullen frown.Flood crests ofthy troubled watersFight their way through old nevadas,Thy strength and power, born toblessEarth's teeming millions indistress.Thy angry waters rushing throughMan's conquering hand, their will subdueThy towering peaks and chasms darkAnd mighty river's pulsing heart.

Thy majesty, OGrand Canyon!E N C H A N T M E N T


Dumas , TexasSilence deep and calm and soothing

Cloaks the wondrous desert n ight.Stars, that glittering, seem tot inkle ,

Casting iridescent light.

'Gainst the cliff, amoon-beam glancingShatters like a crystal spar.

Yet the silence isunbroken .Naught can ere that stillness mar

Coyotes wailing inthe d is tanceFade and blend asthough a thought.

All the magic round about usWhispers—See what God hath wrought.


Santa Cruz, California

Stern sentry with agallant hcari,A match forall your foes,

Unmoved by Summer's flaming dart,You keep your stoic pose.

But when young April, gayly dressedSpreads beauty allabout,

. You wear aflower for acrest,Conquistador of drought!

• • •


Pasadena, California

His shirt isblack with age and dirt;His hat istorn and tattered;The trousers hewears arefrayed with t

years—And his shoes are scuffed and battered.

He is Seldom-Seen-Slim from over therOf the simmering Panamint Valley.Happy ishe with his burros three—Nan and Mamie and Sally.

Seldom-Seen-Slim iswithered and thin,Forty years he has hunted forgold,Scorning the tastes ofcity men,He iscast from aspecial mold.

Two score years now notch his trail,Since first he came this wayBu t hisstep is spry, for under theHe wins aprincely pay.

I envy Slim his carefree life,As he journeys o'er Panamint Valley.A mariner ishe on adesert sea.With Nan and ivlamie and Sally.


Santa Ana, CaliforniaOH! the blustery whirlwinds

On the desert's plateaus, •

Are truant boysWith bare brown toes;

Who kick up their heelsAnd scuff the dust—

Ever growing more robust.

And the little whirlwindsAre maidens gay!

W ho intheir dancesBend and sway;

Who whirl and twirl,Then roundabout—

Twisting and turning.They bow themselves out.


With purpose let usmarch! The heatOf sun—the chill of storms that beatAbout us, shall nothold us back!

Nor shall the lackOf strength deter bynight or day.For God is all theLight andWay.

Go forward, glad that you can go!—Your heart with Truth and Love

aglow.Right Purpose is thehighest role

i For anysoul.


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FUDGE FINGERS2/3 cup {1 small can) undiluted

evaporated milk.1 2-3 cup sugar

Vi teaspoon saltMix and boil in sauce pan over lowheat, stirring constantly. Bring toboil an d cook 5 minutes. Removefrom heat and add 1 Vz cups dicedma r s h ma l lo w s , 1 Vi cups semi-sweetchocolate chips, 1 teaspoon van il laand V2 cup chop ped, blanc hed al-monds. Stir 1 or 2 minutes or untilmarshmallows melt . Pour into but-tered square 9- inch pan and cool.

Cut into bars Vi b y Ws inches longan d roll in 1 cup flaked coconut.


4 cups sugar1 can condensed milk3 tablespoons corn syrup1 cup chopped da tes1 tablespoon vanil la1 tablespoon butier2 cups chopped nuts

Cook sugar , milk ar id syrup to verysoft ball sta ge on low hea t. Ad dchopped dates and cook until firmball s tage is reached, st ir r ing occa-

sionally. Take off stove and addbutter . When almost cool, addvanilla and bea t un ti l c reamy. Addnuts and make into long rolls . Wraprolls in damp cloth until set, thenroll in chopped nuts and store inaluminum foil .


1 cup brown suga r1 cup granula ted sugar1 tab lespoon cocoa

Vi cup corn syrup3A cup rich milkVi teaspoon salt

2 /3 cup chopped nut mea ts1 teaspoon vani l laIn a medium s ize saucepan 'combinesugars, cocoa, cam syrup, milk a n dsalt . Cover pan and br ing to a boilquickly. Uncover, and cock until asmall amount dropped into coldwater forms a soli ball. (220 degress).Remove from heat and cool to roomtemperature . Add nuts and vanil la .Beat until thick and creamy. Turnout onto buttered surface and kneadwell. Form into a roll. Wrap inwa xed p ape r. Chill. Cut into slices.The kneading makes i t very c r e a my .

! In making candy, test your ther-mometer by placing if in boil ingwater. 212 is the normal boiling point.If not accurate, subtract or edd re-q ui re d d e g re es . . " • '. .•;: •-?> ' :


3 cups v/alnut halvesVi cup light corn syrupVi cup wa te r

1 cup sugar1 teaspoon peppermint essence

10 mcrshmal lows

Place syrup, water and sugar insauce pan and cook over mediumheat stirring constantly. Cook untilsoft ball stage. Remove from heat,add peppermint e ssence and marsh-mallo ws a nd stir quickly unti l marsh-mal lows have d isso lved . Add wa l-nuts and stir to coat them. Pour ontowaxed paper and separa te nuts wi tha fork.


2 cups sugar1 cup white Karo

% cup water

Butter the size of a walnut1 1b. raw pea nu ts

Cook all ingredients until a faintblue haze rises, and the mixture isa medium brown. Cook slowly sothat it doesn't bum and stir constant-ly in the final sta ge . Rem ove fromfire. Ou ickly stir in 1 hea pin g tea-spoon sod a and 1 teaspoon vanil la .Pour immediately into shallow but-te red pans .


2 cups pure maple syrup

2 cups brown sugar2 cups whole pecansV2 cup butterVi cup water

Stir sugar, water, syrup and buttertogether over slow heat until sugaris thoroughly dissolved. Add thepecans and boil unti l the mixtureforms a hard ball when tested Incold water . Have ready a large slab,well buttered. Drop mixture like pan-cakes, a l lowing them to spread about1/3" thick and 5" in diameter. Workquickly so candy will not get hardbefore pa t tie s a re m ade .

O C " 1 3 8 3

PRAXINES1 Vi cups brown sugar

1 cup granulated sugarV2 1b. peca nsVi teaspoon salt

Boil all ingredients to soft ball stage(236 degrees), stirring constantly.Cool slightly and beat until mixturebe gi ns to stiffen. Drop rap idly froma spoon onto a buttered pan in pat-ties abo ut 2 in. in diameter. If can dybecomes too stiff at the last io makesmooth patties, add a little hot waier.Ma kes 12 patt ies.


2 cups sugar1 square butter (cut up)1 pi. white Karo syrup

Mix and let come to boil at medium-he at. Then pou r in slowly 1 pt. whip-ping cream. Cook to semi-hard ballstage. Pour into greased pan. Whenfirm, cut into thin rectangles andw rap individually in wax paper .Twist pa pe r ends. For chocola te car-amels, add 2 square chocolate .

TOASTED ALMOND CRUNCHV-i cup butter (1 cube)

2 /3 cup sugar1 V2 tablespoons water

2 teaspoons l ight com syrupVi cup coarsely chopped, toasted,

b lanched a lmondsVi 1b. milk chocolateVi cup finely chopped toasted,

b lanched a lmondsMelt butter in heavy pan. Stir in su-gar , corn syrup, water and coarselychopped almonds. Cook unti l hardcrack stage is reached (290 degrees)stirring only slightly to keep from

burning. The mixture will turn c:golden color. Turn candy into a•warm 8-inch square pan. When cold,turn from pan onto wax paper. Meltc h o c o l a t e s l o w l y o v e r l u k e w a r m

water Remove from heat and stiruntil cool, but still soft. Spread a thinlayer over one side of candy andsprinkle lightly with half of the finelychopped nuts. Lay a piece of w axpaper on fop and turn the c a n d yover. Coat the other side with re-ma in in g chocolate and sprinkle withnuts. When chocolate is hard, breakinto pieces.


3 9

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* & ' • • • - ; •• ; • ; ••""•• v i K it C a r s o n o j le n to o k his A r a p a h o e

;./;:•••• ' J \ : ' - p - y '•• .'I wi\e end s m a ll d a u g ht er , A d e l i n e ,:

; , j : ; •;

^ ' . / r . •• • ; . - • • ] on his trapping expeditions.

• By CHARLES KELLYI l l u s t r a t i o n b y J o h n H a n s e n

DRY Fork canyon at the foot of_ i / the Uintah mountains, Uintah coun-

ty, Utah, the Hall family had a smallranch and kept what was called a roadhouse or stopping place for travelers. Thetrail over the mountains was not often usedin 1S90 and guests at the Hall roadhousewere few.

One evening near sundown, a lone ridercame down the trail. lie was an old man,

tall and bony, riding a decrepit old horse,followed by two rangy greyhounds. Hiscap was made of beaver fur and his clothesof buckskin, worn and greasy. On his feetwere a pair of well worn moccasins andcradled in one arm was a long-barreledKentucky rifle.

That was Uncle Louis Simonds as HenryHall remembers him. The boy enjoyedthese occasional visits. After a good supper

L o u i e S i m o n d s w a s a c o m p a n -ion of Jim Dridger arid son-in-lawof Ki t Ca rso n. He ro de in to Uintah .ba si n in 1831 with the fur br i-g a d e . H o l i v e d i n T a o s w h e n i tw a s the r e nde z vou s of t he moun-t a in me n . A l l t ha t se e m s a n c ie n tw e s t e r n history, bu t me n in U m-ia l i ba s in tod a y s ti ll r e me m be rold . Uncl e Louie , w h o l ive d a lo i io

i n t h e m o u n t a i n s . F r o m theirm e m o r i e s a n d o t h e r s o u r c e sC he r r i e s K e l ly ha s p i e c e d to -ge the r the s to ry o* a westernp i o n e e r

the old man would sit by the fireplace andSpin tall yarns of Indian fights, bear fightsand big sprees with other early day moun-tain men in Santa Fe. Uncle Louie, as hewas known to everyone in Uintah county,was a relic of the old fur brigade. Heclaimed having come to the Uintah basinas a boy of 14 with the first group of whitetrappers. He spoke of Jim Bridger and Kit

Carson with familiarity.The Hall boys hardly knew what to be-

lieve in his tales, but Louie Simonds was atrapper and he was Kit Carson's son-in-law. Kit Carson, most famous of all themountain men was married to a youngArapahoe woman \Vaa-nibe, or SingingGrass. She died at Bent's fort about 1838,leaving a daughter two years old. Likeother early trappers, Carson had taken hiswife and child with him on many trappingexpeditions. Singing Grass pitched histepee, did his cooking and looked after hishorses, carrying the child on a cradleboardon her back. When his wife died Carsoncould not care for the baby, and left her

with some of her Indian relatives.

In 1840 he married again, a Cheyennegirl called Making Out Road, to havesomeone to look after his baby daughter.But the high spirited Cheyenne girl tiredof playing stepmother and left him with-in a year.

By this time Ki t Carson was famous,' a 'man of some substance with a house inSanta Fe. He thought of settling down anddicln't want another Indian wife if he wasto become a permanent citizen of Santa Fe.He had a young Spanish girl in mind butknew she would object to being stepmotherto his halfbreed daughter.

With his young daughter Kit Carsonwent back to St. Louis in 1S42. Returningto his old home in Howard county, Mis-souri, he left Adeline with his sister, Eliza-beth. After making provision for her careand education, he returned to Santa Fe andin 1S43 married Maria Josefa Jamarillo,then 14 years old.

Adeline Carson remained in Missouriuntil she was 13, attending school at Fay-ette. In 1S51 Carson went to Missouri tobring his daughter back to Santa Fe. Shew a s , he thought, nearly old enough to be

O C T 1933 <

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married flnd had already acquired a muchbetter education than he r father. Accom-panied by a small party, Kit started backover the Santa I'e trail. In the vicinity ofthe Cimarron, his party was attacked byCheyeanes, and only Kit's quick thinkingsaved them from being massacred.

In Santa Fe Adeline Jived with herfather in his new home. But his Spanishwife, Josefa, herself only 22 years old, maynot have been too happy over this arrange-ment, particularly since the girl was half

Indian. At any rate Adeline was marriedthe next year, 1852, to Louie Simondt atTaos. Th e couple left immediately forCalifornia.

Louie Simonds was 33 years old whenhe married Adeline Carson—eight yearsyounger than he r father. He was a wellknown trapper in Santa Fe and 1 aos. Hewas born somewhere in Kentucky in 1817and his full name was Luther W. Simonds.He had joined the old fur brigade as a boyof 14 and in 1831 accompanied a group ofolder trappers into the Uintah basin wherehe met and traded with A ntoine Robidoux.That was the year of Robidoux's first ex-pedition to the Uintah country and he hadnot yet built his trading post.

That is about all we know of Simonds'activities until 1846, when he was found inSanta Fe and Taos by Lewis H. Garrard,author of Wak-to-Yah ami the Taos T rail.By that time Simonds was known as one ofthe best trappers in the Rocky mountains, awild, brave, carefree mountain man, full oftall yarns and never hesitant in telling ofhis own exp loits.

Presumably, Kit approved of Adeline'smarriage to Simonds. No doubt Adelinewas physically well developed at 14, full ofspirit and half wild in spile of her school-ing. Kit had married Josefa when she was14 and probably believed it would be wellto have his young daughter married to a

man wh o could supporl her.Afier 1840 the business of trapping bi d

declined until by 1852 it was no longerprofitable. But gold had been discovered

. in California in 1848, and thousands werestill rushing to the golden state. LouieSimonds decided to try his luck in Cali-fornia.

Like many other trappers, Simondsconic! neither read nor write, but Adelinehad a good common school education. Fora while she kept in touch with her fatherand her aunt in Missouri. Then the lettersceased coming and Kit lost track of hermovements.

Conditions in gold-crazy California

were radically different from those insleepy old Santa Fe. Louie Simonds seemsto have found himself out of place in thaidizzy whirl. All his life he had hunted aniltrapped. Mining gold did not appeal tohim. Adeline, however, seems to have en-joyed her new surroundings. We can easilyguess what happened. Her husband was Joyears old, and the bright lights of Cali-fornia's mushroom cities did not appeal to

him. She was 15, at an age when she want-ed to be on the go every minute. She soonmet a man with younger ideas and ranaway with him.

Thousands of miners were rushingacross California from one reported striketo another, seldom staying long in oneplace. In that wild melee it might seem animpossible task to trace the movements ofany one or two persons. But Louie Si-monds had tracked m any a grizzly bear andmany a Blackfoot Indian. The trail was

hard to follow, but he followed it persis-tently, year after year. At last he foundAdeline and her sweetheart in Mono Dig-gings where in 1859 she was known asPrairie Flower, Kit Carson's daughter.Without making his presence known hecarefully studied the situation, then laidin wait. When the time was ripe, he gentlypressed the hair trigger of his Kentuckyrifle. They buried the man next day, butno one ever knew who had killed him.

With this matter off his mind Louie Si-monds was ready to return to the moun-tains. But where? If he went back to TaosKit Carson might ask embarrassing ques-tions. Some of his old trapper friends hadsettled in various parts of the west. JimBridger had. a fort on the em igrant trail,but Louie didn't want to be near a trav-eled road. He finally decided on the Uin-tah mountains, where he had first come asa young boy with the old fur brigade. Itwas one of the wildest spots in the west,far from the usual routes of travel. Robi-doux's post had been burned and no whitemen were left in Uintah basin.

So Louie Simonds went back to the Uin-tahs and hid himself in Brown's Hole,used by Indians and a handful of half-breeds left in the wake of the fur brigadeas a winter camp. He had' a horse, a pairof greyhounds, a few traps and his Ken-tucky rifle. He knew how to live off the

country That was in the fall of 1S59.For 20 years Louie Simonds lived in the

mountains more like an Indian than awhite man. His old cronies supposed hewas dead. Then, when he came out of themountains in the spring of 1879, he dis-covered white settlers had moved into Uin-tah basin in their covered wagons to farmthe flat valley along Uintah river. A troopof soldiers had formed an encampment atwhat they called Fort Duchcsnc, to protectthe settlers from marauding Utes, who hadjust massacred the Meeker family in Colo-rado. His splendid isolation was at an end.

Uncle Louie was no longer worriedabout the dead man at Mono Diggings,

but he had lived alone so long he had nodesire to adjust himself to new conditions.He continued to live in a rude cabin in themountains, eating nothing but wild meat,trapping a little and trading his pelts atFort Bridger for powder, lead, and some-times a little coffee and sugar.

As years passed he became a familiarfigure in the Uintah basin. He sometimesmade a winter camp near a ranch and on

his infrequent trips through the valley wasalways welcomed by the settlers. He toldthem only so much of his past as he cared-to . Only trusted friends, like Pete Dillmanand Finn Bri't, ever learned why he livedalone in the mo untains. •

As he grcv,' older he was afflicted withpalsy but lie shot his rifle with a "doublewobble" as Bill Williams said, andbrought down plenty of game. At bars inthe frontier town of Venial he had to sipwhiskey from a glass sitting on the bar be-

cause his hands were too unsteady to carrythe glass to his lips. No one knew his agebut they guessed he must be nearly a hun-dred, lie seemed to be as much a part ofthe country as the mountains.

In the winter of 1893, Uncle Louie livedin a little log shack in a canyon aboveWhite Rocks Ute Indian agency. He-would ride down to the trading post oc-casionally for supplies or to spin yarns.Then a heavy snow fell and he was not seenfor several weeks. In the spring soldiershunting a strayed horse passed bis cabinand found the old man helpless in his bed,nearly starved to death and suffering fromfrostbite. They took him to the militaryhospital at Fort Dudlesne where lie re-mained several weeks. 13ut his long sick-ness bad affected his mine) and he wassent to the Utah state mental hospital atProve.

The duly of conveying him fell toGeorge Searle, then sheriff of Uintah coun-ty. Searle loaded him into a light wagonand in March, 1894, hauled the old manto Provo. He was entered as a patient onMarch 8, 1894, said to be suffering fromsenile dementia. But Uncle Louie wasn'tquite finished.

On October 1, 1894 he was dischargedfrom the hosptial as cured. There is no rec-ord of where he went or when he died.Oid-timers in the basin declare lie never re-

turned to his oid haunts. On his way to theProvo hospital he gave Sheriff Seaii'j abundle of papers and letters for safe-keeping. He never returned to claim them.Searle, who still lives in the basin, kept thepapers for many years, but they finallywere lost. Perhaps they contained lettersfrom Adeline Carson, the Prairie Flower.She died in 1860 and was buried on theshore of Mono lake. J-Ier friends plannedto erect a monument over her grave, but itwas never done and the spot has been for-gotten. '

In his book Wah-lo-Y,:h, Lewis II. Gar-rard tells many yarns about Louie Simondswho, with his friend Hatcher, another

mountain man. guided Gairard in his trav-els around Santa Fe and Taos. Louie was29 years old then, a seasoned mountaineerand trapper.

That seems long, long ago- -ancient his-tory in western America. Yet in the Uintahbasin many old-timers like George Searleand the Hail brothers clearly rememberUncle Louie Simonds, son-in-law of KitCarson.

41 T nU .


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Pioneering inSilver CityH. B. Ailman's RecollectionsofTerritorial New Mexico


Edited and Annotated byHelen]. Lundwall

Harry B.Ailcnan. l ike thousands o( otheradventurous yourt£ men.cam* west to seekhis fortune in (IHI iate IKrtJs. I Ic is wt j p j r tfrom these cuumless uihers nul |ust bttCBUMhe struck it rich, butbecause he !i*:t antnvaiuabu* firsthand account of his trek westam i oi h;s life as a miner , merchant , an dbanker in southwestern New Mexico.Discovered and published nearly a centuryafter it was written, this memoir is anauthentic and detailed account ot the hardwork, persistence and luck required tosucceed in commerce in that era.

Accompanying the engaging text ore tensketches. SLXtetffi phutui j rapns , an d dturmaps .

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Among tlw sixty-two ghost towns described, nearly twentyare "unknown," seldom visited, never before written about,mysterious in origin and location. The author ruis researchedan*] stud!ed the remains ot* those "unkn own " sites and talkedwith those olil-timt-M'.T who coultl btifound. The book, describingthi* ghost, towns of five Western states, will appeal to anyonewho appreciates a good story, as well as to insatiable search-era for remnants ofthe Old UVst.

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Under the Mountainby Molly Kn udtsenThis collection of vignettes about life in Central Nevada ismuch more than a historical document. Says Knudtsen,

"These are the stories neighbors and families tell, where factgrows just a little larger than life. This is the stuff of legend."The author shares her experiences ofriding horseback throughsome of the rich archaeological areas of the valley. She di-vulges the secret ofconverting flour, yeast, and potato waterinto theperfect loaf ofbread. And hrough colorful anecdotes,she passes along the egendary accounts ofColonel Dave Buel."Molly Knud tsen has developed a collection ofgems and hass t rung them a long Centra l Nevada ' s brace le t of charm. . . Under the Mountain is more t han a book; itis an experience.""Nevada State Journal. IS3N 072-9, 130 p$s.. HIus.. $10.50

Nevada Place Names: AGeographic Dictionaryby Helen S. CarlsonA curious passion forattaching names not only to towns but toevery physical landmark has existed in all ages ofman. It tookHelen Carlson fourteen years ofresearch to uncover the originof some of Nevada ' s most obscure place names: HorseHeaven, Alcatraz island. Purgatory Peak, Starvation Flat, and

Puny Dip Canyon, toname a few. The book contains historicalfact peppered with folklore, andsometimes frustrating leadsthat end in mystery. "Atreasure trove tor the Western historyaficionado." — L?n? Stack Independent Press-Telegram. ISBN041-9. 232 pgs., $15.00

The Journals of Alfred Doten, 1S49-1903Edited byWalter Van Tilburg Clark

A truly unique documentation of the early West byAlfredDoten. an influential newspaperman on the Comstock Lode.

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Th e Nevada Adventure: AHistory (5th ed.)by James HulseA history ofon e of the most colorful states in theUnion. Hulsetraces man's experience through the rugged terrain ofNevadafrom prehistory to the atomic age, including Nevada's dra-matic growth in tourism and industry and the state's concernfor ecology and human rights. Hulse also follows the earlyexplorers of the Great Basin and the ordeals of the first imm i-grants. "An excellent summary of the state 's past." -BookExchange. ISBN067-2,282 p$s.r iilus., $9.00

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