Historic Prescott, AZ: Home to Virgil Earp, Whiskey Row & World’s Oldest Rodeo

Roundtree’s and Dickson’s saloons were crowded with customers, and we will not say how much whiskey was disposed of–it might surprise our temperate friends in Tucson and La Paz. Nobody was hurt, but the boys waxed very merry, and some of them very tipsy, and there was no little promiscuous firing of revolvers… Prescott Arizona Miner Newspaper, July 6, 1864

I am blessed to reside in Prescott, Arizona, twice the capital of Arizona in Territorial Days. Founded in 1864, the town of Prescott quickly became a popular destination for many and remains so today.

When people think of the Old West, Tombstone, Arizona, famously comes to mind, and rightfully so. The legend of the Earp brothers certainly made it the historical landmark it is today. Founded by a mining prospector who discovered silver in 1877, it quickly turned into a rough and tumble sort of place and proved to be one of the last boom towns on the Western Frontier.

bird_cage

Bird Cage Theatre, Circa 1937, Tombstone, Arizona–Courtesy Library of Congress

Sadly, there isn’t much left of Tombstone today–save the tourist traps. But even the tourist traps are far from what they used to be decades ago in the 1960s and 1970s. I visited there about seven years ago, only to be disappointed and disheartened at how much it really had changed and not for the better–shops had closed, many were up for sale, and the Bird Cage Theatre, now a museum, no longer had the shows (featuring shootouts and costumed dance hall girls) that I fondly remembered years ago. Contrast Tombstone with the vibrant, lively, bustling, small town of Prescott and you’ll find a town that is every bit as historically rich as Tombstone (arguably more so), Earp brothers and all.

Continue reading

She Sleeps: Meet Julia K. Johnson!

Those of you who read my blog know that I research and write about dead people. It’s my passion and it’s my way of honoring their memory (whether deserved or not) and to perhaps–hopefully–connect these sleeping dead with descendants that are living today.

I long to discover old photographic evidence of my own ancestors and have yet to do so. For now, I am satisfied in making other families happy with the discovery of precious relics they can add to their ancestry puzzle.

Continue reading

Guess Who’s Coming to Thanksgiving Dinner?

Abraham Lincoln on November 8, 1863

Abraham Lincoln–Nov. 8, 1863-One month after his Thanksgiving Proclamation and a little more than a week before he gave the Gettysburg Address

It was the month of October 1863.

A silvery, Indian Summer haze drifted over the White House as the leaves on the trees, starved of summer’s extended light, were beginning to turn vibrant shades of red, orange, and yellow.

And the American Civil War was raging.

Continue reading

The Deer Hunt Begins: Shhh! We Have to Be Quiet Now

We left for the hunt on Friday morning.

The clock read 3:48 a.m. as I said goodbye to my dogs and followed my husband out of the house.

(I hadn’t slept much. I wasn’t at all ready for the wicked 2:30 a.m. wake-up call from my husband’s ancient and much-hated-by-me alarm clock. Bright-eyed-and busy-tailed, I was not.)

We hopped into our trusty, 1983 Jimmy, permanently marked with plenty of Desert pinstriping, and headed out.

Continue reading

A Godly Confederate Hero…A Yankee Officer and a Sword

Lt. Colonel Thomas Marshal, 7th Virginia Cavalryl

Lt. Colonel Thomas Marshall, 7th Virginia Cavalry, Aide to Stonewall Jackson

Colonel Thomas A. Marshall, Jr., was a Confederate soldier in the American Civil War.

He was also a believer in the one true God and demonstrated his devotion to his Lord and Savior on and off the battlefield.

He served mightily and valiantly  in the 7th Cavalry along side General Turner Ashby and he also served as an aid to the venerable, Stonewall Jackson (more on Marshall’s contributions below).

Continue reading

A Secret Revealed: Two Lovers and a Solemn Written Promise

Edith Durer--A Secret Solemn PromiseDid you know that there was a time when promises actually meant something?

I came across this exceedingly rare, handwritten “engagement of marriage agreement” in an enormous letter archive from the mid-19th century.

The agreement was penned by then 18 year-old, Edith Durer. She was born in 1852 in Baltimore, Maryland. She was well-educated and her family quite prominent.

Continue reading

Resurrecting the Forgotten: Her Name Could Have Been Gladys

Resurrecting MemoriesIt’s Saturday.

And besides having this irresistible urge to bake a great big, juicy apple pie, there’s really little else I feel like doing.

After feeding my pooches, I sat down at my desk with a nice hot cup of Joe in hand and wondered what in the world I should blog today.

Something lighthearted. Nothing heavy or too serious. Because it’s Saturday after all. Continue reading

Delivered Into the Hands of a Woman…Deborah the Great!

Deborah the ProphetessI am reading the Book of Judges.

It’s a page-turner.

I just can’t put it down.

The more I read of the biblical personalities described, the more I want to know them.

I am particularly fascinated with the story of the fearless, wise, and courageous Deborah (2654-2694 BC).

Continue reading

A Holy Transaction and A Treasure Delivered: The Life of Isaac J. Rosenberger

Isaac J. Rosenberger, Church of the Brethren

Isaac J. Rosenberger

I collect dead people’s things.

Just a few months ago, a Bible was delivered to my mailbox that once belonged to a 19th century traveling Mennonite preacher.

A lady had advertised that she was going to toss the Bible in the trash if she didn’t sell it soon. What? I said. Toss God’s Holy Word in the trash? May it never be! The lady said she was moving and couldn’t be bothered with it any longer.

Continue reading

I’ll Meet Her at the Resurrection…A Song from One Who Sleeps

Handwritten Lyrics by Thankful A. Leonard, Plymouth Mass.

The Land of Canaan, by Thankful A. Leonard, Plymouth, Massachusetts, 1834

I love history, especially U.S. History. I write about it a lot.

Sadly, its a stark reminder of who we used to be as a people, and who we are are no longer.

It really wasn’t that long ago that we relied on God for our help.

We used to pray and give thanks to God for our country–the very God that brought us protection, wealth, and prosperity. And I’m not talking about the god of Islam (or any other god that people may serve in the U.S. today). I am referring to YHWH [Yahweh] the one true God, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

Continue reading