Genealogy Trails

Yuma County, Arizona
Biographies

It is difficult to write about the more noted people of this great city.
Many families and many persons have contributed many things to the progress and growth of Yuma.
But among the many, these people will long be remembered:

BOEHRINGER, C. Louise, (Miss), a native of Illinois, daughter of J. F. and Louise Boehringer, a resident of Arizona for 15 years. Educational Journalist. Studied and secured degrees from Columbia University and California State University at Berkeley. Has held several positions as instructor in Springfield, Ill., University of Missouri, Columbia, Mo. and as County Superintendent of Schools. Yuma, Arizona. First woman to hold such an elective office in Arizona. For two ^..sessions Member of State Legislature and Chairman of Committee on Education. Former National VicePresident (for Arizona) of Business and Professional Women's Clubs, Vicepresident for Arizona National League of American Pen Women. For twelve years, editor of The Arizona Teacher. Editor of the Arizona ParentTeacher Bulletin. Free Lance Writer. State Chairman, Better Homes in America. Member: National League of American Pen Women, American Ass'n of University Women, National and State Business and Professional Women's Clubs, Arizona Federation of Women's Clubs, N. E. A. Present address: P. O. Box, 1006, Phoenix, Ariz. Home: Yuma, Arizona
[Women of the West by Max Binheim 1928 -- Submitted by Barb Z]
Added 8 Sep 2013

POST, Mary Elizabeth, (Miss), born June 17, 1841, in Elizabethtown, New York, daughter of Asa H. and Calneh R. Amesi Post, a resident of Arizona for 56 years. Educator. Taught Latin, French and Higher Mathematics in several Iowa schools; taught in the Yuma public schools for 36 years; pension through Act of First State Legislature; at present gives private lessons, specializes in English to foreigners; has taught people of every race. Received Masters Degree, University of Arizona, many years ago. Helped to organize the first club in Yuma. Member: Delta Club. Home: 550 Second Ave., Yuma, Ariz.
[Women of the West by Max Binheim 1928 -- Submitted by Barb Z]
Added 8 Sep 2013

ROCKWOOD, Edith Daggett (Mrs.), born in Klamath Falls, Oregon, 1884, daughter of M. H. and Rose Daggett (descendants of the colonial Putnam family). Married to G. H. Rockwood. Children: George Daggett, Hawley McGee. Writer. Has contributed to Arizona newspapers and is a magazine writer. Author of a collection of poems. Organizer, Yuma, Arizona, Business and Professional Women's Club Member: Woman's Athletic Club of Alameda County, Oakland, Calif., National League of American Penwomen. Organizer of Pioneer's Club of Arizona F. W. C. Present Address: 2236 Haste St., Berkeley, Calif. Home: Yuma, Arizona.
[Women of the West by Max Binheim 1928 -- Submitted by Barb Z]
Added 8 Sep 2013

WESTOVER, J. H. (Mrs.), born in Williamstown, Kentucky, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. H. C. Musselman, a former resident of Kentucky, living in Arizona for twenty years. Married to J. H. Westover. Children: William H Harry C Representative of County in Legislature of 191921, and in a special session when women of Arizona were given the ballot. Member: Delta Club Business and Professional Women's Club. Home: 837 Orange Avenue, Yuma. Arizona.
[Women of the West by Max Binheim 1928 -- Submitted by Barb Z]
Added 8 Sep 2013


SAMUEL "STEAMBOAT* ADAMS, (b. Pennsylvania, 1828; d. Arizona, 1915). Arrived Arizona 1863, and built deep well at south end of Castle Dome Mountains. Claimed to have been first man to make trip through Grand Canyon. Was a staunch advocate of making the Colorado River navigable for ocean going vessels.



FERNANDO DE ALARCON, Spanish Admiral in charge of Francisco de Coronado's supply fleet. Was the first white man to enter what is today Yuma County. He sailed up the Colorado River as far as the mouth of the Gila during the year 1540.



PHILIP TEDRO, camel driver who accompanied the U. S. Army camels from the Middle East to this country. He arrived in Arizona with the Beale Expedition of 1856, and remained after the experiment failed. He in some manner obtained several of the Beale camels and continued to use them in freight service in southern Arizona until 1868. At that time, he turned the camels loose on the desert near Gila Bend and they or their descendants were reported in the Ajo area as late as 1925. After the abortive camel experiment, the remaining camels not sold or destroyed, were turned loose to wander as they pleased on the Yuma Military Reservation (1859).



MODESTI ALTHEE, Born in Corsica, came to work in his father's store at the age of eighteen. He was a longtime successful merchant and property owner. He had the gift of tongues for he could speak Spanish, Papago, Apache, Chinese, Japanese, German, Italian, Greek, and Portuguese.



MYRON ANGEL, Founder of Olive City Bradshaw's Ferry.



WILLIAM ANKRIM, Originally a sheep drover, Capt. William Ankrim is credited with driving more than 22,000 from Arizona to the Coast. Was involved in ar least one Indian battle, killing nearly forty Indians while losing five of his own party. Became a steamboat pilot and went into partnership with William Jaeger, operating a ferry across the Colorado River. Later Ankrim bought out Capt. George A. Johnson's interest in the ferry company. He died in March, 1859



THOMAS W. BALES, Rancher who owned several wells in the vicinity of Bradford Well.



HIRAM W. BLAISDELL, Engineered two canals (possibly the first two) in the Yuma area.



IRA BLAISDELL, (circa 1879). Manager of both Southern Pacific Railroad's and Yuma water supply.



GEORGE BOUSE, A miner and truck gardener turned land promoter. In 1909, he purchased 1,600 acres of land near present day Bouse, and formed the Bouse Townsite, Land and Improvement Company.



THOMAS BOUSE,   Trader and storekeeper. Seemingly no relation to George.



JOSEPH BOYER,   Mine owner.



ISAAC AND WILLIAM D. BRADSHAW, Ferry operators on the Colorado River at Olive City ne Bradshaw's Ferry.



SAMUEL BUTLER, (circa 1888). A miner who with his brother (name unknown) maintained a well which supplied water to the Clara (Swansea) mine.



T. J. CARRIGAN,   A prospector in the Swansea Mining District.



JIM CHAPPO,   Operated a "cattle ranch" in the Pinto Mountains.



THOMAS NEWTON CLANTON, Arrived at Big Bug (Yavapai County), Arizona, from Missouri in 1877. Moved to Phoenix, 1880. Contracted to build ten miles of canal near Buckeye, 1885. Moved to Buckeye, 1888. Dug well in eastern Yuma County named after him.



HENRY A. CRABBE, Established a place called Filibuster's Camp. Head of Filibustering Expedition into Mexico. Crabbc and seventy some men defeated Mexican army contingent in battle at Caborca, Sonora, Mexico, in April, 1854, but were beseiged in town. When Crabbc and men surrendered they were executed and Crabbe's head "pickled" in mescal for display.



CHARLES C. CULLING, Operated a stage station where road from Ehrenberg forked to go to Wickenburg.



CHARLES CUNNINGHAM, (circa 1860-1871). An ex-sailor, he became a miner in what is present day Yuma County. A friend of the Indians, he nevertheless was ambushed and killed in Bell's Canyon on May 3, 1871.



ALBERT E. DeCORSE, One of the most remembered of all of the figures of Yuma's history during the latter half of the 19th century is Dr. Albert DeCorse. He established the DeCorse name and its heritage in Yuma's history in the years proceeding 1868. Dr. Albert DeCorse set up his medical practice in Yuma in the early 1860s. He was married to a Yuma Indian Princess named Maria de Luce Diaz and it was a very happy marriage. Since Mrs. DeCorse could speak five languages and the Doctor could speak Spanish, French, English, and Indian, there fortunately were no language barriers to obstruct his work. Since a large percent of the wealth of the city was due to mining, DeCorse received mostly gold nuggets in payment for his doctoring fees. This dedicated family had six children, five boys and one girl. Dr. DeCorse died on June 1, 1891, at the age of 57.



MELCHOIR DIAZ, One of Coronado's Captains who reached Yuma shortly after de Alarcon, probably either in September or October, 1540.

JOHN B. DOW,   Made postmaster of Colorado City, December 2, 1857.



JOSEPH DREW, Later operator of Culling (also known as Cullin's) stage station, who kept lantern above well frame so that thirsty wanderers could sec their way at night to water.



R. J. DUNCAN,   Owned the townsite of Laguna, circa 1894.



DR. C A. EATON, Developed "rhermal springs" at a place now known as RADIUM HOT Springs. The development was not a success.



A. J. EDDY, Born in Shelby, Michigan, in 1879, and started the first taxi service in Bouse, Arizona, around 1912. Admitted to the bar in 1918, he practiced law in Yuma. Around 1934, he built the first evaporative cooler in Yuma. For years he acted as a sort of "consultant" for those who wanted to build or maintain their evaporative coolers in the Yuma area.



HERMAN EHRENBERG, (b. Germany; d. Dos Palmas, California, October, 1866). Graduate of Freyburg University, Germany. Town of Ehrenberg named after him. Founded town of Mineral City, on Colorado River in 1863- Shot and killed on San Bernardino-La Paz road, 1866.



CHARLES E. EICHELBERGER, discovered King of Arizona Mine (K. of F. ne KOfA) in 1896. Developed this mine in partnership with Epes Randolph.



JUAN FERRA, Discoverers of rich placer gold deposits near La Paz



DON JOSE M. REDONDO, and Ferra Gulch in February, 1862. A gold rush ensued and lasted until placer mining was exhausted in 1864.



ROBERT GAEL, Employed by Southern Pacific Railroad to pump water to place that became known as Gael.



FR. FRANCISCO GARCES, A Franciscan Friar, Garces arrived in Yuma on December 4, 1775. He named the place "Pueblo de la Concepcion" and established a mission for the Indians. He was murdered by followers of the Yuma Chieftain, Palma, on July 17, 1781.



HAROLD NORMAN GORDON, MD., Highly esteemed and well known obstetrician and gynecologist in the Yuma area. Born on January 2, 1922, in Ely, Minnesota. Present Chief of Staff of Parkview Baptist Hospital, former President of the Yuma County Medical Association. Awarded American Medical Association "Humanitarian Service Plaque," for volunteer service in South Vietnam, Honorary member of Medical Society of Ecuador and Peru for two months volunteer medical service rendered aboard the U.S.S. Hope, member of Board of Yuma County OEO, honorary member of the Arizona Western College Latin American Club, 1963-66, medical representative on ad hoc committee on Narcotics and dangerous Drugs Use for the local Yuma School system, chairman Yuma County TB Association, former chairman Human Relations Committee for the City of Yuma, member of City of Yuma Police Selection Board, Democratic precinct committeeman, member Arizona State Democratic Central Committee, member of Flying Samaritans, member of Yuma County Mental Health Board. Presently in practice in Yuma with Dr. Martin Cohen.



EARNEST HALL, Two brothers who were partners of Charles H. Pratt in the



DICK WICK HALL, establishment of the community of SALOME. D. W. HALL, a wit of some repute, was editor of the local newspaper and is credited with the slogan, "Salome where she danced." He said that when MRS. GRACE SALOME PRATT took her shoes oif, the ground was so hot it burned her feet, hence the slogan.



CAPT. CHARLES HARRIS, Canadian who fought for the North in the Civil War. Established town of Harrisburg, three miles west of present day Salome, on site of Indian massacre of 1849. (1892 map shows this place as Harqua Hala!)



MRS. WILLIAM HARRISON, Established grove of date palms at present day Date-land. (1930).



COLONEL HARWOOD, A member of the Gila Canal Company and friend to steamboat caDtain. Caot. Tack Mellen.



NORMAN HINDLE, Born in Bradford, England, he emigrated to the United States in 1918, and settled near San Diego, California. After a successful stint in business in Calexico, California, he arrived in Yuma, in 1925. In managing the Imperial Hardware store in Yuma, he was instrumental in marketing the evaporative cooler in large numbers. He made Yuma a more comfortable place to live in during the hot summer months.



FRANCIS HINTON,   First postmaster of Yuma, October 1, 1866.



WILLIAM HOLBERT, Co-discoverers of LaFortuna Mine, 1893.



CHARLES THOMAS,



ANTHONY G. HUBBARD, Discoverer and operator, along with a man named Bowers, of the CLIP MINE. The two men operated this mine between 1880 and 1887, reportedly recovering more than a million dollars in silver.



LOUIS JAEGER,   Established a ferry at Yuma on June 28, 1849-



CAPT. FRANK S. INGALLS, (b. Maine, 1851; d. Arizona, 1927). Came to Arizona in 1882, in the capacity of Surveyor General of the Territory. Was appointed head of the Territorial Prison at Yuma in 1883. Established an experimental farm at what is known today as Ingalls Lagoon.



LT. JOSEPH CHRISTMAS IVES, U. S. Army officer who explored Yuma area 1857-1858.



JOHN KILLBRIDE, Established and built the stage station at Mission Camp in 1860. Sold his interest in the station in December 1870.



FR. EUSEBIO FRANCISCO KINO, A Jesuit Priest, Kino visited the Yuma area in 1691, 1700, and 1701.



PAT LINSKEY, Track foreman of the Arizona and Swansea Railroad after whom Linskey was named.



JOHN BRAYTON MARTIN, Owner of the Brayton Commercial Company, the store for the Harqua Hala Mine.



GABRIEL MARTINEZ, Last of the "Spanish Gentlemen." He owned a large ranch under what is now MARTINEZ Lake.



JAMES McMULLEN,   Sometimes stage driver (Yuma to Ehrenberg) and prospector.



LT. N. MICHLER, U. S. Army officer who extensively explored the Yuma area during the year 1853.



FRANK MING,   Mayor of Yuma circa the 1920s.



MAX B. NOAH, A Texan with a penchant for tall stories, owned the first gas station at TACNA.



GEORGE W. NORTON, (b. Indiana, August 9, 1843; d. Yuma, Arizona, "about" 1912). Bridge builder turned miner, he owned the Pacifiic and Silent Mines. He later entered politics in Arizona, took up farming and entered real estate.



J. FRED NOTTBUSCH,   Owned the small community of Palomas.



DAVID O'NEILL, A wandering prospector, after whom O'Neill Pass was named. Died of exposure and over-exertion (some accounts indicate drowning) after encountering a severe desert storm in 1916.



"OLD MAN" PEDRICKS, A prosperous supplier of wood to Colorado River steamboats.



CAPT. THOMAS POLHAMUS,   (b. April 7, 1828; d. January 16, 1922). Colorado River steamboat captain, freight forwarder and warehouseman.



CHARI.ES DEBRILLE POSTON, (b. Kentucky, April 20, 1825; d. Arizona, June 24, 1902). Indian Superintendent of Arizona. Established second Indian Reservation in Arizona on Colorado River on March 3, 1865, to serve Hualapais and Yavapais. Planned first irrigation of Colorado River waters and assisted in digging nine mile canal, 1867-1874, near Yuma (by Indians). Project unsuccessful. Sometimes called "Father of Arizona."



GRACE SALOME PRATT,   A husband and wife team who attempted to start an



H. B. PRATT, agricultural colony in the Grace Valley. The town of Salome was named after Mrs. Pratt. Charles H. Pratt founded townsite, 1904.



EPES RANDOLPH,   Vice-president of the Southern Pacific Railroad.



JOSE MARIA REDONDO, Born around the year 1830, in Mexico, Jose came to what is now the southwest part of the U. S. in 1849, at the age of nineteen. The first Redondo home was established in Laguna, Arizona, a mining town, about fifteen miles north of Yuma. The first Redondo enterprise was a bakery and a store. He eventually established the famous Hacienda San Ysidro, a multi-thousand acre site in Yuma County. This was one of the biggest farming haciendas in the West. There were vineyards of grapes, orchards of apricots, pears, peaches, and pomegranates, vast fields of wheat, barley, beans and corn, and pasture lands with cattle, sheep, goats, and fine horses. Steamboats plied up and down the Colorado River a few miles to the west of the Hacienda, carrying goods to and fro. He was responsible for developing the mining boom in the area of La Paz, Arizona. Following his I-a Paz success Redondo engaged in the working of the Pichacho gravels, on the California side of the river, 25 miles north of Yuma, which were rich and profitable. He was chosen to represent Yuma County in the House of Representatives in the Seventh Territorial Legislature, which met in Tucson, Arizona, in 1875 and 1877. Because of his Roman Catholic beliefs, he opposed many times, bills which supported divorce in sundry ways. At the session of 1873, he was active in having the name of Arizona City changed to Yuma. He died on June 18, 1878, at the young age of forty-eight.



PETER REED, (possibly "Charles" Reed) who was murdered along with James Lytle, a stage driver, Thomas Oliver, a cook, and possibly Mrs. Reed, on December 24, 1870, when three "renegade Mexicans" attacked the stage station.



WILLIAM RHODES, RODES, or ROODS, A Kentuckian, he came to Santa Cruz, Arizona Territory, in 1855 and established a cattle ranch. After Indian trouble, he re-established the ranch just above the Barriers, a rapid on the Colorado River. During the flooding of the river on April 29,1870, he and a man by the name of Poindexter, drowned when their boat hit a snag and capsized while they were attempting to cross the river.



JOHN H. ROLL,   A homesteader of repute in the Yuma area.



RICHARD RYLAND,   Discovered the Planet Mine in April, 1864.



E. F. SANGUINETTI, Was born in Coulterville, California, on May 16, 1867. He came to Yuma at the age of sixteen and remained until his death. Very few men accomplish in a lifetime what he did. For a half century he spent his energies and talents as a super merchant and developer of agriculrure, mortuary science, mining, public utilities, and every phase of business that there was at that time. He was a dedicated man to his community which he loved. He had a host of friends and was so well known in the State of Arizona, that a letter simply postmarked Sanguinetti, Arizona, would reach him. He traded with trappers, grubstaked prospectors, bought gold, mined on a big scale, operated a dozen stores in many towns and organized ventures which would take a hundred men to mastermind. He was Mr. Yuma, and one of his most famous quotes lives with us today: "One thing I have learned in life. Of all the evils on this earth, hard work is the least of all them." History appraises him for what he was ... a courageous, self-reliant, imaginative, constructive pioneer, a notable example of the breed of statebuilders upon whose successes and failures, achievements and sacrifices, Arizona's greatness is founded.



JACOBO SEDELMAYR, Explored the Yuma area during the year 1750. He is known to have stopped at Tinajas Altas on November 23, 1750.



CHARLES SILENT,   Associate Justice of the Territorial Supreme Court in 1880.



GEORGE SILLS, Organized the Silver Mining District in partnership with George W. Norton. (1880-1884).



CONNOR and JACOB SNIVELY, These two brothers organized the Castle Dome Mining District in 1863.



VICTOR E. STATTERDAHL,   Storekeeper and postmaster (and probably founder) at VlCKSBURG.



LT. THOMAS W. SWEENEY, U. S. Army officer who established Camp Independence near mouth of Gila River on June 6, 1851. In December of 1851, the camp was replaced and Fort Yuma was established on the west bank of the Colorado River.



CHARLES TYSON, Constructed a privately owned fort for protection against Indian depradations in 1856, on the present site of Quartzsite.



CHARLES UTTING,   A Rough Rider in the Spanish American War.



LT. AMIEL W. WHIPPLE, While heading a boundary survey in 1849, Whipple made camp on the site of what was later to become Fort Yuma (on the California side).



WESLEY WHITE, A rancher who attempted to dig a water well only to strike sale water at 110 feet. White Well is named after him.



JOSIAH WINCHESTER,   Owner-operator of the Desert Mine, circa 1910.



CAPT. A. D. YOCUM, A steamboat captain associated in the settlement of the community of Somerton, on the Algodones Land Grant, south of Yuma.



OTIS E. YOUNG, A Pennsylvanian, he established Wenden, naming it after a farm he had owned in Pennsylvania, named Wendendale.



SYLVESTER VILLA
Many a law enforcement officer has immortalized his name in the history of southwest criminology. But it is doubtful if there was any more cunning, more colorful character than Yuma County's legendary tracker—Sylvester Villa.
Out of the wilds of the old West sprang this strapping, wire lad of Spanish and Indian ancestry. Young Sylvester, born in Yuma, December 28, 1885, had no book learning but it made little difference to him. He preferred to be alone. He never had much to say.
The only schooling he ever had was under his father's guidance, in the field of cow-punching. In spite of the lack of formal education however, he had one out-standing ability — an exceptional power of observation.
One night when he was about six years old, a thief broke into one of the neighboring adobe dwellings and took several pairs of men's trousers and shirts and a rifle. As he darted out the door, the residents surprised him. Some one shot at him three times but he was soon lost in the darkness.
About noon the following day, one of the burglary victims recognized as his own, a blue shin that a prospector was wearing. In spite of his protest that he had found the shirt on a nearby trail, the desert rat was led to his horse and rushed to the village where ordinarily justice was dispensed, without a waste of time. The man was tried and sentenced to the gallows within five rninutes.
As one of the "authorities" placed a lasso around the prospector's neck, Sylvester shrieked, "No, no, that is not the man." Then Sylvester told his elders that the man they wanted was wounded in the right leg. He had followed his tracks for a short distance and had found on the sand, drops of blood and light right footprints as compared with those of the left foot. The prospector was not wounded. The men were stunned by the boy's keen observation.
A bit reluctant at first, they nevertheless admitted their mistake and let the old  prospector go on his way. Later another suspect was brought in. Wounded in the right leg and wearing stolen clothes did not permit him to lie his way out of it. "Justice" took its normal course.
After his father's death, Sylvester Villa hired out to cattlemen. He was still quite young when he applied for a job replacing a drunken and careless cowboy. The ranch foreman laid the law down to him in no uncertain terms. He was to get his board and room plus $25 per month. But for each steer that was to get away he would lose ten dollars out of his pay check. "Take it or leave it."
This was taking quite a chance but Sylvester needed the job and took it. Before they completed the deal, however, the boy had the foreman count the cattle and made sure they were all branded properly.
"How many steers stray away?" asker Sylvester. "Fifteen," the foreman boomed.
"If I lose a steer I pay you ten dollars. If I find a steer you pay me ten dollars."
Wrinkling his bushy eyebrows, the old foreman considered momentarily the boy's rough proposition. It wasn't likely that the cattle might be found — not after three weeks.
"Yes, of course! I'll pay you ten dollars for each steer you return." The cowpoke nodded his approval as the foreman turned to mount his horse. Day after day, while the cattle rested under the vigilant eye of his dog, Sylvester penetrated deep into the semi-wasteland looking for fresh cow tracks.
The first of the following month, when the foreman came with new supplies, he was completely confounded when Sylvester presented him with the fifteen strays. The half-starved stragglers weren't worth ten dollars all put together, but in those days a man kept his word if he did anything at all. And Sylvester Villa had earned an extra $150.00.
As time went on, the West slowly but steadily changed from cattle-raising to agriculture. Finally the day came when Sylvester Villa was no longer needed as a cowhand. After working at odd jobs throughout the Yuma area, Sylvester went into business for himself on the Colorado River. Villa's Ferry Boat was well known to western travelers. Here he made a fair living for some time; the ferry, too, was outmoded.
Every now and then the Sheriff's office would hire him to track down Yuma's outlaws, but it wasn't until Sheriff T. H. "Pete" Newman's administration, that Villa was made a full-fledged deputy.
At last Sylvester Villa was in a position where he could exercise almost daily his now famous ability as a tracker.
On the night of January 24, 1948, Bill Bailey who was farming river-bottom land on the Arizona side of the Colorado River near Yuma, reported to Undersheriff Lloyd Mabcry that a house on his property had been burglarized. The loot had been clothing and other possessions of two Mexican farm hands.
Mabery, accompanied by Deputies Jim Cawley and Sylvester Villa hurried to the scene of the burglary. By flashlight Villa was able to discern footprints which led across the river bottom sands to the underpass on Highway 95. (This underpass no longer is used). Here he lost the trail. He directed Mabery and Cawley to return to the car and wait for him on a dirt road while he backtracked the trail. This was shortly after 10 pjn.
Within five minutes after Cawley had parked the car, they heard five shots in rapid succession. Mabcry raced for help while Cawley drove the car to the top of a sand dune. Switching on the spotlight they were able to distinguish a barefoot man running toward the highway.
Cawley immediately turned back toward the spot where the fleeing man had crossed the highway, and again they were able to catch a glimpse of him as he disappeared into the darkness. They pursued on foot for a distance, but all in vain.
The two officers hurried back to the scene of the shooting. There they found Sylvester with bullet wounds in the groin and abdomen, lying face down in the sand. By this time reinforcements had arrived. James N. Braley, Customs Inspector, and L. C Dingcss, rushed Villa to the hospital where he died at 2:45 the following morning.
It was later learned that Villa had come upon the man, apparently asleep in a blanket where he had "jungled up" for the night. Villa approached him with a flashlight and nudged him with his foot. The thief fired instantly.
Ray Marvin Graves, 27, was caught the following day after fleeing 24 miles across burning sands and malpais rock. His bare feet were now bleeding shreds of raw flesh. He was sentenced to 50 to 75 years in the state prison.
The loot and old blanket and a few work clothes, valued not more than $4.75 was returned to the farm hands — all at the expense of the life of one of the South-west's most colorful tracker—Sylvester Villa.



HAROLD C. GISS
Extravagant claims are made often in the world of politics but no one will deny that the number one man in the history of modern Yuma, is Harold C. Giss. This elder statesman and civic leader supreme, has dominated the political and civic life of Yuma and Arizona for the past thirty years. He is Mr. Yuma today. But he is even more than that. Few persons familiar with the legislative scene in Arizona will deny that Senator Harold C. Giss is one of the most influential men in legislative circles. For the past twenty years, Senator Giss has represented Yuma County in the State Legislature. Probably very few cities in the United States can boast of such wonderful and meaningful representation.
He was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on February 5, 1906. There were three sons in the family . . . Harold, Monroe, and Jerome. Harold was the oldest. His mother was Katherine Edna (Glazer) Giss and his father was David Giss. When Harold was ten years old, the family left for Los Angeles primarily to seek relief for David Giss, who suffered horribly from arthritis. He was a man who struggled to make a living in a small St. Paul grocery store.
Katherine Giss, an expert at hemstitching, opened a little shop, and this was to be the major source of income for the family in its first years in California. At the age of fourteen Harold was already employed full time in helping the family keep body and soul together.
Muscular and healthy, he worked at an ice route, and later in a used car lot. Eventually he became a process server and at this time in his life, he was smitten by the law bug. He read writs and took vicarious pleasure in his associations with men of law. He went to Southwestern University of Law in Los Angeles, working before and after classes; but after a year and a half of part time study, he had to give it up.
Following his marriage to Goldie Stool of Del Rio, Texas, the future Senator first arrived in Yuma on January 12, 1938, and has made his home in this city ever since. He purchased a department store, the Emporium, and was its guiding light for many years.
Senator and Mrs. Giss have three fine sons . . . Maurice, Kenneth and Gerald. He entered politics in 1948, when he was first elected to the House of Representatives. He served in this capacity for two years, and then ran for the Senate and has been in that office for eighteen years.
While a member of the House, he served on the following committees: Agriculture and Irrigation, Aeronautics, Livestock and Public Lands, and Ways and Means.
As Senator he has been a member of just about every committee during his long tenure.



A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.

CHARLES T. AND LENA ADAMS
Charles Timothy was born in 1881 on a farm near McCook, Nebraska, to Ella and William Adams. He had three sisters and two brothers. He married Lena Katherine Uhren on May 17, 1905. Lena, one of a family of seven, was born and reared on a homestead south ol Indianola, Nebraska.
Charles's greatest ambition was to keep moving westward. Later he moved to Benkelman, Nebraska, where he operated a shoe shop, also fixing all kinds of har- ness. There were more horses and buggies in those days than automobiles. During this period Gladys, Gertrude. Clifford, and Beatrice were born.
Several years later the Adams family moved to Haigler. then to a small acreage five miles west of Haigler. There they had two girls. Wauneta and Crystal The oldest children walked 1 1/2  miles to a one-room school where only ten or twelve attended.
While the family lived here, Charles was also the "ditch rider." The irrigation ditch started about tour miles east of Wray, going south of Laird and on into Nebraska south and east of Sanborn. Charles's job was to oversee the cleaning of the ditch each spring, and see that each farmer received his share of water to irrigate his crops. He rode the ditch in a two-wheel cart.
The family's next move westward was to a rented farm one mile east of Laird. While living here, Charles's health failed and he died in 1922, leaving Lena with five children to raise. The eldest daughter, Gladys, married that same summer.
Lena Adams and the five children moved to Laird where all attended school. In 1925 another story was added to the grade school, and Laird had a modern high school with typing room, science laboratory, and class rooms, they also had both girls and boys basketball teams.
Then the children began to marry: Gladys married Evan Derowitsch and had three sons: Kenneth, Evan Jr., and Gene. Evan died in 1952. Later Gladys married Gail Carson. Gertrude married William Haun; later Dr. William P. Hisington. She taught in Yuma County for twenty-seven years in different one-room schools. Her last nine years of teaching were five in Vernon and four Idalia, then retirement. Clifford married Twila Kearns and had one son, Waldo. Later he worked around Redmond, Oregon, and married Adeline Mustard and had a son, Michael. Beatrice married Charles Pickett, having two daughters, Patsy and Norma. She died in 1935 at age twenty-two.
Wauneta married Hans Thompson, and moved to Lamar. They had Jeanette, JoAnna, Timmy, Karen, and Sandra. Later she married George Osborn and had a son, Gary. Even later she moved back to Wray.
Crystal married Harold Bowman and had a son, Barry, and adopted a daughter, Susan. They live eight miles southeast of Wray.
Lena Adams, after all the children were married, moved to Wray where she lived until her death in 1973.
We probably would have moved farther west if Charles had lived longer.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.
Contributed by Friends for Free Genealogy

GLENN AND PHYLLIS KEELER ADAMSON
Glenn was born November 14, 1932, nine miles northeast of Wray. He and his twin brother Lynn were the third and fourth children born to Issac Lathatr and Bertha Adams Adamson. His father moved from Missouri to Nebraska. His mother was born in Arkansas. She moved to Nebraska to live with her grandmother, where she met and married Mr. Adamson. They moved north of Wray in the spring of 1924 to farm. Glenn attended the North Laird school and later attended schools in the Kirk area. Mr. Adamson passed away when Glenn was twelve. Four years later the family purchased a farm north of Wray. For many years Glenn was in the employ of Henry Bledsoe.
Phyllis Keeler Adamson was born November 29, 1939, at Hale, Colorado. Her parents were Harry and Nellie Browning Keeler. Phyllis was the youngest in a family of eleven children. Family ties still remain close as the older children were responsible many times for the younger ones. The family moved to the Wray area in 1944 where she attended the Wray Schools.
Phyllis and Glenn were married October 19, 1958, at the Wray Methodist Church. While living at the Bledsoe Ranch north of Wray, Michael Ray and Peri Kay were born. As the children grew up on the ranch many of their activities involved every aspect of 4-H and related projects. The whole family participated, with the parents serving as leaders. Together the family enjoys music as well as golfing and boating. Life on the ranch was most rewarding except for the memory of several frightening grass fires.
In the spring of 1973 they made their home on Sunset Lane in Wray. The Adamson Brothers Feedlot was purchased this same year and operated by the twins. Many amusing experiences could be told as members ofa family of fraternal twins.
Phyllis has been a teacher in the United Methodist Church for 10 years and Glenn has served as Lay Leader. As a member of Chez Moi, Phyllis has been Chairman of the Heart Memorial Fund for several years and is interested in art and needlework.
Their parents Bertha Adamson and Harry Keeler still reside in Wray.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.
Contributed by Friends for Free Genealogy

ISAAC LATHAIR AND BERTHA ADAMS ADAMSON
Isaac Lathair was born in 1891 at Brookfield, Missouri, to Ponsonby and Sarah Adamson. He had five brothers and three sisters. One of the stories of his boyhood that he liked to relate was going to the river and spearing fish with a pitchfork. His family came to Nebraska in 1911 to farm. Bertha Adams Adamson was born in Catalpa, Arkansas, in 1902 to Henry Thomas and Mary Elvira. She had two brothers and five sisters which included a set of twins. She moved to Nebraska in 1920 to live with her grandmother.
Bertha and Isaac met at a barn dance. They were married in McCook, Nebraska in September of 1920. Isaac was a wheat farmer. Their daughter Verleen was born while living south of Trenton.
In the spring of 1924 they moved northeast of Wray, Colorado. Isaac's father, Pon, lived with them for seven years. Their son Charles was born in 1926 and Glenn and Lynn, a set of fraternal twins were born in 1932. The family have vivid memories of the terrible dust storms in the 1930's. It was so dry that there was no grass or feed for the cattle. The Government bought good cattle for $12.00 a head. These same cattle had been purchased for $50.00 a head.
The family moved to Kirk in the fall of 1942. Isaac died in 1945. Four years later Bertha, Glenn and Lynn moved back north of Wray where they purchased a farm.
Bertha moved to Wray in 1958 and started working at the hospital. She worked there for seventeen years and has enjoyed seeing the babies born at the hospital grow into young adults. Her hobbies are needle-work and gardening. The family has enjoyed the many quilts she has made for them.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.
Contributed by Friends for Free Genealogy

CHARLES AND DORA MILLER
Charles E. and Dora E. Miller had been married seven years when they and three children came from Union County, Iowa, to Yuma County in 1904.
Their livestock and household goods were shipped by box car on the railroad from Creston, Iowa, to Laird.
They farmed south of Laird for two years before moving to a homestead north of Laird where they lived for 3 years. In 1908, the family moved to Laird where they oper-ated the Miller Hotel and a meat market for the next 5 years.
They are best known for the popular hotel and restaurant which they owned and operated in St. Francis, Kansas, for the next 30 years.
Mr. and Mrs. Miller retired in 1944 and three years later celebrated their golden wedding with an open house for friends and family.
In 1912, a son Eldon was born, who lost his life in an automobile accident in 1944. Mr. Miller died in 1953 and Mrs. Miller in 1963. Both were members of the First Christian Church of St. Francis.
A son, Herman Miller, and wife Garnet live in St. Francis. He served as book-keeper, assistant cashier, cashier and president of the Cheyenne County State Bank during the 52Vi years before his retirement in 1971
A daughter, Grace, and husband, Charles Eaton, reside in Medford, Oregon Their second daughter, Beatrice, and her husband, C. L. Baxter, live in Benkelman, Nebraska.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.

C.E. AND GRACE MILLER
Charles Elvert Miller, the oldest son of Pierce and Laura Miller, was born January 15,1899, at Laird and grew to manhood in the Laird and Wray communities. He was a veteran of World War I.
On June 24, 1924, he and Grace Whis-sen, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Whis-sen, were married by Reverend Tyner in a ceremony at the Christian Church parso-nage in Wray.
They were the parents of two sons, Neil Eugene and Delane Norris. The family lived m the area at Wray and Laird until 1942 when they moved to Ft. Morgan.
He was engaged in farming until he retired because of ill health. His death came March 15, 1972, following a heart attack.
His many friends knew him as "Court" throughout his lifetime and enjoyed his interest in flowers and antiques.
Neil Miller is with the State Highway Department and lives in Greeley. He and his wife, the former Dorothy Roberts, have four children, Robert, Virgil, and Charles, all married, and Janet.
Delane Miller married Ethel Delane Edson and moved to Wyoming where he was shift boss for the Golden Goose Mine until his death on March 1, 1969 Their children were Lonnie, Patty, and David.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.

CHARLES AND JULIA MILLER
From 1920-1923 our family lived on the Milt Morris farm in Yuma County. My mother, Julia Alice Morris, went to Colorado about 1906 with her brother Free-man. They spent the year with their Uncle Wilse Giles. In 1907 their parents, Charles William and Lillian Chase Morris, and the rest of the family went, too.
Mother started to homestead and taught school at Bunker Hill in Yuma County and also over in Kansas. In 1909, my father, Charles Miller, whom she had known near Tornado, West Virginia, went to Colorado and on September 22, 1909, they were married at Armel. They returned to St. Albans, West Virginia, where he had a meat market.
Three children were born — Lillian, Charles, and George. At the age of 7, Charles died; and so when I (Lillian) was 9 and George was 6, they moved to be closer to her people and so that Dad could farm.
In 1922 a brother, Bob, was born and by 1923 Dad had decided that he was not a farmer and moved back to St. Albans and opened a store.
Another brother, Raymond, was born in 1924 and the years flew by.
We loved to reminisce about our days "out West" — a one room school (Bunker Hill), riding horseback to school, being snowed in, seeing prairie dogs, rattles-nakes, and blizzards. And, oh, the fun of the big get-togethers at homes, churches, and at school.
Dad died in 1969, a few weeks short of his eighty-eighth birthday. He worked in his store eleven hours the day before he died. He and Mother had celebrated their fifty-ninth wedding anniversary.
Mother was less lucky health wise and was a semi-invalid her last few years. She died in 1971 at eighty-four.
George was their mainstay, staying at home, running the store, and making their lives much more pleasant. He lives in St. Albans and is retired.
Robert is a realtor in Galesburg, Illinois, has four children and retired after thirty years in the Army as a Lieutenant-Colonel.
Raymond is an electronic engineer in Falmouth, Virginia. He spent twenty years in the Army and retired as a Chief Warrant Officer.
I married Marshall Cunningham and we had three children, one of whom survives. I retired as an elementary teacher two years ago.
People like my grandparents and their children really made Yuma County history, and I am proud to have been a little part of it.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.

PIERCE AND LAURA MILLER
Pierce (Robert Pierce) Miller was a young man in his 20's when he accompanied his uncle, Daniel B. McGinnis, to Colorado from Creston, Iowa, in 1892. Mr, McGinnis was a horse trader which, for those times, was comparable to a car dealer because of the mode of transportation.
Pierce made his home with another uncle, W. E. McGinnis, at Laird until his marriage to Laura Jane Rife. Their wedding occurred 20 April, 1897, at the home of her parents, the Simon Rites, who lived northwest of Laird (known in 1978 as the Bradshaw Ranch).
The Laird community was home for 20 years before the family moved to the Miller Ranch, two miles east of Wray in 1917 for another 20 years.
One early home was the homestead site 4/2 miles north of Laird where the tree lane entrance still stands. This land adjoined that of his mother, Susan McGinnis Miller, and of his sister and her family, the Charles Millers, who later moved to St. Francis, Kansas.
Mr. Miller was among the first of the early settlers to build a dam for irrigation — on an acreage east of Laird. Part of this land was later sold to the Laird school district for the location of a new school. The building is now used as a community center. The couple participated in community activities and news accounts of the day list them as fair winners in grain, vegetables, poultry and handwork.
Children born to them, included Charles Elvert, who married Grace Whissen and later moved to Ft. Morgan where he died in 1972, and Frank G. who married Eula Patchen and lives in Wray. Nellie is the widow of Roscoe Bullard and Archie lives with his wife, Alta McCoy, on the Johnson place adjoining Wray. Each had two children.
Mr. Miller was a race-horse fan and many summers found him on the race cir-cuit with a winning horse. A race track was always a part of every Miller farm and was enjoyed, too, by the four children and their saddle horses.
Mrs. Miller was a kind neighbor and befriended many in need of help. She was often called upon to care for a new babe, born at home during the night. She was a good cook and hospitality was extended generously to those who came to "their house by the side of the road".
She died in December, 1936, at the age of 60 years. Her husband later moved to Ft. Morgan where he died in November, 1946, at the age of 80 years. Both are buried in Grandview Cemetery at Wray.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.

COSIE AND MYRTLE BLANCHARD
When Cosie and Myrtle Blanchard. citizens of Eagle. Cass County. Nebraska, were married in 1902. land in that part ot the country was becoming hard to obtain. They therefore decided to follow the time-honored practice and go west.
They arrived in Wray. Colorado, on the seventh day of November, 1904, and moved to a homestead, eleven miles southwest of Vernon. Cosie had previously bought the preemption rights of Fritz Schlodrick. Their home was a one-room rock house that had been built by Mr. Schlodrick.
One quarter of land and a few cattle that were pastured on free range did not furnish the best of living; so they sold out and moved to Wray in 1908.
Cosie bought a livery barn on the north-east corner of Second and Main Streets and a house across the alley on Second Street. It was in this house that their two daughters, Geneva Jo and Juanita L. were born.
Being in the livery business, Cosie was often called on to take newcomers to look at land that was for sale; thus he became interested in the real-estate business.
In 1910 he entered into partnership with W. C. Proctor and devoted most of his time to the real-estate business. He owned various other businesses, including a confec- tionery in Wray and a drug store in Vernon. He devoted the rest of his life to selling and developing real-estate.
In 1920 he built the theatre and hotel building on Third Street, first known as the Tyo Theatre and Hotel, but later as the Wray Theatre and the Blanchard Hotel.
Through the years Cosie Blanchard became a highly-respected citizen of the area. He was a friend to all who knew him and a man, generous with both his time and money. Many a person in need when attending a farm sale found himself taking home a horse or a cow paid for by Cosie Blanchard. Some paid him back, many did not.
Cosie Blanchard passed away on April 16, 1927 at the early age of forty-eight years.
Myrtle Anna Blanchard, Cosie's partner in all enterprises, was a very industrious and strong-willed person. She was an expert seamstress, having been taught by her father, a tailor from Berlin, Germany, area. She was a dressmaker for many years for a large number of the female population of the Wray Community.
In 1932, during the depression, when many businesses were failing, she took over the management of the Blanchard Hotel and by determination and hard work soon had it on a paying basis.
On April 21, 1943, she was married to Ivan Ashlock. She operated the hotel until 1945 when she retired. Mr. Ashlock died in June, 1966; and Myrtle, on August 2, 1974, at the age of 84.
We of the family feel a great debt of gratitude not only to Cosie and Myrtle Blanchard but to all those whose courage, sacrifices, and toil made this section of the High Plains the best place on earth to live.
By Ward A. Tomlinson.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.

HOWARD AND ADA BLAZER
Howard O. Blazer was born to Benjamin and Emma (Yarger) Blazer in 1905 at Athol, Kansas. He spent his childhood years in Smith County, Kansas, except for the years, 1916-1918, when he lived north of Eckley with his parents where they farmed. As a young man, he worked as a harvest-hand in the surrounding states, and for a short time on the railroad in Denver. He often visited his Uncle Henry Thompson, who lived north of Eckley. In 1928, he came to the Vernon community helping different farmers pick corn. He picked corn for Meindert Poppen where he met Ada Poppen, youngest daughter of Meindert. Howard and Ada were married on July 3,1929.
Ada F. Poppen was born to Meindert and Theda (Karsjin) Poppen in 1908, at Groothusen, Germany. Ada came with her parents from Germany in 1914, to settle on a farm near Vernon. Her mother died in 1914, leaving three daughters: Frances Poppen (Bucholz), Rena Poppen (Stults), and Ada Poppen (Blazer). She attended the Riverside school, and was an active member of the St. John's Lutheran Church.
Howard (Slim) and Ada lived in northeastern Colorado until 1934, when they moved to Lebanon, Oregon. In September 1941, they moved back to Yuma County, Colorado, where they have lived since. To this union five children were born (the three oldest were born near Vernon and the two youngest were born in Oregon). Viola married Edward Wall from Cheyenne County, Kansas. They live on a farm near Kirk. They have two daughters and one
granddaughter. Dewayne married a California girl and lives in Long Beach, California. They have two children. He is an electrician. Harold married a local girl, Bonnie Whomble. They have two children. He is Yuma County Road Department Supervisor. Arlene married a Pennsylvania boy.
They live near Hudson, Colorado, and have two children and one granddaughter. He works for Petco Oil Company. Robed lives in Denver and is a carpenter. He has one daughter.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.


BLAINE C. AND MARGARET BLACKER
Blame C and Margaret Colson Blacker came to Yuma County from Jewell County. Kansas to their farm, northwest of Vernon, Colorado in 1914. There was a one-room frame house there which Blaine (better known as Pete) made liveable as he was very handy at carpenter work In later years he made a very comfortable six-room house, using the small house. The place was half broken out and half range land which made a hardship on the neighbors when he fenced in the pasture and they lost the use of it. A well was drilled with just a pump head, a wash tub was used for a tank which was filled by pumping by hand for the livestock to drink. Lacking a scoop shovel many loads of corn were loaded into a wagon with a bucket and hauled into Eckley, Colorado with a team, leaving before daylight and getting back after dark There were no graded roads and the ruts were very deep and sandy and it was hard to get through.
There was a restaurant in Eckley that served meals family style for twenty-five cents. It was a popular place for the men hauling corn. Other crops they raised were potatoes, watermelons, and also pigs, chickens, and milk cows,
Blame built all the improvements on this farm himself with the help of his father, G. W. Blacker, and his brothers who had settled on the north half of the same section.
Three children were born to this family, Geneva H. Wakefield, Vera F. Rockwell. and Ross L Blacker. The Blackers were members of The Eckley First United Pres- byterian Church and the Eckley Grange
Mr. and Mrs. Blacker lived here until they  retired and moved into Yuma. Colorado in 1947.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.


GEORGE W. AND IDA BLACKER
George W. Blacker, born in 1867. at Waukon. Iowa, moved at an early age to Hardy, Nebraska, where he met Ida Justice, daughter ot the Justice family who were more Indian than any other blood and had been born in Mitchell, South Dakota, in 1868. She had moved several times before she met George W. Blacker They were married in Hardy and were still living there when their oldest daughter Elsie was born.
There were eight children in the family: Elsie, Rena, Mable, Guy, Blaine, Ernest. Fred, and Roy. They moved many times, landing in Jewell County. Kansas, in the
early 1900's. In 1913 or 1914 they moved their family to Yuma County, first living on the Christy place but soon moving to a place they bought five miles west and one and one-half miles north of Vernon. They lived there with all but their three oldest children who were already married, until their retirement.
George and Ida were real pioneers and worked hard to establish their home and raise their large family. George farmed and enjoyed life and friends. Ida did beautiful handwork of crocheting and sewing and enjoyed helping others, keeping house and cooking good food. Ida's health failed after they retired and moved to Wray. She died in 1944. George was unable to care for himself after his wife's death; so he moved back to the farm to live with his son Fred's family. He died in 1945.
Elsie married August Peterson and moved to Yuma County. Her story is in this book. The son Guy stayed in Jewell County. Kansas, all his life. They had two sons. Blaine and wife Margaret moved to Yuma County. They had two daughters, Geneva (Wakefield) and Vera (Rockwell), and a son Ross. Ernest and wife Cecil lived in Yuma County many years but moved to Tacoma, Washington where both died
Fred and Fern moved to Fort Morgan, where Fred did construction work. Rena (Foster) Harrison lives in Scottsbluff. Roy and wife Edith are now retired and live on Clay Street in Wray. Mable Rice the youngest and husband Gene are retired from farming and live in Yuma By Evelyn Peterson.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.

F. A. BENEDETTI
Francis Anthony Benedetti. affectionately known to his friends as Bennie. He is a Virginian, having been born in Richmond, Virginia, April 8. 1925, the fiflh of six children of Vincent and Willie Mae Benedetti
He attended the public schools in Richmond, graduated from Duke University in 1946, and from Duke Law School at Durham, North Carolina in 1949 He served two years in the US Navy on the U S S Merntt (AKA 97) Cargo Attack ship in the Pacific theatre during World War II. He married Martea Balliet. September 8. 1947 at Oxford. Nebraska Marlea was an only child of Atlee and Bonnie Balliet She graduated trom Oxford High School, and Cottey College at Nevada, Missouri, in 1944
Bennie, having passed the Colorado Bar examination in 1949, began the practice ot law at Fort Morgan, Colorado with the law firm of Doll and Haffke In 1950 he opened his own law office in Yuma. Colorado In May. 1955 he bought out Max Snydal and moved to Wray. where he has been since. In 1964 he bought a land-mark building on the corner of Fourth and Main Street in Wray from Don and Wyeth Houtz. He remodeled the building, providing space for the Amos Jewelry and the Majestic Savings, also a new office for himself.
The Benedetties have four children. Lee Alan, the oldest, was born at Fort Morgan, November 23, 1949. graduated from Wray High in 1967, University of Miami in June. 1971 He is now engaged in television as an executive salesman for station KBIR-TV in Knoxville, Tennessee Bonnie Mae. was born m Yuma, Colorado, December 29. 1952. graduated from Wray High in 1971, University of Oregon. 1974, majoring in Recreation Therapy She is presently employed by the State of Colorado and attending the University of Colorado working on her master's degree. Phyllis Ann, was born in Wray, Colorado, August 9, 1960 She is now a senior at Wray High, very active in school atlairs. Editor of Wray-O-Lite, the high school paper. Marsha Kay was born in Wray. Colorado. October 19. 1962 She is the athletic type, taking part in basketball and olher sports She is a freshman at Wray High.
Bennie is a busy man He flies his own Bonanza plane and does most of his traveling by air. He is a member of the board of directors of the First S and L. Shares, the company which owns the Majestic Savings He is also on that board. He is a charter member of the Wray Elks, member ol the Wray Chamber of Commerce, the Colorado and American Bar Association He keeps fit by playing tennis, softball. volley-ball, and other sports Fishing is one ot his favorite hobbies By Martea Benedetti and N. Dean Henry.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.

JAMES AND MARY BENSON
The Benson clan first left the British Isles. England. Wales and Ireland, when the English put a German king on the throne The first group of Bensons migrated to Holland. The language barrier they encountered in this new country left them determined to purchase a ship and sail to the new world. They worked and toiled and finally realized their dream, set sail for America and landed in the town of New Amsterdam, now known as New York Most of the Bensons were sturdy farming people who prospered in their newland The area known as Harlem in New York was at one time known as "The Benson Farm". As the area around New Amsterdam became over-crowded, the Bensons elected to move West in search of a more rural family life. They migrated first to New Jersey, then to Pennsylvania, and finally to Lincoln Country, near Springfield. Illinois There James Holly Benson was born on July 7. 1870.
In 1873. when Nebraska opened up for homesteading. James's father. Elija M Benson, obtained large grants of farming land from the government and moved his family to Franklin County, near Riverton. Nebraska
James's mother died in Riverton, Nebraska, and James's father remarried James and his step-mother did not get along so, one day, James saddled his horse and rode West. He stopped at the famous Rosenkrans Ranch where Irving Barker was foreman Barker was tor many years a judge in Wray. Colorado. James was hired as a cowhand to break horses at the ranch, There he also met J. Q Conrad, and many other people who would change his lite Most important of all the people he met was Mary Ellen Aid, who was employed as a chuck wagon cook at the ranch. James wooed, won, and married Mary on January 14,1895.
Being independent in nature, James and Mary pooled their resources, bought a wagon, plow, team of horses, and cow and headed west into Colorado. They homesteaded land in an area known as "the South Divide". There they broke virgin soil and built a "soddy" home from the ground they had tilled
From the union of James and Mary were first born Grace May in 1896. James Calvin in 1898. and Anna Bell in 1900. Due to the subsequent failing health of Elija Benson. James and Mary were forced to leave their home in Colorado and return to Nebraska to assist the senior Benson in running his farm There they remained for the next thirteen years. During this period Nellie Faye was born in 1902. Dolly Viola in 1904. Elmer Thomas (Jack) in 1906. and Velda Mane in 1911.
After Eh(a's death in 1910, James and Mary returned to Wray. Colorado, where James renewed his friendship with J. O Conrad. Later, James went to work tor the expanding railroad. He was probably best known from when he worked for the town, driving a horse-drawn wagon to sprinkle the dusty streets of Wray The last two of James and Mary's children were born in Wray. Colorado, Floyd Ernest (Bus) In 1915, and Bernard Raymond (Bun) in 1917.
James Holly Benson died in Wray. Colorado, on March 3, 1936. and Mary Ellen Aid Benson died in Denver. Colorado, on August 3,1948,
The surviving children of Mary andJames Benson are as follows: Dolly Benson Topham. who lives with her husband Jim in Red Cloud. Nebraska; Elmer Thomas (Jack) Benson lives with his wife Martha in Antioch, California; Velda Mane Marcum lives in Los Gatos. California, with her husband Bob; and Floyd Ernest (Bus) Benson lives in Campbell. California, with his wife Ruby.
A HISTORY OF EAST YUMA COUNTY This is a collection of general history and family histories of East Yuma County from 1868 through 1978.



HON. OTIS R. HALE.

Born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in 1873, Mr. Hale is a son of Capt. Hiel Hale, a native of Columbiana county, Ohio. The family has long been represented in America, and the great-great-grandfather served his country with courage and distinction in the Revolutionary war. The grandfather, Nathan S., who subsequently died in Arizona, was a native of Columbiana county, Ohio, and was an industrious tiller of the soil during the greater part of his life. Captain Hale was a prominent man in whatever locality he chanced to live, and after removing to Arizona was a participator in the most substantial effort for the territory's growth. In Ohio he conducted large farming interests, but changed his residence to Iowa in 1850. During the first three months of the Civil war he served in the First Iowa Infantry, and was after that captain of Company D, Twelfth Iowa Infantry. Upon being captured at Pittsburg he suffered the confinement and horrors of Libby prison for eight months, and was paroled in 1864. The local political affairs of his locality in Iowa were materially advanced by his services in several important offices, among which was the position of sheriff of Linn county, which he held for two terms. For six years he was city marshal of Cedar Rapids, and for five years was the deputy warden of the Iowa state penitentiary at Fort Madison. From the latter position he was forced to resign because of ill health, and in search of a change of climate and occupation he came to Arizona in 1882. At the present time he is engaged in mining, and resides in the old and historically interesting town of Tucson. His ability was recognized by his fellow townsmen, who elected him to the nineteenth general assembly, during the sessions of which he served on several important committees, and ably represented the interests of Yuma county. He is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic.

The mother of O. R. Hale was formerly Sarah M. Dawley, who was born in Indiana, and subsequently removed with her parents to Iowa. She is the mother of two children, of whom O. R. is the younger. Albert Hale is a locomotive engineer with the Southern Pacific Railroad. The youth of O. R. Hale was an industrious one, and at a very early age he faced the problem of self-support. When but nine years of age he moved with his father to Tucson, and at the age of fourteen his education in the public schools was interrupted by his apprenticeship in the machine shops of the Southern Pacific Railroad. Following the four years spent in the shops, he worked as a machinist" in different eastern cities for a couple of years, and upon returning was with the same railroad company until his resignation in 1899. At this time he built a machine shop on Tenth street, Tucson, and, in partnership with Mr. Myrick, conducted a well-drilling and general machine plant under the firm name of Myrick & Hale. The firm are among the large business concerns in the city, and are experts in their particular line, and particularly "efficient deep well drillers. So large is the demand for their services that they keep two drills in operation the greater part of the time.

In 1898 Mr. Hale was nominated on the Republican ticket for the legislature, and elected by a good majority. He served on the judiciary committee and was chairman of the library committee, and of several others of equal importance. He was instrumental in securing the passage of the bill providing the appropriation for the University of Arizona, the money to be paid in regular yearly installments, and to be used in maintaining the highest possible management of the institution. He has served also as a member of the territorial central committee. Fraternally he is associated with the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks, and belongs to the club maintained by the order. He is a member of The International Association of Machinists.
Source: Portrait and Biographical Record of Arizona



FRANK. BAXTER, Superior Judge of Yuma County, even before coming to Yuma, was one of the best known and most popular attorneys in Arizona. Since his residence in Yuma county he has held nearly every position within the gift of the people of that county. He has been successively City Attorney, Assistant District Attorney, and at the last election was elected Superior Judge by one of the largest majorities ever given an elective officer in Yuma county.
Judge Baxter is a Virginian, having been born near Petersburg in 1853. His father was Thomas H. Baxter, who was in the United States customs service until the Civil War, holding an important position in Philadelphia. His mother, before her marriage, was Miss Anna E. Van Horn, of the Van Horns of North Carolina. So it will be easily seen that Judge Baxter came to Arizona an ardent Democrat, eminently qualified to become a party leader, an honorable attorney and a judge of ability and integrity, to whom the whole people could pin their faith as to his honesty, fairness, justice and ability; and such have the people of Yuma found him to be. As city recorder of Phoenix he made an excellent reputation and was elected to the position of probate judge, with the office of superintendent of schools ex-officio. His wide experience as a jurist and attorney made him the logical candidate for the speakership of the Seventeenth Territorial Assembly and he was elected practically without opposition. He later served as chief clerk of the Nineteenth legislative assembly. His record in official life was such that when he left Phoenix to go to Yuma, Frank Baxter left a large circle of friends behind.
He is a graduate of the Philadelphia public schools and later supplemented this with a course at the Chester Military Academy, Chester, Pa. He studied law in the offices of E. C. and V. S. Lovell of Elgin, Ill., the former a probate judge of that county.
As Superior Judge of Yuma county he has presided with dignity and fairness and no jurist in the state has a larger clientele of friends and admirers than he.
In 1914, no doubt, he will be re-elected by an even larger majority than that given him in 1911.
Who's Who In Arizona Volume 1 1913 Complied and Published by Jo Connors



FRED L. INGRAHAM, County Attorney of Yuma, has been identified with the political life of Arizona for a number of years, and is particularly well known for the part he took in the Constitutional Convention in 1910, having been a member of the committee which drafted the Corporation Commission provision, and also of the Style, Revision and Compilation Committee, and together with Mr. M. G. Cunniff, President of the First State Senate, and Lysander Cassidy, a well known citizen of Phoenix. Mr. Ingraham was born in 1868, in Ohio, where his father, Richard Ingraham, was a merchant and farmer. His mother, Lucy Lewis Ingraham, was a descendant of one of the well known pioneer families of that State. His forbears on both sides were among the pioneers of Ohio and Michigan. Mr. Ingraham attended public schools in Ohio and Michigan, and was afterwards graduated from the Law and Literary Departments of the University of Michigan, at Ann Arbor. After completing his course he was for some time instructor in English at Ypsilanti Normal College, Michigan, where he established an excellent reputation as an exponent and teacher of pure English. In 1907 he was united in marriage with Miss Inez Jacobs, a daughter of one of the pioneer families of Arizona, her family having been among the early settlers of Yuma. To this union has been born one daughter, Alice. Mr. Ingraham not only takes a prominent part in the political life of the State, but is also a substantial business man, a stockholder and director of the Yuma National Bank, and a large landholder. During his term of office he has given general satisfaction as a prosecutor and has conducted the affairs of the office in a manner thoroughly satisfactory to the voters of the county.
Who's Who In Arizona Volume 1 1913 Complied and Published by Jo Connors



P. J. MILLER, member Tax Commission During the hardships through which the country went during the great civil war, to be correct, on June 24, 1863, P. J. Miller, the third member of the Arizona State Tax Commission, was born on his father's farm near the little town of Durhamville, in Oneida County, in the Empire State of New York. Two years after his birth the father died, the farm was sold and the family moved to Buffalo, where he attended the grammar and high schools and laid the foundation for the vast amount of practicable information he now has at his command. Mr. Miller went to Chicago at the age of 17, but in less than two years thereafter, the call of the West being strong within him, he started for Prescott, Arizona, where he arrived in the fall of 1883. He has been a resident of Arizona practically ever since. His first employment was secured with Superintendent Craig of the Dosoris silver mine and his job was ore sorting. When the mine shut down the young man took a job as storekeeper at Fort Whipple, using there to good advantage his knowledge of the general merchandise business gained in Buffalo and Chicago after leaving school. In those stirring days at Fort Whipple promotion came to him early and he was successively forage master, corral master and finally acting superintendent of the depot, with thousands of dollars worth of stores in his charge. This was during the Crook and Miles campaigns against Chief Geronimo and his Apaches. After leaving the service of the quartermaster's department of the army he went to New York and was employed as a salesman for a short time. In 1896 he was happily married to Miss Alice M. Waldby, of Little Falls, N. Y., but the lure of the West was again upon him and in the fall of 1900 he settled on a homestead near the town of Yuma, in the fertile Yuma valley. In his agricultural activities he soon became a leading member of his community and assisted in building the farmers' canals in that valley and ran the first water there for the farmers. Shortly after this he assisted in the organization of the Yuma County Water Users' Association and became its secretary, and as such was an important factor in bringing the reclamation service to a thorough knowledge of the needs and great possibilities of the valley so that a government project was instituted there. He remained secretary of the Water Users' Association until 1909, but in the meantime he became interested in politics and was elected councilman of the town of Yuma in 1906, and helped pass the first ordinance compelling the laying of cement sidewalks, street improvements and sewers in the thriving southern city. Soon after this he was appointed clerk of the Board of Supervisors of Yuma County, in recognition of his services to the Democratic party in the election of 1908 and held that position until his appointment to the Tax Commission by Governor Hunt. All his life Mr. Miller has been consistently a progressive man, affiliating with the Democratic party. He is a strong supporter of Governor Hunt's policy of running the business affairs of the State in a businesslike way. A man of varied experience and broad knowledge, with an acquaintance of land values in Arizona probably not equaled by any member of the commission of which he is a part, Mr. Miller is a material addition to the strong personnel of the Commission
Who's Who In Arizona Volume 1 1913 Complied and Published by Jo Connors

FRANK S. INGALLS, Surveyor General, was born in Maine in 1851. His father, B. F. Ingalls, was a descendant of Edmund Ingalls, who landed in Massachusetts in 1629 a member of Captain Endicott's Company, and who was during the severe Puritanic reign fined two shillings for carrying an armload of wood on Sunday. Captain Ingalls' mother, formerly Miss Sophronia Thomas, was also a descendant of Puritan stock. Captain Ingalls received the benefit of the common schools, after which he entered the University or California. He was a classmate of John Hays Hammond, James Budd (afterward Governor of California) and other equally prominent men. He married before completing his course at the University. His wife was Madora Spaulding, daughter of N. W. Spaulding, a prominent Californian. Her father was several times Mayor of Oakland, Cal. ; was U. S. Sub-Treasurer at San Francisco, and one of the best known men in California. He was a 33d degree Mason and prominent in other organizations. Captain Ingalls is serving his third term as Surveyor General, which will expire in 1916. He has held practically all the political offices in the County of Yuma, as well as being Mayor of the city of that name, and served as a member of the Territorial Legislature. He came. to Arizona as a young man, in 1882, and has been actively identified with the advancement and upbuilding of the Territory since that time. He served as Assistant Secretary of the Territory when he first came to Arizona, and has since been connected with its official life. There have been born to Captain and Mrs. Ingalls six children, three of whom are living: Walter, draughtsman in the Surveyor General's office ; Charles, an invalid ; and Addie, Librarian Carnegie Public Library of Phoenix.
Who's Who In Arizona Volume 1 1913 Complied and Published by Jo Connors


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