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By Kathryn Reisdorfer 

As I watched the throngs of people enjoying music, commerce and camaraderie the night of the Acker Musical Showcase, I was reminded of what early Christmases must have been like in Prescott. People were on the street sharing with their neighbors-whether they were conscious of it or not-the heightened feelings of the season.

Christmas in the early days in Yavapai County was also a public affair. People, eager for company, flocked into the towns from remote mining camps and ranches. Even town-dwellers took part in the public activities. After all, in this newly settled area, most people were not set-up well enough to entertain friends in their homes. Still, far from many of their kin, they sought warmth and a sense of community. 

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Posted in 2001 By LaDawn Dalton

By Tom Brodersen 

The first store on Prescott's Courthouse Plaza was operated by Michael Wormser, a pioneer Jew from Alsace-Lorraine, France. Wormser purchased the adobe building on the southeast corner of Montezuma and Goodwin (next to the current Chamber of Commerce office) from Rafael Lucero of New Mexico.

For the next decade, Michael Wormser sold miners supplies and general merchandise on the Plaza. 

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Posted in 2001 By LaDawn Dalton

By William Peck 

In about 1823, fur trappers such as Jim Bridger, "Old Bill" Williams and James O. Pattie and his father, Sylvester, began penetrating the mountains of the west. There were about 400 of their numbers, diligent humans, animals who could carry a pack of traps, and supplies that would stagger a horse. Horses were of little use to them since stealth was essential and these men survived only because they could "out-Indian" the Indians.

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Posted in 2001 By LaDawn Dalton

By Ken Edwards 

Rufus Farrington was an early settler in the Arizona Territory, arriving in late 1863. He was one of the incorporators of the Fort Mojave and Prescott Toll Road Company that was given exclusive right to build and maintain a wagon road between the two communities.

His road station at Walnut Creek, northwest of Prescott, was more than once the victim of raids by "Apaches"("Apaches" was a common term that was generally applied to any hostile Indians by pioneers at this time in this area) who were blamed for almost everything in those days. In November of 1865, Indians stole a yoke of oxen, a Sharps rifle, provisions and bedding. They also reportedly burned 30 tons of hay and a two-horse wagon. A year later, his ranch north of Prescott was raided and he lost several oxen, milk cows, mules and a brood jack. 

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Posted in 2001 By LaDawn Dalton

By Robert Spude 

On November 19, 1904, Prescott's newspaper reported: 

"Mrs. F. M. Murphy entertained a number of guests in honor of Miss Nellie Drake, who returned recently from a visit east...The dining room which is in red, was beautifully decorated for the occasion and a dainty little souvenir in the shape of a Cinderella silver slipper filled with bonbons was given to each guest."

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Posted in 2001 By LaDawn Dalton

By Mona Lange McCroskey 

Recently the community of Prescott community lost a very remarkable lady. Services for Martha Yount Caldwell were held at the Congregational Church, a block from where she was born in 1912, soon after Arizona attained statehood. Martha had deep roots in Prescott. Her grandfather, John Criley, was a pioneer physician who came here in the 1890s, followed by her father, Dr. Clarence E. Yount, who emigrated to Arizona as a health seeker and married Dr. Criley's daughter Clara. Dr. and Mrs. Yount established their first home on the corner of Marina and Gurley Streets next door to the Congress Hotel, where the Hassayampa Inn now stands. Martha grew up in that neighborhood where she attended Washington School and the church, went to and participated in musical presentations at the Elks Theater and the Monday Club, shared dinners with her family at the Yavapai Club, and was a regular patron at the Carnegie Library. She ventured across town to the zoo at the top of Park Avenue. She was very involved in the music programs at the old Prescott High School on Gurley Street, where she graduated in the Class of 1930.

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Posted in 2001 By LaDawn Dalton

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