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The ‘dry heat’ arrives in Arizona

A postcard of Yuma possibly used as an advertisement to lure health seekers to the Southwest’s therapeutic climate.

In his 1878 book “Picturesque Arizona,” Enoch Conklin quotes Dr. A. M. Loryea: “The heat in Arizona, though high, is endurable in consequence of the dryness.” His statement may be the precursor to Arizona’s most quoted weather phrase: “but it’s a dry heat, so you don’t mind it.”

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Lady of the Red Rose Bush

A descendent of Margaret (Maggie) Griffiths Hunt McCormick’s original rose bush sits near the main entrance to Old Main on Northern Arizona University’s north campus, next to Daughters of the American Revolution’s historic George Washington Elm tree.

In 1865, Margaret (Maggie) Griffiths Hunt McCormick, the lovely young bride of then-Territorial Secretary of State Richard C. McCormick, traveled with her groom to their new home in Prescott. To remind her of her childhood days, she planted a rose bush from New Jersey next to her Arizona home, which was the Governor’s Mansion, as Richard was named the second territorial governor in 1866.

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Oliver Comstock, Unsung Arizona Hero (access required)

Sporting a pith helmet, linen suit and big white mutton chop sideburns, Oliver E. Comstock pedaled his bicycle along Tucson’s dusty roads with a soup kettle hanging from the handlebars. He will never be as famous as Wyatt Earp, but he was a real hero to Tent City residents.

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Arizona Firsts: Dr. Rosa Goodrich Boido, M.D. (access required)

Rosa Goodrich Boido was born in Navasota, Texas, Feb. 24, 1870, to Briggs Goodrich and Rosa Meador. Briggs Goodrich served as Arizona Territory’s attorney general from 1887-1888, and his brother, Ben Goodrich, represented Cochise County as a member of the Territorial Legislature in 1909.

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Heinrich Balduin Möllhausen: German writer, Arizona’s unlikely explorer (access required)

Long before movie cowboys like John Wayne, Gary Cooper and Randolph Scott arrived on the scene, Arizona hosted a different brand of frontiersman. One unlikely adventurer, Heinrich Balduin Möllhausen, was among the first to sketch the Grand Canyon, paint watercolors of the Cocopah, Mojave and Navajo Indian tribes, and recount his observations for a world audience. Möllhausen’s biographer, Preston Barba, referred to him as the James Fenimore Cooper of Germany.

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Gossip about the Pimas (access required)

Inscribed “Pima Buck,” this meticulously posed photograph of a young Pima man was taken in 1894, probably in a Tucson studio. While inherently demeaning, the photo was indicative of the “noble savage” motif then popular among Easterners and others.

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Will C. Barnes (access required)

Will Croft Barnes is best remembered for his concluding opus, “Arizona Place Names,” a book published in 1935, preceding his death a few months later. The book is still in print, which is a testament to its enduring value to both readers and scholars.

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Rations Day at San Carlos (access required)

With little else to look forward to, rations day on the San Carlos Apache Reservation was an event. As evidenced by this photo, taken about 1895, men, women and children, on horseback, muleback, and accompanied by their dogs, converged on agency headquarters to receive their weekly allotment.

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