I went to the Sharlot Hall museum on Sunday after a wonderful hot yoga class. Sharlot Hall was an inspiration. A photographer, writer, rancher, politician, and historian (and so much more!) she was responsible for Arizona becoming a state, and for employing a thousand men during the great depression, and for saving so many priceless pieces of history. Read an overview on her here.
The original Governor’s Mansion of Arizona. When it was built, it cost $6,000! It is a log cabin, but each log was carved into a rectangular block, which helped with the home’s preservation. It stands on its original site. In the 1980s it was lifted up to repair the foundation, and the museum has a display of small items that had fallen between its floorboards over the years (buttons, marbles…). It has two separate residences inside, and two men lived and worked here. One brought his wife from New Jersey and she demanded a little more privacy, so a wall was added to their side. Her father gave her a gift to keep her safe in the Wild West–a “boot pistol.” It was a tiny gun that held a tiny round bullet, and I was told that its purpose was not what I expected. If she were captured by Native Americans, she could retrieve it from her boot and shoot herself in the head. The desert Apache were notorious for torturing captives.
Sharlot called this building below the “thousand hands” building, as it employed so many people for its construction. This was the first building built on this site for the museum. While it was being built, she lived in the Governor’s Mansion.
After the museum, Josh, Samantha, Nate, and I went to Watson Lake to see the Granite Dells. We couldn’t help but joke about how much the area looked like the ride Thunder Mountain Railroad at Disneyland. The hiking area was centered on an ancient rail line (the tracks are gone now) which had been created with dynamite blasting through the granite.