Author: Dennis Partridge

Yuma County, Arizona History

This county is formed out of the southwestern portion of the Territory, and is bounded on the west by the Colorado river. The valley of the Colorado is from two to ten miles in width; the soil is rich alluvial, and is generally covered with a dense growth of vegetation, and is well wooded with Mesquite and Cottonwood trees. Very little attempt has been made to cultivate these lands, except by the Indians. They in a rude way produce some vegetables, corn and wheat. The soil and climate are undoubtedly well adapted to the production of cotton, rice and sugar cane, as well as the cereals, and nearly all kinds of vegetables. Experiments made in planting figs, lemons and oranges encourage the belief that these fruits can be raised in abundance. The only obstacle in the way of extensive and profitable agriculture in the valley of this river is the frequent changes of its channel. Its waters can undoubtedly be controlled by levees and canals, and it would be policy for the government to make liberal grants of land to accomplish this object. The water once under control, and this would be an inviting field for investment and enterprise. The Gila river runs about 150 miles in a westerly course through this county; its valley is from one to three miles in width; the soil is rich and covered...

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Yavapai County, Arizona History

This county is bounded on the north and west by Mohave county; on the east by New Mexico, and the south by Maricopa county. Nearly the entire county has an elevation of from 5,000 to 6,000 feet above the level of the sea, and several mountains rise to the height of 12,000 to 14,000 feet. It contains large forests of excellent timber, and many valleys superior for agriculture. Grass is abundant everywhere, and the advantages for stock raising cannot be excelled. Considerable attention has been paid to farming, and with the exception of two dry seasons, the yield has been equal to that of other favored grain growing States. The farmers of this county have depended entirely upon the rain fall to grow their crops. Experience seems to prove that irrigation will have to be resorted to in order to insure a certain yield. The most prominent streams of water in this county are the Little Colorado, Verde, Salt, Sipicue and White rivers. They all abound in excellent fish; and turkey, bear and deer, are plentiful in all the mountains of Arizona. MINES Owing to the hostility of the Apache Indians, prospecting and mining has been much retarded over a large portion of the county, but sufficient explorations have been made to demonstrate the fact that it contains extensively rich mines of gold and silver-scarcely a mountain has been...

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Pima County, Arizona History

This county is bounded on the north by the Gila river; on the east by New Mexico; on the south by Sonora, and on the west by Yuma county. It is the oldest inhabited county in the Territory, and contains the most population. The western end of the county, to a line drawn north and south from the Gila river to the Sonora line, and passing a few miles west of Tucson, is uninhabited after leaving the Gila river, except by the Papago Indians, whose habitation will hereafter be described. This belt of country is composed of plains, covered with grass part of the year, and considerable portions of it with mesquite wood, and broken or detached chains of mountains. Wherever water can be found, grazing is excellent, and experience in sinking wells demonstrates that by this means water may be procured almost anywhere in Arizona-but without thus increasing the supply of water, much of this section must remain valueless. The south bank of the valley of the Gila extends the whole length of the county, and, as before described, has superior agricultural advantages. At Gila Bend, one hundred and fifty miles from the mouth of the river, the valley for a distance of twenty-five miles is from five to ten miles in width, and the soil is of the richest character. A company are now engaged constructing a...

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The Yuma, Cocopah and Maricopa Indians

About the year 1760, the Yumas, Cocopahs and Maricopas composed one tribe, known as the Coco Maricopa tribe. They occupied the country about the head of the Gulf of California, and for some distance up the Colorado River. At that time a dispute occurred, and what is now known as the Cocopah tribe split off, and the secessionists were permitted to go in peace. This pacific policy soon afterward induced the party, now known as Maricopas, to secede, also; but ‘this defection incurred the severe displeasure and hostility of the remainder, who now form the Yuma tribe. Many sanguinary conflicts ensued, when the Yumas succeeded in obtaining the aid of the Cocopahs, and, together, they gradually forced the Maricopas up the Colorado, until the Gila was reached. Knowing that the country to the north was occupied by the Amojaves, a large and warlike tribe, the retreating Maricopas turned their steps eastward, and followed the windings of the Gila River, pursued by their relentless enemies, until they reached the Great Gila Bend. Their spies were sent across this desert and returned with the intelligence that they had met a tribe living in well constructed and comfortable houses, cultivating the land, well clothed, and numerous and apparently happy. A council was called and it was agreed to send an embassy to the Pimas, to negotiate a defensive and offensive alliance, and...

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Maricopa County, Arizona History

This county is bounded on the north by Yavapai county; on the east by New Mexico; on the south by the Gila river, or Pima county, and on the west by Yuma county. The people are nearly all engaged in agriculture, the most of whom are located in Salt River Valley. This valley is one of the largest and most productive in the Territory; has been settled less than four years, and now contains sufficient population to sustain a county government. The lands are cultivated by irrigation, and there is an abundance of water in Salt River for the use of a vast extent of country. The people who settled here commenced with little or no means, and by industry and economy have constructed irrigating canals and made improved farms, and are now in a prosperous and comparatively independent position. The products raised for sale have been barley, corn and wheat. Wheat and barley are usually sown from November to February, and harvested in May. The average yield of wheat is from 20 to 40 bushels per acre, and of barley from 30 to 60, and sells at from three to four cents per pound. There has been a demand for all the grain that has been raised. After the wheat and barley are harvested, corn can be planted on the same soil, with ample time for it to...

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War with Mexico

On the 28th of March, 1846, General Zachary Taylor took up his position on the banks of the Rio Grande opposite Matamoras, and strengthened himself by the erection of fieldworks. Texas, at that time, claimed’ the Rio Grande as the western boundary of the republic, which not only embraced what is now known as Texas, but a large portion of what is now New Mexico. The Mexicans claimed that the River Nueces was the western boundary of the Lone Star republic. The territory between that river and the Rio Grande – a breadth of one hundred and fifty miles along the coast – they claimed was a part of their territory. It is well to remember that Mexico had no army of occupation in this disputed territory. General Taylor was notified by General Ampudia of the Mexican Army to break up his camp and in twenty-four hours to retire beyond the Nueces River. To this, General Taylor made no reply, and General Arista, who had succeeded General Ampudia in command of the Mexican army, on the 24th of April, advised General Taylor that “he considered hostilities commenced, and should prosecute them.” After this notification was received, General Taylor sent a party of dragoons, sixty-three in number, up the valley of the Rio Grande to ascertain whether the Mexicans had crossed the river. They encountered a larger force than their...

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Trouble with the Apache

Another difficulty arose between the Commissioner and the Apaches upon the killing of an Apache by one of Bartlett’s men, the Apaches contending with forcible logic and conclusive oratory, that the murderer should, then and there, be executed in their presence. Of this occurrence, Commissioner Bartlett gives the following account: “About one o’clock word was brought to me, that an Indian had been shot by Jesus Lopez, the Mexican teamster to whom I have before alluded. I at once ran to my door, and saw the greatest consternation in the place. The Indians, of which there were many about us at the time, were screaming and running in all directions, as though fearful of a general rising and massacre of their people. Our own party, too, were in great alarm, and every man ran for his arms, not knowing but that the Indians, who had so often been treacherously dealt with by the whites, might at once attack us, to be revenged for the loss of their companion. Mangus Colorado, Dalgadito and Coletto Amarillo, who were in our camp, seized their arms, and, mounting animals, retreated to a small hill a few hundred yards from the fort, where they stopped to see what was to follow, and make their escape in case of necessity. Many of their people crowded around them for protection and guidance. Some remained many minutes...

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Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo

“In the name of Almighty God: “The United States of America and the United Mexican States, animated by a sincere desire to put an end to the calamities of the war which unhappily exists between the two Republics, and to establish upon a solid basis relations of peace and friendship, which shall confer reciprocal benefits upon the citizens of both, and assure the concord, harmony and mutual confidence wherein the two people should live, as good neighbors, have for that purpose appointed their respective plenipotentiaries, that is to say: “The President of the United States has appointed Nicholas P. Trist, a citizen of the United States, and the President of the Mexican Republic has appointed Don. Luis Gonzaga Cuevas, Don Bernardo Couto, and Don Miguel Atristain, citizens of the said Republic; “Who, after a reciprocal communication of their respective powers, have, under the protection of Almighty God, the author of peace, arranged, agreed upon, and signed the following treaty of peace, friendship, limits and settlement between the United States of America, and the Mexican Republic; ARTICLE I. There shall be firm and universal peace between the United States of America and the Mexican Republic, and between their respective countries, territories, cities, towns and people, without exception of places or persons. ARTICLE. II. Immediately upon the signature of this treaty, a convention shall be entered into between a commissioner or...

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Treaty with Mexico

“The treaty was as follows: “Treaty with Mexico. Concluded December 30, 1853; ratifications exchanged June 30, 1851; proclaimed June 30, 1854′. “In the name of Almighty God: “The Republic of Mexico and the United States of America, desiring to remove every cause of disagreement which might interfere in any manner with the better friendship and intercourse between the two countries, and especially in respect to the true limits which should be established, when, notwithstanding what was covenanted in the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in the year 1848, opposite interpretations have been urged, which might give occasion to questions of serious moment: to avoid these and to strengthen and more firmly maintain the peace which happily prevails between the two republics, the President of the United States has, for this purpose, appointed James Gadsden, Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary of the same, near the Mexican Government, and the President of Mexico has appointed as Plenipotentiary ‘ad hoc’ his excellency Don Manuel Diaz de Bonilla, cavalier grand cross of the national and distinguished order of Guadalupe, and Secretary of State and of the office of Foreign Relations, and Don Salazar Ylarregui and General Mariano Monterde, as scientific commissioners, invested with full powers for this negotiation; who, having communicated their respective full powers, and finding them in due and proper form, have agreed upon the articles following: ARTICLE I. “The Mexican Republic...

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