By Bob Baker

The title is only one of John Hance’s outlandish claims made to fellow travelers and visitors to the Grand Canyon from the late 1800s to 1919. He and his brother George arrived in the new town of Prescott in the Arizona Territory in December, 1868 and purchased land to farm along Granite Creek. The following year, John sold his share of the farm and homesteaded Orme Ranch, living on his earnings as a teamster. While hauling wood and hay for Fort Whipple and Camp Verde, he often entertained his fellow teamsters and travelers with tall tales of the old west. When the military business dropped off, he went bankrupt.

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