By Elisabeth Ruffner 

This is the second part of two articles regarding the City Recorder's Notes.  The first was titled, "City Recorder's Notes Provide Some Amusing Insights into Prescott History - Part 1," published September 20, 1997 and is in the SHM Days Past Archives.  The notes for these articles are about the Prescott City Council, 1876 to 1885. The unknown writer of these minutes kept his journal on the back of the Bashford-Burmister Company's invoice forms.

Oct.13,1879: Marshall and deputies are ordered to wear a star three inches in diameter upon their breast within sight when on duty. 

May 15, 1880: Bids were asked for supplying 150 Box-Alders or Black Locust trees on Plaza. Geo. Lount was awarded the contract and the Supervisors were to set out and keep watered.

Aug.13, 1880: Contracted with Jacob Hinkell to dig three wells on the Plaza. These wells to be placed on the southwest, the northwest and the northeast corners of the Plaza. (Note: one of these wells can still be seen today on the southeast corner; usually at Christmastime it is lighted from within....don't miss it.) 

Sept.10, 1880: This record appears: "The council extended to the President of the United States the hospitality of the Village." 

Nov. 6, 1880: Pulleys and buckets were ordered placed on the Plaza wells. 

Jan. 17, 1881: Council voted against fixing the clock in the Court House and answered 'no' with a preamble and a resolution. 

July 7, 1881: First hose-cart bought for the fire dept. 

Jan. 3, 1882: W.N. Kelly re-elected mayor, Morris Goldwater and C.A. Randall elected council. Raible and Spencer contunued as councilmen. 
Evidently another epidemic of smallpox and entrance to city quarantined. 

Jan. 2, 1883: Election George D. Kendall, Mayor. Council, O.Lincoln and Geo. W. Sines. Goldwater and Randall hold over. 

May 15, 1883: A notice is published offering $50 for best plans and specifications submitted for a City Hall 40 by 60 to be erected on Capitol Block. The plan of F.G. Parker was accepted and the council advertised for bids. A city attorney was at this time employed. [The City Hall referred to here was a brick building in the present location of the County Building at 255 E. Gurley Street. The structure was later remodeled and became Prescott High School, then Prescott Junior High in 1939 and was demolished in 1973 to make way for the present structure.]

April 10, 1883: Upon motion that the city be directed to frame an ordinance authorizing the giving of a deed by the City of Prescott to the County of Yavapai in exchange for a deed from the county to the city for lot 22 in block 9 City of Prescott - [about where the Masonic Temple is today].  Inspection ordered of all stovepipe and fire hazards. [Note: here is inserted a hand written note with an arrow to the appropriate place in chronology...Feb.27, on official seal.]

May 21, 1883: All bids for City Hall rejected and the question of building laid on the table. 

April 21, 1884: Special election for purpose of submitting to the taxpayers the proposition of issuing $70,000 bonds for the purpose of institution, a Prescott Water Works consisting of a pump house on Miller Creek; also a reservoir and the necessary pipe line. The proposition carried 191 to 12. The Water Works contract was let to Inman Bros. A contract for a City Hall was let to F.G. Parker. 

July 1, 1884: Old Court House Lot 22, Block 9, advertised for sale. Interest on warrants issued was established at 8%. (Note: The Court House on Lot 22, Block 9 was a wood frame building erected in 1867 on N. Cortez Street. According to "Prescott: A Pictorial History", by Melissa Ruffner, the building housed the jail and Sheriff's office on the ground floor and a community meeting hall/courtroom on the second floor. Legal executions were carried out in the fenced yard behing the courthouse. Early church services were conducted here and in later years, it became the Bellevue Hotel. It was the scene of many social events. In November of 1900 the structure was razed.) Another bond election for $10,000 to extend Water Works and complete the City Hall requiring two-thirds vote lost by 74 to 45. 

Nov. 25, 1884: Election for selling $6,500.00 bonds for water system and City Hall carried 99 to 19. Bid for 100 cords of seasoned pine wood for the new pump at the pump house called. On the Court House lot and building the bid of F.G. Parker for $500.00 City Hall bonds and $1,600.00 City Warrants was accepted. 

Jan. 10, 1885: Election: Michael Goldwater, mayor. J.R. Walker and A.A. Moore Council. 

This brings us through Book No.1 of Prescott's Minute Books. Our past is full of great names and noble efforts and our home and country have been preserved and given to us by their endurance, planning and sacrifice.  As we review their acts and their devotion in years past, may it give us renewed strength to meet courageously those problems which confront us today. 

Illustrating image

Sharlot Hall Museum Photograph Call Number: (bub8026p)
Reuse only by permission.

The 'Old Courthouse' on North Cortez Street. The city listed the property for sale in July of 1884, as shown in the minutes kept by an unidentified recorder.