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By Ken Leja

The idea was to offer a one-day event where one could enjoy a wide range of history lectures, talks and multi-media presentations. Featuring authors, historians and educators discussing a variety of subjects relevant to Western history and heritage, each free talk would showcase the legend and lore of the wild West.

Thus began Prescott’s Western History Symposium. Fred Veil, then-sheriff (president) of the Prescott Corral of Westerners, floated the idea to local aficionados in 2003. The director of Sharlot Hall Museum at the time, Richard Sims, liked the idea and appointed Warren Miller, head of the Museum’s Education programs, to work with Veil to develop and present the first program.

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By Barbara Patton

The past two years have been challenging for our teachers and students alike in dealing with the invisible danger of Covid 19.
 

However, back in 1880, the dangers young Angie Mitchell faced in the wilds of the Arizona frontier were very visible and physical. They were certainly more adventurous than she expected when she agreed to teach in a new Tonto Basin school near present-day Roosevelt Dam.
 

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By Eric Jacobson

A deserted mansion in Clarkdale is all that remains in Arizona as evidence of the massive fortune of William Andrews Clark, a multimillionaire entrepreneur and the town’s namesake. Constructed in the 1930’s by Clark’s grandson, William T. Clark, the mansion partially burned in 2010 under suspicious circumstances.

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By Melanie Sturgeon

On July 23, 1914 Frances Willard Munds announced that she would seek the nomination for State senator from Yavapai County. This would not have been possible without her dedicated efforts as the leader of the Votes for Women campaign that granted Arizona women not only the right to vote in 1912 but to run for elected office. This was eight years before the passage of the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution.
 

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By Dave Lewis

Traditionally, the Hopi crafted necklaces, bracelets and other personal adornments from shell, stone and plant materials. Silver - scarce and expensive - was a late arrival on the Hopi mesas. In the 1890s a few Hopi artisans were taught to work with silver by their Navajo and Zuni neighbors. Early pieces were indistinguishable from Navajo or Zuni work.
 

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By Mick Woodcock

Last week we left Prescott with a dwindling supply of goods, but with little other evidence the Pullman strike was affecting the community. However, events in neighboring California affected Arizonans who were there at the time. The July 4th edition of the Arizona Weekly Journal-Miner had the following: “President Debs, of the American Railway Union, has ordered a strike on the entire Southern Pacific system, on account of the discharge of three brakemen, who refused to go out on a train last night with Pullman cars attached. Everything is tied up in consequence of this order….”

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By Mick Woodcock

What effect could a strike in 1894 by workers at the Pullman railway car manufacturing plant on the edge of Chicago have on a mountain town 1700 miles away? You might think little to none, which turned out to be true except for minor inconveniences. Prescott had rail service by 1887 from the Prescott and Arizona Central. However, this was never successful and it was eclipsed by the Santa Fe, Prescott and Phoenix in 1893. By 1894 the tracks went beyond the city and headed south toward Phoenix. Had the Pullman strike happened earlier, it would have had no effect on Prescott.

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By Bob Baker

After several train robberies in the Arizona Territory, the territorial legislature made train robbery a separate crime punishable by death. The law was passed on March 1, 1889. Less than three weeks after its passage, a sensational train robbery occurred that many believed would result in the death penalty for the train robbers under the new law.
 

On March 27, 1889, Prescott’s newspaper, the Arizona Weekly Journal-Miner, gave this account of the train robbery that occurred on March 20th while the eastbound Atlantic and Pacific train was stopped at Canyon Diablo Station east of Flagstaff.
 

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By Marjory J. Sente

Traveling Chautauquas lasting up to a week took place in Prescott into the 1920s and brought culture and educational experiences. They were a combination of lectures, dramas and musical presentations.
 

In July 1916 Frontier Days and Chautauqua Week kept the attention of Arizonans on Prescott. Frontier Days (featuring the rodeo) was held July 4-7; Chautauqua Week started on the 18th. The April 5, 1916 Weekly Journal Miner boasted that “July will be a banner month in the history of Prescott as the ‘Playground of Arizona’.”  It noted, “The striking difference between the two will furnish an attraction for both the fun-seeker and he or she who wants entertainment that is at the same time of educational benefit.”
 

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By Marjory J. Sente

Bishop John Heyl Vincent, the Chautauqua Institution’s founder, and Lewis Miller, an Ohio businessman with deep religious roots, called an assembly in 1874 to train Sunday school teachers. The site of the initial two-week meeting was an old Methodist revival camp on the shores of Lake Chautauqua near Jamestown, New York. Nearly 15,000 people attended the assembly, and out of it grew the Chautauqua Movement. The movement took its name from the nearby lake, an Iroquois word referring to two moccasins tied together, which describes the shape of the lake.
 

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