Rose Garden PhotographsCarolyn Root (Day) Beach was born on McCormick Street in Prescott, Yavapai County, Arizona Territory, on December 18, 1902, the youngest daughter of Warren and Bridget L. (Gordon) Day.  Her father was a physician who came to Arizona in 1873 at the request of General George Crook and served as post surgeon at Ft. Verde until 1876.

By 1877, Dr. Day was practicing medicine in Prescott. His office was in the Lawler Building for many years. As a child, Carolyn accompanied her father in a buggy to the County Hospital, the Pioneers' Home, and on house calls. Carolyn, the youngest of ten children, remembered holding the horse while she waited for him, and sometimes she hitched up the horse and buggy and picked him up at his office at the end of the day. Dr. Day was often paid in kind, receiving groceries, milk and vegetables from patients who had little cash.

Carolyn and her siblings spent a lot of time swimming, picnicking and climbing Thumb Butte on her aunt’s ranch. On Sundays, she rode the streetcar from one end of town to the other just for fun. The family sang around the piano, and they never missed a parade. Her father took her to hear President Taft’s speech when he came to Prescott, because it probably would be the only time she would get to see an American president.

She attended grammar school at St. Joseph’s Academy and one year of high school in Prescott, where she was captain of the girls’ basketball team. Grace Sparkes, a Prescott pioneer and historian, was on her team. Their games were in the arena above the Nu-Way Market. Carolyn left school early and began working for some of Prescott’s merchants.

She worked at the Bashford-Burmister Company as a clerk, then as a bookkeeper at Goldwater Brothers, where she sometimes put in as many as fifty hours a week for ten cents an hour. Other employers were Joe Allen’s Nu-Way Market and Sam Hill Hardware Company, where she had a seasonal job in the toy department at Christmas time. Carolyn “sold everything that was in the store” and soon became a department manager, staying at Sam Hill’s for four years.

Carolyn met John Wesley Beach when he was a patient at Fort Whipple after World War I, and they married in 1923. They had two sons, Jack and Richard. John and Carolyn were married for almost forty years before John’s death. She then returned to work as a real estate agent until her retirement at age sixty-seven.

Carolyn lived on Grove Street in Prescott for fifty-five years. When she moved to a Mesa retirement home, she could not turn down an offer to work in the gift shop there. She later went to Tucson where she passed away on October 23, 1997, at the age of ninety-four, survived by a daughter-in-law, four grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews. She was buried in Mountain View Cemetery, Prescott.

Carolyn's mother, Bridget Day, is also commemorated in the Territorial Women’s Memorial Rose Garden.

Donor: Mona Lange McCroskey, April 2006
Photo Located: RGC-MS-39, Box B, F - Beach, Carolyn Root Day
Updated: 4/14/15, Brenda Taylor