Evelyn Edith (Duncan) Perkins, the daughter of Joseph Thomas and Josephine (Cowdrey) Duncan, was born on February 12, 1894, in Excelsior Springs, Clay and Ray Counties, Missouri.  Her father was a cattle dealer and her mother a school teacher.  She attended Drake University (1915) and later Kansas University, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1917.

Evelyn came to Arizona in 1921 to teach in the high school in Williams, Coconino County.  An account in the book Cowchips and Calluses (1976) listed her school board as consisting of a saloon owner, a bartender, a fiddler at the saloon, the town bootlegger and a “nondescript fellow without any special job.”

On May 2, 1923, Evelyn married cattle rancher Marion Nicholas “Nick” Perkins in Williams and moved to Perkinsville, Yavapai County, where she organized and taught in the school (1927).  The couple had four sons:  Marion Nichols Perkins, Jr. (b. Feb. 13, 1924); Stanley Ben Perkins (born at Mrs. Mary Cummings Maternity Home on South McCormick St. in Prescott, Yavapai County, Aug. 26, 1926); Thomas York Perkins (b. July 31, 1928); and David Goodwin Perkins (b. Aug. 19, 1932).  Her loyalty and devotion to Nick, their sons, and their way of life was a lesson to those who knew her.

Over the years, Evelyn extended hospitality to all who came to their ranch.  Genealogy gave her many hours of pleasure and many new friends, as did the collection of arrowheads and Indian artifacts found on the ranch.

Evelyn was a correspondent for the Smithsonian Institution in regard to archaeological discoveries in the area.  A gallant, brave, and generous woman with a brilliant mind, Evelyn is credited with the idea for the Rose Garden at Sharlot Hall Museum in Prescott.  She was a charter member of the Arizona and Yavapai Cowbelles and a member of the Chino Valley Community Church and the Rebekah Lodge.  She was also active in the Parent-Teacher Association in Chino Valley, Yavapai County, and in the Perkinsville area.

Evelyn died on February 25, 1970, at Yavapai Community Hospital in Prescott, and was buried in Mountain View Cemetery.

Donor:  Yavapai Cowbelles
Photo Located:  PO-2525pa
Updated:  04/13/2018, Tom Collins