Rose Garden PhotographsHelen Mary (Wells) Heap was born in Prescott, Yavapai County, Arizona Territory, on October 19, 1871. Helen was the daughter of Rosalind (Banghart) and Judge Edmund W. Wells of Del Rio Ranch. She attended local schools, Mills College in Oakland, California, and then the Boston Conservatory of Music in Massachusetts.

She married Harry William Heap, owner of Prescott Sanitary Laundry and later a mayor of Prescott, on October 5, 1899.  Their wedding was held on her parents' thirtieth wedding anniversary, in the Wells' home on the southeast corner of Cortez and Carleton streets. The ceremony was called "the most brilliant society event ever witnessed in Prescott."  The Heaps moved to Phoenix after their wedding and had two sons: Harry Wells, born August 2, 1902, and Joe, born May 3, 1906. The family returned to Prescott in 1907.

Helen was a charter member of the Historical Society of Prescott.  She and Eva (Mclean) Favour donated some of the first rosebushes that were planted in the Sharlot Hall Museum’s Territorial Women’s Memorial Rose Garden. She was a member of the Eastern Star and Christian Scientist Church, as well as an honorary member of the Business and Professional Women’s Club and a charter member of the Monday Club. She was president of the women’s auxiliary of the Hassayampa Country Club in 1939.

Interviewed on her 90th birthday, Helen stated her simple philosophy of life:  "Give thanks to Our Lord for each day and enjoy to the fullest each day on earth that He gives you." When asked, "How does it feel to reach the ripe old age of 90?" she replied, "Just fine. I don't feel any different than when I was 60."  Helen suffered a stroke in 1961 and was a patient at the Prescott Community Hospital until her death on January 9, 1964.  She was buried in the Mountain View Cemetery mausoleum.

Her mother, Rosalind (Banghart) Wells, is also represented in the Territorial Women’s Memorial Rose Garden.  Her husband, Harry Heap, gave an oral history interview, which is available at the Sharlot Hall Museum Library and Archives.

Donor: Sharlot Hall Museum Rose Garden Committee
Photo Located: Historic Photo Collection - PO-391pb
Updated: 11/19/2015, D. Sue Kissel