Sharlot Hall Award Recipient 1994

For the first time since the inception of the Sharlot Hall Award the award committee found itself unable to choose between two exceptional nominees.  Both nominees have exhibited long-time commitments to the history of Arizona and have maintained a high quality of excellence in their fields for many years.  For these reasons, the award committee and the board of trustees decided to present two awards this year, 1994, to Doris Seibold and Ynida Smalley Moore. 


Yndia Smalley Moore was born in Tucson in 1902.  Her family moved from the midwest to Arizona at the end of the nineteenth century, and her father, George Smalley, became assistant to Territorial Governor Alexander Brodie.   He later founded the Tucson Post and served as City Editor of the Arizona Republican, so from earliest childhood Yndia was accustomed to moving among Arizona'a most influential citizens.

Yndia grew up in the Globe area, and attended the University of Arizona.  While in school, she and a friend also briefly operated a tea room that served painstakingly authentic Mexican food in a romantic setting.  After graduation, Yndia married James P. Moore, a member of General Dwight D. Eisenhower's European Army staff.  Together, she and her husband traveled all over the United States and Europe, until his death in 1946.  Yndia returned to Tucson, and began working for the local arts community as executive secretary of the Tucson Fine Arts Association.

In 1954, her father and some of her friends urged her to apply for the open assistant position at the Arizona Pioneer Historical Society.  Although Yndia had no formal training in museum work, the Board hired her.  She threw her enormous energy and enthusiasm into obtaining not only the required formal training, but help from specialists in the field, and the museum grew.  She was soon promoted to the curatorship, where her charm and organizational abilities would be most useful.  She planted the seeds for the society's journal, Arizoniana, which later became the Journal of Arizona History.  In 1959, Yndia became the society's Executive Director, where she remained until her retirement in 1964.

Yndia continued her father's legacy with Arizona newspapers, becoming historical editor for the Tucson Citizen in 1964.  She authored several articles for the Arizona Pioneer Historical Society's journal, and edited My Adventures in Arizona; Leaves from a Reporter's Notebook, which she compiled from her father's notes on local history.

In 1960, the University of Arizona honored her with its Seventy-Fifth Anniversary Medallion of Merit.  During Tucson's bicentennial celebration in 1975, she was selected as La Dona del Dia by the Tucson Heritage Foundation and the Arizona Historical Society.  She received the Spirit of Arizona Award from the state senate in 1987, and was awarded the Women on the Move Lifetime Achievement Award by the Tucson Young Women's Christian Association.