Exploring the history of Phoenix, Arizona and a little bit of Los Angeles and San Francisco, California.

The day I met Miss Sunnyslope of 1949


I remember the day that I met Miss Sunnyslope, although the year, which must have been in the early '90s, is kinda foggy in my memory. But she made a vivid impression on me!

She was in a thrift store in Sunnyslope that I used to go to, on Hatcher and Central Avenue, where I looked for antique cuff links, tie pins, and that sort of thing. I wore a suit to work, and enjoyed the slightly-goofy aspect of "accessorizing" with old-time stuff. I was on the lookout for Valley Bank cuff links, and never found them, but I found a lot of cool old stuff at that thrift store. And Miss Sunnylope of 1949.

She overhead me talking to the clerk and approached me, saying that she had a whole collection of wonderful stuff that her husband had left behind. I asked her if she would bring them there to the thrift store, where I could see them, and possibly buy them. Looking back now, that wasn't really fair to the store owner, but I didn't know what else to do. She did. She insisted that I come and look at them, at her house nearby.

I went there a few days later with my girlfriend, and it was quite a sight. She lived there with her sister, and from what I could tell having won Miss Sunnyslope in 1949 had not made her rich. She showed me a newspaper article, and I've been looking for it ever since. There she was, young and beautiful in a one-piece "bathing beauty" swimsuit in 1949.

I don't recall if I paid her for the collection of tie pins, cuff links, etc. that she gave me, which included the case. She may have just given it to me, she was so pleased to have visitors. It didn't look like the ladies got many visitors!

I still have the case, and over the years I added more things to my collection. I haven't worn a suit for many years, but through the '90s I did, and if you looked carefully I was also wearing a bit of Sunnyslope history.

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The natural beauty of Sunnyslope, Arizona


When I moved back to Phoenix, in 1989, I spent a lot of time driving around, just looking at stuff. I did find a job, and looking back it doesn't seem like it took that long, but at the time it seemed like all I was doing was waiting. So I noodled around town, looking at stuff, and was particularly fascinated by the Sunnyslope area. It had a natural beauty that made me think.

If you're familiar with Sunnyslope, if you've known it all of your life, you may be wondering if I'm kidding here about its natural beauty. But I had just moved from California, and I was seeing it through a Californian's eyes. I'll see if I can explain.

Natural beauty, whether it's a view of the ocean, or a mountain view, is at a premium where I lived in California. I remember looking at an apartment complex and the one (1) apartment in the complex that had even the tiniest view from the patio was rented at a premium. And you had to go out onto the patio and lean out, and look past other buildings. But sure enough, you could see the ocean from there. The same thing applied to being able to see mountains. Mostly in that crowded mass of buildings and freeways called Southern California, an average person like me would never be able to afford a "view". And I thought that was a shame, as there is so much potential for enjoying the natural beauty of that place.

So when I moved to Phoenix, I got an apartment with a view on a golf course. I was pretty much living for golf in those days, and I was just tickled. I couldn't afford that in Los Angeles! And as I noodled around town I was amazed at the mountain views. The nicest area that I saw was called Arcadia, with wonderful views of the mountain, and the city. Being from Los Angeles, I knew that was where the rich people lived, up where they could look down on the city. The rich people lived on the slopes, and the poor people (like me) lived in the valleys.

But Sunnyslope surprised me. The rich people didn't live there, far from it. Those mountain views didn't bring up the property values, or increase the rent. Sunnyslope has brightened up a lot since I first drove around in it in 1989, but it's still not a place to brag about. When I first saw it, people were telling me not to stop at the Circle K.

Sunnyslope is on the southern edge of the western edge of the Phoenix Mountains, which begins just east of 19th Avenue and ends with Camelback Mountain to the east. It's all one continuous range, and if you have more energy that I do you can now hike just about all of the way from west to east. That is, from the Sunnyslope area to the Arcadia area.

Yes, in the meantime I've learned more about how one sunny slope of the Phoenix Mountains became Sunnyslope, while the other became Arcadia, but in 1989 all I saw were mountain views. Look at the mountains when you drive around, and you can see them, too.

Image at the top of this post: Sunnyslope, Arizona in the 1960s. You're looking north towards the Phoenix Mountains on Central Avenue.

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The wonderful West of the Imagination


Since I'm interested in the True West, most people assume that I have no interest in the West of the Imagination. This is simply not true - I love them both. As I grew older and wiser I learned there was a difference, but both have a place for me in my heart and in my mind.

Like most people my age, I grew up with Sunday afternoon movies that featured John Wayne. I've since revisited some of those movies, now that I'm older and wiser, and while I know that Texas doesn't look like Monument Valley, I'm willing to let it go. And by the way, if you think all John Wayne movies are the same, I suggest that you look again. Yes, some are outrageous and goofy, but some really do help paint a picture of the real West, such as "The Searchers". This one is actually fairly painful.

For me though, the West of the Imagination hit its peak with "The Wild Wild West" which I watched as a kid. And even then I knew it was exaggerated, but I didn't care, and still don't. I moved onto Clint Eastwood's "Spaghetti Westerns" and even learned a bit about the real West, and how a territory becomes a state by watching "Hang 'em High". Yes, I know that these movies aren't meant to portray the real West like a documentary does, but there's a lot of good stuff there.

If you know how colorful the Victorian era was, you can appreciate the TV show "Bonanza". Yes, that show was meant to showcase the new technology of color TVs, but it's actually historically accurate. The Victorian era was an explosion of color, made possible by the industrial revolution, which made mass produced products, including dyes, affordable to ordinary people. And the Cartwrights would have had the money to buy some nice stuff!

So please don't walk up to me and tell me that all of my favorite Westerns aren't 100% historically accurate. I know that, and I don't care. I love the True West, and the West of the Imagination!

Let's head 'em off at the pass!

Image at the top of this post: John Wayne in the West of the Imagination in 1956 - The Searchers. https://www.amazon.com/Searchers-John-Wayne/dp/B001QJUX24

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The joy of a sentimental journey back to old-time Phoenix



I'll admit it, I love the feeling of a sentimental journey. Most people love to go back and trace their footprints, looking back fondly on days gone by. Yes, I know some people scoff at that, but who needs them? It's a delicious feeling, and a very personal one.

I collect old photos of Phoenix, and I'm usually interested in learning more about the history of Phoenix before I got there, which was 1977. But lately I've been indulging in some sentimental journeys, and sharing them on this blog. Mostly I've written about cars I've loved, and lost, and the good golf shots I've made (which weren't many!). If you're scoffing at that, I'm sorry that you feel that way. If you ask "what was I thinking?" I can just reply that I was young, and to me all is forgiven.

Sentimental journeys are important to good mental health. Looking back at your life and seeing nothing but the mistakes you've made (and hopefully you've made a lot!) can have you not wanting to get out of bed in the morning. As a person who struggles to do his best every day, I try to look to my own personal past and focus on what went right, what I learned, and how I can apply it today.

Whether they were simpler times or not, at least I understand them better than I understand now. I'm working furiously to stay caught up with the latest technology, the latest news, today. When I look back to the old days I can "wrap my arms around it", and understand, because I was there, and also because I've had many years to try to understand it.

Many of the places that I knew in Phoenix are gone, but that doesn't mean that they've disappeared in my heart, and in my mind. I've been known to stand in front of a brand-new building, just to put my feet in the same place they were when I was 19. I'm not wishing that the old places would return, or that I could be 19 again, I just like the feeling that being there conjures up. If you've ever done this, you understand. If not, give it a try.

Sentimental journeys can make ordinary places extraordinary. And in a world that I often have found dull and dreary, I love to be able to conjure up some magic, just for myself. I especially like to walk around the ASU campus and recall the time I wiped out on my bicycle, or the way I felt sitting there on the bench in front of the art building waiting for the little red-haired girl to come out so that we could go to the Chuckbox.

I'm visiting these places right now in my imagination, and hopefully I'll be able to visit them again IRL (In Real Life). My wonky right ankle makes going to these places painful, but for the joy of a sentimental it's worth it.

Thank you for taking a sentimental journey with me!

Image at the top of this post: With my brand new Saturn SC in 1992, Phoenix, Arizona at my girlfriend's house on 7th Street, just south of Northern Avenue, in Phoenix. Ah, those were the days!

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How not to go "power mad" about Phoenix history


I've always been interested in history, and in addition to reading about it in books, I like to ask people questions about what they remembered "back in the day". This has led to me to many wonderful people, who have patiently answered my questions, explained things, and showed me a world that I was too young to have ever seen. I can't thank these people enough, and in this blog I try to repay a bit of it, in what I guess is called "paying it forward", or "linear kindness". I can never pay them back, so I pass it along as graciously as I can.

I was also fortunate to have met several people who became "power mad" when I asked them about history, and what they remembered. I discovered that these were people who had never really been asked anything of any importance, and this was their big chance to become power mad. No, it didn't start with Facebook, although I see a lot of it there, of course.

I sympathize with these people, who have often been shocked to think that they have something that someone else might want from them, just in terms of information. And the pattern tends to always be the same in what I call the "power dance". A straight answer is never given. Often I'm asked to come back later (a big power thing!) or it's given to me as a puzzle, or a riddle, and I'm supposed to guess. You may recognize this sort of frustrating thing done by people on Facebook, who want to stretch out their moment of glory for as long as possible. Sadly, there's nothing to be done with these people, and I regret having to set them aside. The most important lesson I learned from these people was to not be like them.

As I drift into the age that these people were when I first started asking questions of them (a senior citizen), I'm anxious to share. No power struggle, no games. If you ask me a question I'll either answer it, or say I don't know. Anything else would be against my principles. My age hasn't driven me power mad, nor has it made me an "old fool". At least I hope not.

Image at the top of this post: Looking north at the Fleming, and the Title and Trust buildings in 1945, 1st Avenue and Washington, Phoenix, Arizona.

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Attitudes towards money in old-time Phoenix



Like most people, I have a fascination with money. When I was a kid, of course, I had no idea how it worked, and I'm still learning. One of my brothers had figured that it came from grocery stores, as our mom would give the cashier a small amount of money, and get back lots more (change). As I write this, I have money in my wallet. Well, pieces of paper that other people will accept for goods and services. I haven't gotten any bitcoins yet, but I'll probably get some, just to do it. Just a bit. You have to be careful with money!

And all of this is making me wonder about the attitude towards money in old-time Phoenix. Let's time-travel to Wall Street in Phoenix, Arizona, right around the year 1900.

It's 1900, and we're young, and progressive, and we really have no memories of the "Greenbacker Movement" of the old days. But I know a lot of old-timers who wouldn't even think of accepting anything but silver and gold coins. I tried to give the landlady a paper dollar bill yesterday and see just stared at me - I had to go get a dollar coin, which is the only thing that she considers real money.

I'm a smart boy, and I plan on being so rich that I'll put my money in a bank. I like that bank on Wall Street, on Washington between 1st Avenue and Center [Central Avenue] called "The Valley Bank". I know the Christy family, and they're good people. I've also heard how rich Moses Sherman is, who lives mostly in Pasadena, so he must know what he's doing. I'm told that if you leave your money with them, they'll pay you what's called "interest" and when you take your money out, there's more of it.

I've been reading up on how money works. Seems like there's a big treasury somewhere in Kentucky where all of the gold of the United States is stored. I hope they're protecting it! And I understand that I can go there anytime I want, and get the equivalent of gold and silver in exchange for this here dollar bill. See? It says "Silver Certificate" right on it.

OK, I understand, you don't trust it. But I believe that someday everyone will, and they'll consider these little pieces of paper as real money. And who knows? Maybe someday money will just be things made up of that stuff called "electricity"!

Image at the top of this post: 1900 ad for the Valley Bank, Wall Street, Phoenix, Arizona.

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Living in less-than-fashionable neighborhoods in California and Arizona


If you want to start an argument, just try to describe any neighborhood that isn't expensive, or even middle class. OK, you start, I'll wait. Yes, I suppose "affordable" is as good a term as any. I lived in those types of neighborhoods, both in Arizona and in California, through my twenties. It was a choice I made, driven mostly by my anti-social refusal to share an apartment, or a house, and that I didn't have enough money for anything more, mostly because a big chunk of my income I used just to keep my car alive. And I like to describe these neighborhoods as "less-than-fashionable", a term I like that I learned from "A Funny Thing Happened to Me On The Way To the Forum". The main character introduces his neighborhood, with a wry smile, as "less-than-fashionable". I knew what he meant. There were some shady characters around, including a house of ill repute, in his neighborhood.

To me, the first neighborhood I where I lived in Phoenix was just affordable. I don't recall being nervous there, although there were definitely some dangerous things going on around there. No one said anything critical of my choice of neighborhoods until I moved to a particularly "less-than-fashionable" one in Tempe, and a friend of my absolutely gasped, wondering what in the world I was doing there. It was affordable, what can I say?

In California, the less-than-fashionable neighborhoods where I lived gave me an insight into places that I know a lot of "middle class" people have never seen. And yeah, it was kinda rough. But it was what I could afford. To give you some idea how "less-than-fashionable" one particular neighborhood was, nowadays the west part of the neighborhood has an entirely different name. If you look at a map of the San Fernando Valley, look at West Hills - it was just part of Canoga Park when I lived there.

The extremes of wealth and poverty that I saw in Los Angeles is part of what drove me out of there, and back to Phoenix. Many of my California friends consider all of Arizona to be "affordable", if you know what I mean. It's a snooty attitude, but I let it ride.

Image at the top of this post: At a "less-than-fashionable" neighborhood in Tempe, Arizona in the 1980s, on Wildermuth Street.

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Sitting under Ichabod with Judge Ruppert in 1901 Phoenix, Arizona


If you're a regular reader of these goofy little imaginary stories that I write about old Phoenix, you know about Ichabod, and Judge Ruppert, and maybe even about the Electric Belt that my imaginary time-traveling character sent away for in 1893. If not, please stay with me, and I'll try to explain as I go along. The most important thing to know about this is while the character I'm writing about is imaginary, everything else in this story actually existed. Especially Judge Ruppert, who was a big, big dog!



Walk with me. It's 1901, I've had my Sanden's Electric belt for many years now, and it's cured my lower back problems. I've also been exercising, and stretching, and eating better, but I'm sure that it's the electricity and the magnets that did the job. We're walking along Melinda's Alley, which runs east and west between Adams and Washington. We just crossed Center Street [Central Avenue] and since we've been walking for a while, and it's a hot day, let's sit under a tree.

There's a big eucalyptus tree just west of Center Street, behind the Occidental Boarding House. I don't know how long it's been there, but it's big, and everyone calls it "Ichabod", after the character in the book "Sleepy Hollow", I guess.

Look! There's Judge Ruppert, Ed Ruppert's dog, the Great Dane. And I do declare, that is one big dog! I've heard tell that he weighs nigh on up to 175 pounds. No, I mean the dog, not Ed. I don't think Ed weighs that much. And don't worry, he's friendly, and we're old friends. Here, Judge! Good dog.

I'm feeling so much better since I've been using my Electric Belt every day. That Doctor Sanden is a genius! You should get one, you look like you're walking around with a stoop. Very funny! Yes, you're walking around with me, I get it.

I like it here, and I'm in no hurry. Let's sit in the shade, with Judge Ruppert. I like Phoenix.

Image at the top of this post, Judge Ruppert with his owner Ed in 1901, Phoenix, Arizona

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The value of old people in understanding history


I've always like old people. When I was a kid, old people would mess up my hair, call me "Butch", tell me what a fine young man I was growing up to be, and just in general make me look forward to becoming an adult. You know, getting old. Some of my fondest memories are of old men teaching me how to shake hands "like a real gentleman", and the old ladies who admired my hair. Presumably these old people were in their twenties, or thirties.

Although I'm far from old (just slightly past middle-aged, which how I plan on describing myself through my sixties, seventies, eighties, nineties, and one hundreds), I'm beginning to realize how important my age and experience is for the young folks, and how it can be squandered if I simply rant about the government, or talk about my aches and pains.

I've always asked old people what it was like "back in their day". And while it might seem kind of insulting, what I'm asking was what it was like when they were my age. That is, when they were eight, or twenty, or sixty. Most old people I've met are under the mistaken impression that I want to hear about their aches and pains, or how much they dislike the current government. But every once in a while an old person will help me to time travel, and it's wonderful. They aren't just launching out into long, boring stories, they're answering my questions. These people are rare, and precious, to me.

The old people who have helped me the most have shared two things: what they remember themselves in a long life, and what they've discovered in books, or wherever. I've always had a long reading list, which includes old movies, and old songs. The internet has made it easier for me to find these things, but there are only so many hours in the day, so I'll never live long enough to catch up with the list, which grows every day.

My dad always used to say, "There's no fool like an old fool", and it always worried me, because I knew that I would get old, and I hoped that I wouldn't become a fool. I wanted age to empower me, both with my own experiences, and understanding the experiences of people who came before me. I have a huge appetite to learn more about history, especially in the places I care most about, California and Arizona, and I very much appreciate the old people who will talk to me, and especially answer my questions.

If you're an old person who has helped me, thank you so very much! And I'll try to do the same thing you did, for as long as this old body holds out.

Image at the top of this post: Old Folks Day in 1920, Mesa, Arizona

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How dense traffic creates a more enjoyable city for people like me


This morning as I was enjoying my coffee, sitting in my backyard, I was listening to the call of the peacocks at Sahuaro Ranch, and mourning doves, and I could also hear the steady flow of dense traffic, which is so thick and consistent that it sounds like a river. And that river, fortunately for me, is a place I've rarely been in, either in Phoenix or in Los Angeles.

I've been lucky, I haven't commuted much. When I lived in Los Angeles, the distance from my apartment to where I worked was about two miles. When I lived in Santa Barbara, my job was so close that I could walk to it, although I rarely did. My longest commute has been from here in Glendale to downtown Phoenix, about twelve miles, and that was for only a few years. Like I say, I've been lucky.

Nowadays my "commute" is to my computer, and has been for years. Before that, it was just a few blocks to Glendale Community College, where I taught until 2012. Usually I drove there, but sometimes I walked, and even biked there. And looking back on all of this, I realize that the dense traffic around me has created a great excuse for me to live in a much smaller world.

The Woman in My Life in Los Angeles accused me of "living in a triangle" - work, the gym, and my apartment. Of course I often visited her, which made my tiny world a square, but her place really wasn't all that far away, either. People who know that I lived in LA asked me how I dealt with the traffic. I didn't. On the rare occasions that I needed to be on the freeway, I would take along a book. When traffic came to a halt (which I've never seen it do like that in Phoenix), I would read a bit, and when it started to move, I'd move. When I tell people in Phoenix that, they rarely believe me. Yes, freeways have been "parking lots" in LA for a long time. I would literally put the car in park and read. I got to read several books that way!

To me, dense traffic is similar to bad weather. I may not be going anywhere today (maybe the gym, which is just a few blocks away), and it makes me happy to think that "I don't have to go out in that stuff". And I sympathize with people who do, and somehow knowing that just seems to make me more happy with my smaller world.

And just to be clear on all of this, if you're one of those people who have to go out in that stuff, I appreciate what you do. I order things online all of the time, and I know that the drivers who have to do that are doing something that I've never had to do, and I appreciate it. They're the people who keep my two favorite cities, Phoenix and Los Angeles, running, and without them people like me would be in big trouble. So I thank them when I can, and I thank you.

I've just made another cup of coffee, and I'm going back to listen to the steady flow of the river.

Image at the top of this post: traffic in Phoenix in 1973

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Celebrating Chicken Day in 1921 Glendale, Arizona


When I first started running across ads for "Chicken Day" while looking at old Phoenix newspapers at the Library of Congress site, I immediately liked the idea. As far as I can tell, it only happened in 1921, in spite of how much the Glendale District Commercial Club made it seem as if it had been a celebration before that year, with the hopes of it continuing year after year. And as an old Marketing guy, I understand that it's just promotion. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn't. I'm sure that a lot of people were excited at the time. Let's time-travel back to 1921, and go to Chicken Day in Glendale. Come on!



I've been looking forward to Chicken Day ever since I saw it in the paper, how about you? What? You've never even heard of it? Well, my friend, get ready for the greatest celebration that the city of Glendale has ever seen. It's today, May 20th! Chicken Day!

Yes, I'm a member in good standing of the Glendale District Commercial Club, and a proud citizen of Glendale, Arizona. And that's why I'll be wearing my chicken suit. I have an extra one if you want to wear one, too? No? I understand.

I've lived in Glendale since old man Murphy started all of it, and I'm proud to say that I'm a temperate man, proud to live in a temperate community. Help me on with this chicken suit, will you? And I could sure use a shot of your whiskey! Just for medicinal purposes, you know, to get my courage up.

How do I look? Wait 'til the girls see me! It itches a bit, but I'm sure that'll go away. I'll only have to wear it from 10 am to 10 pm. Hand me that basket of eggs, and let's go to the parade. Chicken Day! This is going to be great!

I foresee a future when Chicken Day is more popular than the Rose Parade in Pasadena. Long after people have forgotten about the roses, they'll be thinking of the chickens! And someday I'm sure that whenever people think of chickens, they'll think of Glendale, Arizona! Boost for Glendale!

Here comes the parade. I think that I see Mr Lamon and Mr. Rommell. It had to be postponed because of them, but now it's here. Hooray! Boost for chickens! Boost for Glendale!

1921 article about Chicken Day, Glendale, Arizona

Wow, there must be about 4,000 people watching the parade. This is sure going to put Glendale on the map. You just wait and see, Glendale will be known far and wide as the Chicken capital of the United States, maybe of the whole world!

I'm having a lot of fun, but it's a hot day, and this chicken suit making me even hotter. I think I feel faint. Thank you for celebrating Chicken Day with me!

1921 ad for Chicken Day, Glendale, Arizona

1921 ad for Chicken Day, Glendale, Arizona


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Driving a Saab Sonett in Phoenix in 1979


In a long life that has included a lot of dumb things that I'm glad I did, driving a Saab Sonett in Phoenix is one of my fondest memories, and worst nightmares. Time-travel back to 1979 with me.

The car I drove down to Phoenix with, two years before, had been turned into a mashed-up little tin can by someone who tried to pass me on the left as I was turning left. Welcome to Phoenix! I only broke a leg, and it soon healed up. And for some reason, I wanted a Saab Sonett.

My Saab Sonett on Camelback Mountain in 1979. Wonderview Road.

If you've never seen one, or even heard of one, that's not surprising. They were cool-looking cars, and fun to drive, but mechanically awful, which is surprising because Saabs tend to be pretty well-made cars. My Sonett wasn't.

The Sonett in 1979 at the Saguaro Apartments, 4201 N. 9th Street, Phoenix, Arizona.

I spent every spare minute, and every spare dollar, keeping that car alive. The tiny little V-4 engine, which was nearly impossible to get to (that tiny black bump on the hood was the only opening), overheated no matter what I tried. Luckily, it didn't spend much time in traffic, as I really don't like spending time in traffic. It had a little plastic button that said "air conditioning", and a compressor that should have blown cool air, but it never did.

The Sonett at ASU in 1981, back of the Art Building, just south of the Chuckbox.

As my twenties wore on, and after I graduated from ASU and moved to California, I started feeling as if there might be more to life than just always fiddling with a temperamental little foreign car. Even the Saab dealership really had no idea what to make of it. Luckily, I was close enough to Solvang to have it serviced there.

The Sonett just before I sold it in Santa Barbara, 1986

The second time I paid to have the transmission rebuilt, I'd had enough. I polished it up and sold it, and bought my first "grown up" car, a good solid American car with an automatic transmission. I was nearly thirty at that time, and knew that I wasn't a kid anymore. I remember how sad I was to realize that I was getting old, and needed something reliable, and ordinary. And that's when I bought the Mustang, the car brought me to Los Angeles, and ultimately brought me back to Phoenix.

The Mighty Mustang, which brought me back to Phoenix. This is in front of Delta Motorsports, which was on Bell and 27th Street.

Thank you for driving around Phoenix in my Saab Sonett with me! Sorry the air conditioning doesn't work.

Image at the top of this post: My Saab Sonett in 1979, on Wonderview Road on Camelback Mountain, Phoenix, Arizona

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Complaining about politics in old-time Phoenix


Let's time-travel back to old-time Phoenix and complain about politics. I figure 1909 would be a good time to do it, when President Taft was visiting Phoenix.

It's 1909, and we're sitting near the Adams Hotel, which is on the northeast corner of Central Avenue and Adams, in Phoenix. And here comes President Taft. By the way, that building back there that says "New York Life Insurance", the Gooding Building, is still in Phoenix in the 21st Century - it was "modernized" in the 1950s.

Anyway, let's complain about the government. I'll get it started - These are terrible times! Politicians are all just a bunch of crooks, lining their pockets. Don't know what the country's coming to! Taft? I don't know. That's him there, the big guy, they must have reinforced the frame on that horseless carriage. Derned waste of taxpayer money, I'd say. No, I don't pay any taxes, but that's not the point.

Your opinion? What makes you think I want to hear your opinion? And put out that cigar, it smells like guano. Roosevelt? I don't know, I hear he regrets not running. I've heard tell that he wants to help Arizona, and is friends with Dwight Heard, maybe they're thinking about getting some of that Federal money to build a dam or something. I'll believe it when I see it. Bunch of darned fools if you ask me. Hand me the bottle.

Yeah, Taft's a darned fool, just like most of the presidents lately. Now Grover Cleveland, that was a president! They don't make them like that anymore. What? No, I have no idea what he did, I just know that he wasn't a darned fool. Or maybe he was. Give me one of your cigars.

Hold my whiskey bottle, I'm going to go up and shake hands with the President.

Image at the top of this post: President Taft visiting Phoenix in 1909. You're looking southwest on Central towards Adams.

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Visiting California in 1859 with Richard Henry Dana, Jr.


As long as the book "Two Years Before the Mast" is, it's one of those books that I wish was longer. And specifically I wish that Richard Henry Dana Jr. had written more about his revisit to California 24 years later. Of course, no matter how much he would have written, I would have wanted more. That's why I love books like that. Warning: spoilers! California changed from 1835 to 1859.

When Dana was 20 years old, in 1935, he took a couple of years of from college to spend time as an ordinary working sailor on a ship that sailed to the then-practically unknown coast of California. Two Years Before the Mast meant that he spent two years on the ship - "before" is an old-fashioned way of saying "in front of", which is where he spent his time on the ship from 1835 to 1836. It's a fascinating view of California, when it still belonged to Mexico, which he describes in wonderful detail.

In 1859, Dana went back on a "sentimental journey" and was surprised by what he saw. It had only been twenty-four years, but in that time the San Francisco Bay had gone from being mostly just a empty place to being a booming city, with hotels, restaurants, lights and life. Of course, 1859 San Francisco would seem old-fashioned and quaint to our eyes, but when you see it through his eyes you get a strong feeling of how much had changed, and how modern it was.

Business was booming there on what used to be a sleepy little coast. He mentions that Monterey, which he considered very beautiful, had been passed over by the new wealth, and in fact Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, and San Diego hadn't changed much. The big change was in San Francisco!

He described Santa Barbara as still looking like a sleepy little Mexican town in 1859, with mostly adobe buildings, and few more modern ones. The Mission was there, as it still is today, of course, and it must have been a very beautiful sight, as is it is now, with the little town at its feet and the mountains behind.

Los Angeles, which went by the name of El Pueblo when he was twenty, is still described by Dana as being 30 miles away from San Pedro, where his ship docks. The full name of Los Angeles, by the way, in case you never heard it is "El Pueblo de Nuestra SeƱora la Reina de Los Angeles". Once it became an American town, in 1849, the English-speaking people slowly moved away from calling it "El Pueblo" to calling it "Los Angeles", and then with the "a" sound for the "o", and the soft g, as it's pronounced today. That is, instead of "LOs AnGeles", "Las Anjelis".

And in 1859 there still wasn't much happening in San Diego, although he sees that there's no longer traces of the old places where he used to prepare hides.

It's a nice sentimental journey, and if you've read "Two Years Before the Mast", the 24 years after is fun to go back to the future!

Thank you for visiting California with me, and Richard Henry Dana, Jr.!

Image at the top of this post: Richard Henry Dana, Jr. looking probably how he looked in his forties. By the way, Dana Point is named after him.

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Sleeping on the roof of the Vendome Hotel in 1908, Phoenix, Arizona


It's 1908 and I'm staying at the Vendome Hotel, which is just west of 3rd Avenue on Washington, in Phoenix, Arizona Territory.

It's summer and it's hot. And I mean real hot. I'm from California and it never gets this hot in Los Angeles. Well, I'll make the best of it, I'm here in town to make some sales of novelty items, and that's what I'll do. Tomorrow I'll start going door-to-door, make some sales! No other salesmen are in town, that's for sure! And the summer rates at the Vendome are low.

1912 ad for the Vendome Hotel, Phoenix, Arizona.

Tonight I'm going to get some rest. And luckily, this hotel has cots up on the roof. I've been talking to the manager of the place, and he assures me that it's the only way to sleep in Phoenix in the summer. When the sun goes down, you go up on the roof, toss a bucket of water on the cot, and drench the sheets and it'll be as cool as if you were sleeping by the ocean. Well, that's what he said.

Well, it's nighttime, and it's still hot. Doesn't it ever cool off in this town? I thought that maybe it would get a little chilly at night, but it's still so hot that if I touch the metal of the cot, it burns my fingers. Wow, if this city is going to grow, they're going to have to invent some sort of technology for this. Maybe they could call it "air conditioning"! Wouldn't that be nice?

Here's the bucket of water. I'll just dump it on the cot, and drench the sheets. Yes, that helps a little bit. I guess I'll just put my spectacles here, close my eyes and get a little rest. I'm tired from my travels, a good eight hours will do me good. I can feel the ocean breeze now.

Well, that didn't last very long! It's only been a few hours and everything is completely dry, and I'm so hot I can't sleep. I wonder where I could get another bucket of water? Maybe I'll try counting some sheep...

Image at the top of this post: the Vendome Hotel in 1908, 3rd Avenue and Washington, Phoenix, Arizona.

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Why people like me moved to Phoenix, Arizona


When I was in high school, I had a running joke with my best friend that we never actually went anywhere, we just left a lot of places. That is, he would leave his house in his car (which he called the Barnished Ark), go to my place, and then we would leave my house, and go to another friend's house, and so on an so on until it was time to reverse the process. And for a lot of people like me, moving to Phoenix wasn't about going there, it was about leaving someplace else.

I moved to Phoenix twice. Once when I left Minneapolis at 19, and again when I left Los Angeles at 31. And if you asked me why, I would say "to get away from the snow and cold of Minneapolis" and because "Los Angeles was too expensive". And you really haven't gotten an answer from me as to why I came to Phoenix, all you've learned is why I've left those other places.

Of course, if you've never lived anywhere except where you grew up (and most of my high school friends are still in the old neighborhood in Minneapolis) all of this really makes no sense. I knew a lot of people who were born and raised in Santa Barbara, and I really didn't have to ask them why they didn't leave. It's beautiful. If I could have afforded to stay, I probably would have. And as I write this, with summer in Phoenix coming on, I'm longing for the more cooler weather of Los Angeles. And yes, I would have stayed there if I had thought that there would have been any chance of my buying a house, but there wasn't. So I left.

Phoenix is my home now, and has been for over twenty years, and I don't ever want to leave there. I want to stay there until my old body is carried away, and even then I've donated myself to the Medical School in downtown Phoenix. Yeah, I really don't want to leave!

I like the people of Phoenix. In Los Angeles, it seemed as if only celebrities mattered. If you walked into a party, people would turn to see who you were, and if you were a nobody (and I am), they would turn away, waiting for somebody. I've never felt that in Phoenix. Yes, there are celebs in Phoenix, but it isn't as if the whole town revolves around them. Sorry, now I'm ranting.

And as much as I loved growing up in Minneapolis, at this point in my life I have to wonder about my friends who are still shoveling snow. And if you've ever shoveled snow in Minneapolis, you know why it makes me shudder! I delivered newspapers in the snow in Minneapolis, with the snow up to my little waist! So I really hated snow and cold!

My Minneapolis friends have always wondered why I left, and in turn I wondered why they stayed. And my California friends, who see the summer temperatures that I post on Facebook, consider me absolutely insane. And then I ponder what their mortgages are, and how gridlocked the traffic always is. Yes, Phoenix gets traffic, but nothing like LA.

I like Phoenix, Arizona, for so many reasons. If you're in a hurry to learn why I moved here, I'll just tell you why I left the other places. If you have time, I write a love-letter to my favorite town here in this blog just about every day. And the more I learn about Phoenix, the more I love it.

Image at the top of this post: Me in front of the Saguaro Apartments in 1980, 4205 N. 9th Street, Phoenix, Arizona. All I knew then is that I had left Minneapolis, and I had yet to learn about Phoenix.

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The joy of pictures with descriptions


I'm a visual person, so I like pictures. But I'm also interested in descriptions. I've found that it's a difficult balance when I'm sharing photos of old-time Phoenix.

Speaking for myself, at the very least I'd like to see a caption. Just a couple of sentences would be nice. And not just "here's an old photo". On the other hand, I don't want to see paragraph after paragraph of description, going into tedious detail. When I see that, I immediately go into TLDR (Too Long, Didn't Read).

Of course everyone has a different opinion on this. I know a lot of people who just want to look at pictures with absolutely no description. I suppose it would be same as looking through old photos in a thrift store, which wouldn't really interest me. I always want to know a little bit. Just a little bit. And then just a little bit more.

I collect digital images of old Phoenix and have been posting them on the web for years. And I've tried to do the balance of enough information without "TLDR". It's tricky, and I've found that my descriptions seem to be fine for most people, but of course some people don't want any description at all, and some people want way more than I do. The greatest compliment I get is someone complaining that the post was too short, and then there are people who want me to explain something "in a sentence or two".

When I see a photo like the one at the top of this post, the description is fine, but it leads me to other questions, like where Echo Canyon is (it's in Camelback Mountain), and what exactly they meant by a "Bowl" (it's similar to the Hollywood Bowl, a natural amphitheater). And then I start researching amphitheaters, and start looking at Hollywood, and then I'm off trying to figure out something else, and every answered question opens up a thousand more unanswered ones.

For me, the best way to deal with this is to write a blog, which is what you're seeing here. I try to limit each blog post to a few paragraphs, and then set aside the other questions for later. As of this writing, I've written over 900 of these, and I see no end in sight. Writing this stuff down helps me understand it better, and it also gets it in front of people, like you, who can help me.

I like pictures, and I like descriptions. Thank you for your help!

Image at the top of this post: Plans for Echo Canyon in 1927.

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Getting shot by a farmer in the 1960s in Glendale, Arizona


No, I was never shot at by a farmer. This story is based on a few stray comments that I heard someone say when I asked if he remembered the neighborhood where I live, near Sahuaro Ranch, in Glendale, Arizona, and what it was like before all of the houses were built there, starting in the 1970s, and mostly in the 1980s. It was farmland. The gentleman that I talked to was a kid who saw it, and he recalled being shot at by a farmer for trespassing. Don't worry, it was just rock salt, but from what I understand, it taught that kid a lesson!

Time-travel with me back to the 1960s in Glendale, Arizona, right around 59th Avenue and Peoria. In addition to the Sahuaro Ranch, which was a working farm up until the 1980s, there were a lot of farms around. And apparently kids like to go snoop around. I have no idea what the kids were doing, just being kids I'd say, but they were trespassing, and there was one farmer in particular who didn't like it. He loaded his shotgun with rock salt (I just looked it up, and I still really have no idea what it is) and shot at the trespassers. One of the kids (the gentleman that I had spoken to) apparently got a hit in the seat of his pants, and while it's not lethal, it hurts like crazy. He never forgot, and he never trespassed on that farmer's land, either!

The greater Phoenix area has been so transformed in a single lifetime that it's hard to imagine my suburban neighborhood being farmland, with farmers shooting at trespassers with rock salt. But it really happened, at least once, and probably many times, and it wasn't that long ago. When I walk out into my backyard I wonder if there's some rock salt down there, and maybe a little bit of someone's torn pants. Probably.

Ei-i-ei-i-oooooo!

Image at the top of this post: Flying over the Sahuaro Ranch in 1968, Glendale, Arizona. The buildings towards the bottom of the photo are Glendale Community College, which had been built in 1965. Surrounding it were farms.

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Curing your lower back problems in 1893 Phoenix, Arizona


Like most of the people I've known in a longish life, I've had lower back problems, sometimes severe. It's because of my race, of course, the human race. I have met one or two people in my life who haven't suffered any lower back pain, but I just stare at them as if they're from another planet. And I think I've tried everything - physical therapy, back braces, you name it. And as a time-traveler, I've lately been wondering what I would have done in old-time Phoenix. Come along with me.

It's 1893, and everyone is excited about the new applications of this thing called "electricity". I'm a progressive thinker, an early adopter, so I'm going to give it a try. I saw an ad in the Phoenix newspaper for the "Electric Belt"!

I know a lot of people who don't trust the new technology. In fact, most of the people I know wouldn't ever get near electricity. It's a very powerful invisible force, and I understand that it can kill. I read about a horse being killed by electricity. So I don't blame people for staying away.

But I'm too young to be walking around like this. My back hurts so much that I can hardly sleep. And I'm at risk of losing my job at the Livery Stable. And riding a horse, which used to be my favorite thing in the whole world, is just too painful for me to do anymore. The wife hasn't complained about me, but I see the worry in her eyes. I'm desperate. I'm going to write to Dr. Sanden in Denver. I need that Electro-Magnetic Suspensory!

It's only been a few days, but it's arrived! Amazing the difference having train service to Phoenix makes, which has been here since '87! My Electric Belt is here!

Ouch! How do you adjust this thing?

The image at the top of this post is from the Library of Congress https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84020558/1893-05-17/ed-1/seq-8.pdf

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The first step in historic preservation - going beyond your lifetime


If you're interested in preserving the history of your community, the first step is to go beyond your own childhood. For many people, this is pretty much impossible, and it creates the attitude of "whatever happened before my time doesn't matter". And as a historic preservationist, that makes me very sad, and I see things lost, destroyed, and thrown away, because of it.

If you don't understand what I'm saying here, I suggest that you to step away from your world view a bit, and picture the world of someone younger than you. And if you can see their point of view, you'll realize that only preserving things from your childhood passes along the same attitude to younger generations.

Now waitaminute here, I'm not talking about nostalgia. I love a sentimental journey as much as anyone. And I don't wanna turn this post into a rant, but every time someone draws a line in Phoenix history, and says "What happen 'back in the day' doesn't matter", I get sad.

If you want to preserve historic Phoenix, I suggest that you stop thinking that its history began when you born, or when you got there. Phoenix has so much more history that should be preserved before the 2000s, 1990s, 1980s, 1970s, 1960s, 1950s, 1940s, 1930s, and 1920s. In fact, the city goes back to 1870, and if you include the Hohokam people, much longer than that. If all we're preserving is "memories", that's not much, even in a city as young as Phoenix.

In this blog I explore the Phoenix that was here looooong before I got here. I time-travel back to the Victorian days, the days before air conditioning, the days before automobiles. And I don't expect everything to stay the same, nor would I want it to (I like air conditioning!). But I don't draw a line in time, and throw away everything that came "before my time". If you understand what I'm talking about here, you're with me, and in fact, probably way ahead of me. I'm learning!

Thank you for helping to preserve historic Phoenix!

Image at the top of this post: A typical canal near Phoenix, in the Salt River Valley, in the newest state, Arizona, in 1912.

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Driving an MG Midget to Phoenix, Arizona in 1977


Time-travel with me back to 1977, and let's drive an MG Midget to from Minneapolis to Phoenix.

Although in this blog I usually time-travel back to old-time Phoenix in my imagination, I actually did this IRL (In Real Life). I was 19 when I moved myself from Minneapolis to Phoenix, and I did it in an MG Midget.

If you've never seen an MG Midget, I'll see if I can describe it to you. Just imagine two motorcycles next to each other. Two very small motorcycles! Every once in a while I still see an MG B out on the Phoenix streets, but I never see Midgets anymore. The Midget was the smaller version of an MG B, which may boggle your mind if you've ever seen an MG B, which is itself a very tiny car!

An MG is a roadster, not a convertible. And the difference between those two things is that with a convertible you put the top down in nice weather, whereas with a roadster you always drive topless, except in extreme weather. I drove across the United States in the summer, which was glorious.

I brought along everything that I would need to start a new life in Arizona. As I recall, I had a small bag of golf clubs, a tennis racquet, a drawing board, and possibly some other stuff. MG Midgets weren't cars that carried a lot of stuff. And it didn't go very fast.

There was a song that was popular later called "I can't drive 55", and it really was the theme song for the Midget. The speedometer didn't work, but somewhere out in the middle of nowhere there was a sign that registered my speed as 54. It was probably Nebraska. I drove down through Omaha, and remember being amazed at how much there was of Nebraska.

I made one stop at a truck stop, where I got myself cleaned up (I think it cost fifty cents to use the showers). I slept in the car, as well as I could. I must have been more flexible at 19! I had never even heard of sunscreen, so by the time I got to Phoenix I was pretty toasted.

I got a newspaper, looked for an apartment, had time to look at two places before the sun went down, decided on the the first one I had looked at (which was near the Cheetah Club), parked the MG in its very own parking space, and looked forward to a new life in Phoenix. The air conditioner didn't work in that apartment, ever, but the place was cheap. I was very happy in Arizona, and still am. I was born in the summer of my nineteenth year, coming home to a place I'd never been before.

Image at the top of this post: My MG Midget in 1979. You're looking south towards the Papago Buttes, on Wonderview Road on Camelback Mountain.

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Why everyone who ate carrots in Phoenix in 1872 is dead now


As someone with a goofy sense of humor, and a strong sense of logic, I get a big kick out of seeing mistakes being made by people through lack of logic, and knowledge. In fact, we all do this, and my journey to learn things was inspired by my wanting to know "what the joke was?"

Of course everyone who ate carrots in Phoenix, or anywhere else, in 1872 is dead now, it was over 140 years ago, and people just don't live that long. There's no reason to be outraged at the carrots that may have been served to customers at Gardiner's Hotel. Carrots have nothing to do with it, it's just that it was 1872.

When I was a kid, a lot of this type of humor passed me by, and it irritated me. The grownups would say something and laugh and I'd have no idea what it meant. Whether I knew or not that people didn't live for over 140 years when I was eight years old I have no idea, but I'd be sure not to eat carrots! When I asked the grownups to explain it to me, the usual answer was that if it had to be explained, it wouldn't be funny. But I still wanted an explanation.

If you're like me, you discovered libraries at an early age. I was one of those kids with thick glasses and messy hair who read a lot of books. And in a long life, I've stayed that kid. And I'd like to believe that it's made me a better person, and a better teacher. I don't expect everyone to know everything, which would be very silly and very illogical. But when I was a kid I wanted to know everything, and I've never outgrown that, so I'll keep learning.

Thank you for eating carrots with me in Phoenix in 1872!

Image at the top of this post: Gardiner's Hotel in 1872, northwest corner of Washington and 3rd Street, Phoenix, Arizona. Whether people ate carrots there, I have no idea, but I know that they're all dead by now.

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Love and courtship in old-time Phoenix


It's the 1890s, we're in Phoenix, we're two fine upstanding young men, it's spring, and you know what that means. Yes, it's time to go a-courting. Love is in the air.

I met old man McGilicuty at the Golden Eagle yesterday, and asked him if I might pay my attentions to his daughter, Maybelline. He gave me a fishy eye, but he grumbled something that I took to mean that it was all right. I'll be calling tonight.

No, I don't mean making a telephone call, I mean a personal call, walking over to their place. And I was hoping that you'd come along, maybe bring that fiddle of yours. I got mine, and Maybelline plays piano. Yes, her little sister will want to sing along, you can talk to her. What? Yeah, all right, fair is fair, I'll do you a favor. I appreciate it.

How do I look? Well, you're ugly, too! In fact, if my dog was as ugly as you... Oh never mind. I'm glad you're coming along. We've been like brothers since we were kids, and I know that I can always rely on you. And besides, you make me look a little less ugly. Hand me that horse brush, will you, I want to comb my hair, look my best.

Here's their place. I declare, it's out in the middle of nowhere, two miles from town. Good thing there's a moon tonight, I wouldn't be able to see a thing. Wait, I see her in the window. No, I'm fine, I just slipped on the dirt, brushed against a cactus, that's what made me jump. Let's see, have you got your fiddle and bow? Here's mine, let's go on in.

Image at the top of the post: the Golden Eagle Livery Stable in the 1890s, Washington and 2nd Street, Phoenix, Arizona. By the way, the edge of town in those days was Van Buren, so in this imaginary story we would have been as far away from town as where the Thomas farm was, almost to the Osborn farm.

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Visiting California in 1836 with Richard Henry Dana, Jr.


I discovered the book "Two Years Before the Mast" just last year. It was recommended to me because of my interest in California history, and it's quickly become one of my favorite books of all time.

It's a long book that goes into sometimes tedious details, written in 1836, about the experiences of a young man on a ship that sails to California from Boston. The first time I read it, it was tough going. And the second time it started to make more sense. Now that I have it as an audiobook it's easier for me to sail along with the experience, and if you're interested in what California looked like before it became part of the United States, in 1849, it's wonderful. No, there are no photographs, photography hadn't been invented yet, but the descriptions will take you there.

While you read it, it's good to be familiar with the coast of California. I know a little bit about it, and when somewhere is mentioned that I don't recognize, I pause the book and Google map it. Sail along with me!

I'll skip the part about leaving Boston and sailing all of the way around South America. No Panama Canal in those days! It was pretty awful, and I hadn't thought how bitterly cold the trip would be. And then the ship sails north along the western coast of South America on its way to California.

California belonged to Mexico at that time, and Dana describes it as "the edge of the world". You really do get a sense of its being as if you were on the moon. He starts to worry that he will get stranded there for much longer than he had planned on, and is anxious to return to civilization.

Our first stop is San Diego. Then, as now, there's plenty of room for ships, safely tucked away from the ocean. Not much is going on there in 1836, other than a scattering of people (who of course spoke Spanish), and the business that brought Dana's ship there, hides. That is, the hides of cows that would be sent back to the United States to be processed into things like shoes, etc. In fact, the young Dana spends most of his time in California carrying hides. Hard work!

Carrying hides in California in 1836

The ship stays in what Dana calls the "Canal", which is the channel between the California coast and and the islands of Catalina, and the Channel Islands. The ship stops at San Pedro, which is still a harbor, and casual reference is made to "the Pueblo", which is a few miles inland. The Pueblo is of course LA, and even then Dana describes it as the largest place in California. Every once in a while he refers to it as the Pueblo de Los Angeles, but mostly it's the Pueblo. This is the part of the book that I find most fascinating, as he goes into wonderful detail about the people, and the place.

Sailing along the coast of California in 1836

He does get as far north as the San Francisco bay, and sees a bit of Yerba Buena. There really wasn't much to see there in 1836. The ship sails then visits Monterey, and you can begin to see how it's all about places along the coast where a ship can anchor for a while. In the course of the trip, Dana learns Spanish. Not much, but probably enough to be unimpressed by the name of Monterey, which simply means Mount King. Everything just seems so much more romantic in Spanish!

He really hates Santa Barbara, as it's a very difficult place to anchor, and the winds that blow makes it treacherous. There were no trees there, as there recently had been a fire. He likes San Francisco, and predicts that someday it will be become a large and important city. And he mentions Point Conception, San Juan Capistrano, and other places that I recognize.

I'm listening to it right now, and each time I discover new things, and explore new places. The two years that he spent there, 1835 and 1836, are just about the best description of California at that time. If you haven't read the book, I highly recommend it. Once you've read it a couple of times, it makes a great audiobook.

Thank you for exploring California with me!

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Being a teacher in old-time Phoenix


Although I wrote "teacher" for many years on my income taxes, I never really considered myself a real teacher. I taught graphic design and computer software at a private college (the Art Institute of Phoenix) and at Glendale Community College. I walked in, turned on a computer and projector, and then stood back while the students worked on their projects in the labs, later did some grading, and really not much more. I thought of myself as an instructor, a trainer.

To me, real teachers are K through high school. They get my respect, and I would never begin to try to place myself in their category. These are true heroes, who deserve so much more than society is willing to give them, both financially and in respect. And as a time-traveler, I wonder about what it would have been like to have been a teacher in old-time Phoenix.

The photo at the top of this post is from 1892. It shows the Phoenix Grade School (which was at 9th Street and Washington) students and their teacher, Professor Wallom. What catches my eye right away is that he is a male teacher, which was very unusual for the time, and that he is called a Professor, not just Mister. Nowadays Professor is only used for the highest-ranking teachers in a college, but it's possible that the term was used differently in those days. I don't know. I had a few students sometimes call me "Professor", which always made me smile. I really wasn't a Professor, I was a "shop teacher", and proud to be, teaching a useful profession to students who could put it to work when they graduated.

Phoenix would have been a good place to have access to teachers, because of the teacher's college in Tempe, which is now called Arizona State University. For decades it specialized in teaching teachers. If you Google the Tempe Normal School you'll find out more about it.

And if you're a serious fan of Phoenix history, take a look at the names of some of the kids in the photo up there and they'll look familiar. Whether these kids are related to those famous names I don't really know, but Phoenix was a pretty small town in 1892, so chances are good that they were. My best guess, by the way, is that Minnie (number 30) is the daughter of the teacher. Small town.

Thank you for visiting my class in old-time Phoenix! No, there won't be a test.

Become a PhD (Phoenix History Detective) with Brad today on Patreon!

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History Adventuring posts are shared there daily including "then and now" photos, billboards, aerials, videos, and super high-definition photos of historic Phoenix, Arizona. Discounts for seniors, students, teachers, and veterans.