Along the Santa Fe Chapter 3 page 2
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[1918] A First Look at Arizona

In the first part of January 1918, we were all set to go; the new operator was there to relieve me, and we had our suit cases all packed. Our home had been sold, our household goods were on the way, and we had really cut the bridge behind us and there was no turning back now. We boarded the train for Los Angeles and were on our way to our new home. Arriving at Los Angeles, we found we had to wait several hours for the train to Phoenix, and that we would be on the train all night.

We settled down in the waiting room for a long wait, reading and resting the two children. We slept part of the time, and finally the train was ready to leave. So we got aboard, found two seats together in the chair car, and folded one back so they would face each other. We had decided not to spend the money for a berth. We thought we could sleep in the chair for one night and save the money a berth would cost. We enjoyed the trip very much as everything was new to us, but it was a good thing it was in the middle of the winter, for there was no air conditioning at that time and the chair cars would have been unbearably hot. But it was we rather enjoyed the ride. We arrived in Phoenix at 7:00 in the next morning.

We had to transfer at Phoenix to another train for Prescott and had several hours lay over, so we got off the train to eat breakfast. There was snow on the ground, which was something unusual for Phoenix, as it very seldom ever snowed there. That was the first time any of us had been in the snow, and we enjoyed the experience. I have been in Phoenix many times since that day and have never seen snow there again. We had a nice breakfast and enjoyed the lay over with a chance of stretching our legs a little, and the children got a chance to run about in the snow.

After a couple of hours lay over, the train was ready to go to Prescott, and as Prescott was a city of over 5,000 feet elevation, we would get to some mountainous country before getting to Prescott. It was a real enjoyable trip and we really got into some snow, and when we got to Prescott we found plenty of snow on the ground, and it was very much colder. We could see that we were going to need some heavier clothing, and as we got to Prescott early in the afternoon, we purchased some new clothing that we would need when we got to Crown King.

We went up to the Superintendent's office and reported, and found out that the train didn't leave for Crown King until 8:00 the next morning. Mother had to fill out some application papers for the new job as assistant, as she had never worked for the railroad. After filling out the papers, we went uptown and got a room at the Head Hotel, which looked like a nice place to stay.

Leaving our suitcases in the hotel room, we went about town looking it over. There were quite a few Indians on the street, which was new to me, as we had never seen any live Indians before. The town had quite a number of saloons, which was also new to us, as we didn't have any in California, but we didn't go into any of them. We found a nice place to eat and went in and had a good supper, and after supper we walked about town some more, making a few purchases. Then we went back to the hotel and settled down for the night. We didn't sleep any too good that night. Everything was strange to us, and it was quite noisy. There were a number of drunken men that came in late, and they were pretty noisy. We sure kept to our room, and made sure the door was locked.


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