Cherokee Connection Chapter 3 page 28
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Life in Arizona

Grandmother Annie and Dora with Alice and Don on our mule, Shagpat. Annie with her grandkids on Shagpat

Alice said grandma Anna came to visit us shortly after we moved to Crown King. We went on a lot of picnics almost every Sunday. We had a mule which was named Shagpat. Don and Alice got to ride on Shagpat and didn't have to walk. They liked that. Grandma was a fun loving person and once tried to ride Shagpat. She was a good sport and loved it, but fell and broke her shoulder. There was a nurse in Crown King who bandaged grandma's shoulder until mom could take her to Prescott on the train (an all day trip) to see a doctor and get the bone set.

There is much more to tell about our mother and father, Alice and Don and I growing up in small railroad towns and cities in Arizona in the 1920s and 30s, but that is another story in itself. My dad, Charles, wrote part of this story before he died in his book, "Along the way on the Santa Fe".

It is not too difficult for me visualize what life was like in the Indian Territory in 1774 when my grandmother was born, or even when my mother was born in 1893. If Annie's father worked for the railroad, her life would not have been that much different than ours in Arizona, along the Santa Fe Railroad. She seemed to have moved around like we did, and the railroad houses (or house cars) we lived in may not have been much better than the ones she grew up in.

Grandmother Annie with Don and Alice Annie with her grandkids
We also lived in houses without electricity, hot water or inside toilets, only out houses. We heated the house with coal stoves and cooked the food on wood stoves. The big difference between railroad towns in 1940 and back in 1870 would have been that we could listen to a radio at night, go into town by train or car to buy food or clothing and go to a movie, etc., whenever we wanted.

The one-room schoolhouse I attended in the eight grade at Drake, Arizona in 1933 may not have been much different than the ones in 1890, but the subjects taught and my knowledge of the world were very different.


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