Verde Heritage By Glenda Farley, Cottonwood, AZ Local historian Glenda Farley guides us on a journey back in time to discover fascinating moments that make up our Verde heritage and history.
Thursday, April 3, 2014
"Lower Verde, April 3. --- [Special Correspondence.] --- March 31st, 1892, will long be remembered for the pleasant time the people had at the closing of Miss Ida Williams school in the new school district, No. 25, on Lower Verde. Some two weeks since, word was given out that the parents of the school children were going to give them a treat in the way of an old-fashioned basket picnic."
"About 11 o'clock the people commenced to gather, and about noon the closing exercises commenced, which consisted of speaking, recitations, declamations, dialogues and singing. After the closing exercises of the children were over, the benches and boxes which were used for furniture were arranged and a long table made, which was laden with good things to please the palate. The teacher and the ladies who were to wait upon the youngsters at the table announced that this was an affair especially for the children, and that the old folks must wait until the children were through, when all were invited to partake."
"After all present had enjoyed the feast prepared, the young folks engaged in games and plays of various kinds, to the great delight of the older people who witnessed the sports. As there were several who came from the more distant portions of the valley, and arrived too late to witness the exercises of the school, Miss Williams had the children repeat a portion of their exercises, consisting of dialogue, etc., for their special benefit."
"The people are proud of their new district, and feel grateful to the probate judge and supervisors for giving them the new district in order to school their children, without taking the risk of crossing the river, which is often very dangerous. The school has done good work, there having been a total absence of friction and complaints. The teacher and parents have worked together in a manner that is truly commendable."
"To make special mention of the children is hard to do, as all performed their parts most creditably, and showed that the teacher had done her part well and taken great interest in her school in teaching our coming men and women. Miss Williams was raised in Yavapai county, Arizona, and is a graduate of the Prescott high school, and aside from her many good social qualities and a general recommendation, she came to us with a diploma from that institution with a county certificate as her authority to teach. This was our first school in the new district, and her first experience as a teacher, both of which have been a a complete success. Our daily average attendance for the term was over twelve. On Miss Williams taking her farewell of the children and parents, all expressed the hope she might come back again as our teacher for next term."
"Miss Williams goes from here to Lynx creek to teach a three months' term, and from my experience in school matters, I feel safe in saying to the trustees of that school district that they have made no mistake in their selection of a teacher."
"It has been raining for the past twenty-four hours; the ground is thoroughly soaked and the valley is one solid coat of gramma grass and alfalfa."
"The health of the valley is generally good."
"The flumes of the great Verde ditch are completed, and there will be plenty of water for irrigating purposes this year for the settlements on the lower Verde. The ditch, when properly graded in a few places where the gound has sunk, will carry about 6,000 inches of water and cover about that number of acres of land. The ditch is 14 miles long, and 12 feet wide on the bottom, and has a grade of 38 to 50 inches to the mile."
"Very truly, VERDE."
(Arizona Weekly Journal-Miner; Prescott; April 6, 1892; page 2.)