Pioneers' Cemetery Association, Inc., Phoenix, Arizona
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Biographical Profiles of Some Phoenix Pioneers

        The following biographical sketches were contributed by members of the Pioneers' Cemetery Association, Inc.  Items enclosed by quotation marks were taken from newspaper articles, obituaries and other public sources no longer under copyright protection.

Baker, Feliciana--died 16 May 1884

Feliciana Baker died at the age of 16 months and 13 days after accidentally ingesting morphine pills, a common household remedy of the day.  Her burial was the first in the Masonic section.

Barnum, Joseph Thomas--died 26 January 1909

Tom Barnum was the first elected sheriff of Maricopa County (his predecessor William Hancock was appointed to the post).  When Barnum moved his family to the Salt River Valley in 1868, his wife was one of only four Anglo women in the rough settlement.  Barnum was quick to see the Valley's potential and went into partnership with J. W. Swilling in digging irrigation ditches.  In 1871, when one candidate for sheriff shot and killed another candidate in a gunfight, Barnum became the front runner for the office.  He was elected and served from May until November, 1871, when he resigned in order to devote his full attention to his ranch.  He is said to have been a cousin of P.T. Barnum, the famous showman.

Beatty, Martha--died 9 Aug 1902

Beatty, 73, was suffering from tuberculosis when she drowned while taking a bath at Frank Shirley's tonsorial parlor (barbershop).  Too weak to get out of the tub unassisted, she may have fainted and slipped under the water unnoticed.

Bolton, J. W.--died 26 Dec 1902

Bolton, a barber by trade, eventually became one of the first black letter carriers in Phoenix.

Brown, Robert E. Lee--died 3 Oct 1902

The New York Times once described Brown, who accumulated an immense fortune in mining enterprises, as "one of the best-equipped mining engineers in the world."

Davis, Wayne--died 6 April 1914

A cowboy, Davis won the World Championship Steer Roping competition in Albuquerque, New Mexico, at the age of 17.  He later tended cattle with his brother Charles on the Agua Fria and New River.  Serving as a deputy sheriff under Carl Hayden, he later became an Arizona Ranger.  Davis ran for the office of city marshal in 1912 but was defeated. 

Dorris, Elias Marion--died 9 May 1902

E. M. Dorris, "one of the richest bona-fide residents of Phoenix", was the co-owner of Dorris-Heyman Furniture Company.  His relative J. W. Dorris, also a wealthy businessman, was the co-owner of R. W. Draper & Company.

Douglas, Wayne--died 13 June 1903
     Douglas, Ross--died 25 May 1903

These two youngsters died of scarlet fever within two weeks of each other.  They were approximately three and six years of age. 

Duhring, Christ--died 7 Oct 1910

In addition to being a carpenter, Duhring was for many years the sexton of the IOOF Cemetery. 

Duppa, Bryan Philip Darell--died 29 Jan 1892

"Lord" Darell Duppa, as he was called, was known as an eccentric man with a flair for the dramatic.  Although he wasn't really a nobleman, he came from a well-to-do family and had received a classical education in his native England.  Credited with naming both Phoenix and Tempe, Duppa was said to be "hospitable to a fault, and not afraid of man or devil--or Apache Indian".  Duppa was originally buried in the Masonic section only to be moved to Greenwood Cemetery in 1921 by the DAR because "the old cemetery was not being properly maintained".  Once Pioneer & Military Memorial Park was established, Duppa's body was returned in 1991, where he was laid to rest for the third, and hopefully final, time on November 16, 1991.

Dyer, Czar J.--died 28 Mar 1903

Czar J. Dyer served as city councilman and acting mayor of Phoenix for a time.  He was the official Phoenix draftsman who drew most of the plats of the city which are still in use today.  Dyer also drew the Bird's Eye View map of Phoenix which hangs in the dining room of the Smurthwaite House.  Prior to coming to Phoenix, Dyer was active in the mining industry in the Prescott area.  His tombstone identifies him incorrectly as C. A. Dyer.

Franklin,Benjamin Joseph--died 18 May 1898

Franklin was a U. S. congressman from Missouri and U. S. Consul to China before moving to Phoenix.  In 1896, President Grover Cleveland appointed him the twelfth territorial governor of Arizona.

Graham, Joseph Franklin--died 28 July 1898

This young ranch hand had only been on the job for three days when he was overcome by the desert heat. Upon returning to the bunkhouse, he tried to relieve his thirst by eating a slice of watermelon, but was found dead a short while later.

Graham, Tom--died 8 Feb 1892

Graham was the last man killed in the Pleasant Valley War that claimed several lives in 1880s.  The "war" was essentially a long-running feud between the Graham and Tewksbury families, both of whom were ranchers in Pleasant Valley.  It is believed that John Rhodes, a brother-in-law of Ed Tewksbury, ambushed and shot Graham as he was driving a wagon near Tempe Butte. 

Gray, Columbus H.--died 30 Aug 1905

Known as "Lummie", Gray was one of the original Phoenix area pioneers.  For two years, Mrs. Gray (Mary Adeline Norris) was the only white woman in the Valley.  Gray eventually became a member of the legislature; he helped initiate the first railroad to Phoenix (the Maricopa and Phoenix route); he was somewhat instrumental in forming Maricopa County; and he had extensive mining interests. 

Gregory, Rose--died 17 Sep 1898

Gregory, also known as Minnie Powers, was the owner of "The Powers", the saloon/lodging house in which Letitia Rice met her death.  Although Gregory denied the allegations, some suspect that her establishment was actually a house of prostitution.  She was shot by her jealous boyfriend, William Belcher, AKA "the Cockney", as she slept.

Hancock, William Augustus--died 24 Mar 1902

Having been a member of the Seventh California Infantry in 1864, Hancock later mustered into Company C of the First Arizona Volunteers at Fort McDowell and became the superintendent of the government farm at McDowell.  Hancock's house, an adobe structure, was the first permanent dwelling erected in Phoenix.  Known as the "Father of Phoenix", Hancock laid out the first Phoenix town site in 1870.  Hancock was appointed district attorney in 1871 and chosen as probate judge in 1875.  Upon the organization of Maricopa County, he was appointed the first sheriff.  As a promoter of an irrigation system for the Salt River Valley, Hancock surveyed the route of the Grand Canal, which is still in use today.  He also surveyed the fraternal cemeteries of the Pioneer & Military Memorial Park.

Hayden, Thomas A.--died 23 Dec 1940

Thomas A. Hayden was a founder of the original Pioneers’ Cemetery Association in the 1930s. He served as a civil engineer for the Salt River Valley Water Users Association and spent considerable time resurveying and mapping the cemeteries in what is now known as Pioneer & Military Memorial Park. It is his map that the Pioneers’ Cemetery Association currently uses to locate graves, pathways, etc. He did extensive research on the pioneers buried at PMMP, interviewing family members and friends. He compiled his findings into two large volumes now located at the Arizona State Archives. A great deal of historical information would have been lost without the work done by Thomas A. Hayden. He died on 23 Dec 1940, and his cremains were later placed near where the gazebo now stands on the Avenue of Flags.

Helm, Scott--died 8 Oct 1897

Dr. Helm was a well-respected physician in Arizona, the state's surgeon general, and an active member of several fraternal organizations.  He died of a head trauma sustained when his horse reared, threw him to the pavement and fell on him. 

Hickey, Walter--died 22 Dec 1899

Hickey was a Rough Rider.  He served as a private in Company F, 1st Regiment of the U. S. Territorial Volunteer Cavalry during the Spanish American War. 

Isaac, William--died 23 Mar 1900

In 1874, Isaac came to the Salt River Valley and settled on a large spread in the vicinity of the current Isaac School at 35th Avenue and McDowell Road.  He served as road overseer of District #1 in 1878 and as county surveyor from 1881 to 1882.  He assisted Captain Hancock in surveying the Grand Canal.

Korrick, Sam--died 23 Mar 1903

Originally from Grodno, Russia, Korrick was a devout Jew and excellent businessman.  He is said to have "revolutionized the mercantile business" in Phoenix and that no other man "left such a deep impression upon the mercantile life of Phoenix".

LeBarr, John--died 23 August 1879

LeBarr was a well-known citizen and businessman of Phoenix who, while visiting with friends at the saloon of Messrs. Brown and Daniels, was stabbed and killed by a troublemaker named McCloskey.  LeBarr was buried in the original cemetery at Seventh Avenue and Madison, but later reinterred at the present location. 

Lane, Marie Vaux--died 26 December 1898

Marie was the wife of a devout minister. She accompanied her husband when he accepted a call to serve in the Arizona Territory, but died of pneumonia at the age of 35.

Lizarraga, Sisto--died 21 Mar 1912

Lizarraga was "one of the most humble yet best known residents of Phoenix".  Born in Pitiquito, Sonora, he married Felipa Valencia, and the couple had several children.  For 25 years, Sisto served as "official" Phoenix grave-digger and is identified on many early death certificates as "undertaker".  In 1910, he enlisted the aid of a couple of volunteers to clean up the cemetery and straighten 52 headstones that were in danger of toppling over.  His son Ramon followed in his footsteps and also became a grave-digger. 

Loring, Amie Eliza--died 25 Nov 1885
Loring, George Edwin--died 26 Feb 1932
Loring, George Veazie--died 26 Jan 1945
Loring, Henrietta Towles, died 23 Oct 1960
Loring, Lorraine--died 17 May 1889
Loring, Margaret Ann "Aggie" Roby--died 12 Aug 1878
Loring, Samuel Veazie--died 27 Feb 1888

The Loring vault, with its walls fifteen inches thick and made primarily of river rock, was the first such structure to be built in the Pioneer & Military Memorial Park.  The first person buried in the vault was Margaret Ann "Aggie" Loring, first wife of George Loring; she died in 1878.  Samuel Veazie Loring, who died in 1888, and two of the Loring children were also buried here.  George Edwin's ashes were placed in the vault after his death in 1932, as were those of his son George Veazie in 1945 and George Veazie's wife Henrietta in 1960.   More about the Lorings...

Marlar, George W.--died 30 Nov 1891

"In trouble and miserable", Marlar "blew out his brains" while in the Commercial Hotel owned by George H. N. Luhrs.  A Mason in good standing, Marlar and his wife, the daughter of Judge Ivy Cox, had three children.  He had taken the children to be photographed the day before he committed suicide.

McCarty, John T.--died 1901

McCarty, the first Fish & Game commissioner appointed in Arizona, died while on a hunting expedition in northern Arizona. His remains were recovered three months later and returned to Phoenix for burial.

McElhaney, Samuel Calvin--died 28 Nov 1905

McElhaney, "one of the best-known ranchers in the Valley", died "indirectly of having his finger smashed while handling hogs".  His wife was the daughter of Ruben Hill, another pioneer farmer. 

Monihon, Luke--died 19 Aug 1879

Luke Monihon, brother of the popular sheriff James D. Monihon, was ambushed and killed near his home by John Keller, a disgruntled former ranch hand who had previously quarreled with him.  Originally interred in the cemetery at Seventh Avenue and Madison, Monihon's body was moved to Loosley when the first cemetery closed. 

Moss, Frank B.--died 19 Mar 1906

Moss, a wagon maker, served as the mayor and fire chief of Phoenix.  He died at the age of 53, "stricken (by heart disease) as he was ascending the city hall stairs." 

Ong Sing Yuen--died 8 Jun 1913

Ong Sing Yuen was born in China around 1862 and came to Arizona when he was about 21 years old.  He was for many years a merchant in Phoenix's Chinatown, dying in 1913 of carcinoma of the esophagus.  The coroner opined that the cancer was caused by Yuen's habit of smoking opium, although it is also possible that Yuen used opium simply to dull the pain of the malignancy.  While most early Chinese residents preferred to have their bodies cremated and returned to their ancestral villages in China, Yuen was buried in the City/Loosley Cemetery. He is believed to have been a collateral relative of Judge Thomas Tang.

Orme, Lindley H.--died 24 Sep 1900

Orme, one of the earliest residents of the Valley, moved to Arizona in 1870, having served in the Army of Northern Virginia under the Confederacy where his unit was part of White's Battalion of the Virginia Cavalry known as "The Comanches".  He was elected Maricopa County sheriff in 1880 and 1882.  In 1888, he was a member of the territorial council and was again made sheriff in 1891, serving another two terms. 

Osborn, John Preston--died 19 Jan 1900

Osborn, a native of Tennessee, was one of the best-known and most-respected pioneers in the Arizona Territory.  He, his wife and their seven children were among the earliest settlers of Prescott, Arizona, arriving in July, 1854.  Osborn built the first hotel in Prescott.  He explored Del Rio and the Verde Valley, eventually settling in the Salt River Valley, where he helped to found the town later named Phoenix.  He died at the age of 85.  Osborn Road is named after him.

Owen, Captain John W.--died 4 Nov 1877

Although a GAR post was named after Captain Owen, his role in the local political scene may be considered somewhat dubious.  As Maricopa County treasurer, he "performed the duties of his office rather loosely."  After Owen's death, "his bondsmen [searched]...where he kept the County Treasury money,"  but it was never found. 

Payne, S. O.--died 2 Nov 1903

Payne shot himself after sustaining gambling losses of about $3000.  A witness at the coroner's hearing claimed that Payne said, "I am all in" prior to his death.  He did not want relatives notified of his demise, stating "I have got along without them while I was alive, and I can get along without them when I'm dead." 

Peterson, Charles--died 28 Dec 1904

Peterson, the father of five children, was killed by a streetcar while riding his bicycle at the corner of Second Avenue and Washington. 

Phy, Josiah--died 21 August 1877

Little Josiah Phy was the son of Deputy Sheriff Josephus Phy and his wife, Christiana Rachel Cavaness. Upon his death at the age of six weeks, the infant was buried in the city's first cemetery in what is today downtown Phoenix.  His marker was the first marble monument in that cemetery.  The stone arrived in May of 1878 and a newspaper article described it as being "of California marble, of the finest grain, nicely polished and grained."  Infant Phy's body--and his marker--were later moved to their present location. 

Plumridge, Robert--died 17 June 1906

Plumridge was a member of the U. S. Cavalry's famous "California Column" that helped protect Arizona during the Civil War.  He was an ardent "sporting man" who loved all things in which there was a chance.  He was an authority on card games, races and boxing.  He was employed by the Capitol Saloon in Phoenix where he acted as a bookmaker and pool shark. 

Proctor, Clarence--died 27 Mar 1900

Proctor, a Buffalo Soldier, was a sergeant in Troop L of the Tenth U. S. Cavalry during the Spanish American War. 

Quackenbush, Kittie--died 25 Aug 1901

Kittie was married to Charles Quackenbush, a blind pianist and piano-tuner. She died of an apoplexy (probably an aneurysm) one hot August afternoon in the parlor of her comfortable home on Monroe Street.

Randal, Amos G.--died 1 Dec 1897

Randal, of the undertaking firm of Randal & Davis, died in Porter Cemetery after the burial of G. A. Kirtley.  According to newspaper reports, "Randal pitched forward and fell on his face."  He first came to Arizona with the U. S. Cavalry's "California Column".

Raymond, Millard--died 11 Jan 1899

Raymond was a Rough Rider of Troop F during the Spanish American War.  His original tombstone was a wooden marker that incorrectly identified him as Raymond Miller.  The wooden marker was later replaced by a government-issued veteran's marker with the name corrected. 

Rice, Letitia "Tessie"--died 19 May 1893

Rice, also known as Tessie Murray, also known as Mrs. Wright, was burned to death in "The Powers", a saloon/lodging house owned by Minnie Powers.   Companions testified that 17-year-old Tessie was intoxicated when she knocked over a kerosene lamp, igniting her clothing.  A coroner's jury ruled the death "accidental". 

Rosson Children--died 25 Feb 1883 and 7 Jan 1896

These are the children of Dr. and Mrs. Roland Lee Rosson.  The Rossons are best known for building the Eastlake/Queen Anne-style house in what is now Heritage Square in downtown Phoenix.   More on the Rossons....

Schwartz, Edward--died 1 Mar 1904

Edward Schwartz's long military career began with the Civil War.  After the war's end, he became active in the newly-formed Grand Army of the Republic (GAR).  in 1893, Governor Hughes appointed Schwartz adjutant general of the 1st Arizona Infantry (territorial militia, later the National Guard).  Upon his death, he was buried in Porter Cemetery, Section B 37 F, with full military honors and the "first employment of the Krag-Jorgensen rifle salute by the National Guard of Arizona".   His grave has both a military marker and a private headstone.

Smith, Cassie--died 28 Sep 1872

Cassie was the daughter of William M. and Fanny Smith, who opened the first store in Phoenix in 1871.  She is described as the first white person to "die of natural causes" within the townsite limits.  Originally buried in the cemetery at Seventh Avenue and Madison, her body was subsequently moved to its present location. 

Staley, Jennie--died 14 Dec 1894

Jennie Staley traveled out West to live with her aunt and uncle in a Denver mansion before accompanying them to a ranch near Cave Creek.  A lifelong spinster, she died at the age of 42 of pneumonia.

Torigoe, I. (or S?)--died 14 Feb 1902

Torigoe, a Japanese cook at a nearby ranch, was shot by a fellow employee and countryman in what is believed to have been an unfortunate accident.  The two men "appeared to be the best of friends." 

Tovrea, Freddie--died 17 Jul 1898

Freddie, the 10-year-old son of E. A. Tovrea, died of appendicitis.  Mr. Tovrea was the owner of the "Tovrea Castle", now part of the Phoenix City Parks Department. 

Waltz, Jacob--died 25 Oct 1891

Known as the "Old Dutchman", Waltz departed this life a poor farmer at the age of 81 following a bout with pneumonia.  Although he "died with a blessing for Mrs. J. E. Thomas, his caretaker, on his lips", it is not known whether he ever divulged to her the exact location of the gold mine he had allegedly discovered in the Superstition Mountains.  Scores of gold-seekers from around the world have tried unsuccessfully to find it ever since.  After Waltz's original headstone was stolen from the cemetery, a new one was purchased with donations from concerned citizens. 
Ward, Josiah L.--died 23 Dec 1881

Ward, born in Chenango County, New York, was one of the four original locators of the famous Gunsight Mine.  He was in Phoenix for only a few weeks before he succumbed to consumption. 

Wilson, Leona Wooldridge--died 16 Apr 1899

Mrs. Wilson was the first person buried in the Wooldridge family's "specially-constructed" vault.  Also buried in the vault was her father Julian F. Wooldridge, co-owner of the Wilson & Wooldridge shoe store, and three other family members.  Their bodies were later moved to Greenwood Cemetery, and the vault is now a maintenance shed. 

Woolsey, King--died 30 Jun 1879

Woolsey came to Arizona as a mule driver for Fort Yuma around 1860.  He eventually owned at least three large ranches in the Arizona Territory.  Although he is best known for his campaigns against the Apache Indians, he and two other men also established one of the first flour mills in the Salt River Valley.  He held various government positions in the territorial legislature and served as director of several water companies aimed at more equitable distribution of water privileges.  Always an innovator, Woolsey opened the first skating rink in Phoenix at the Woolsey and Wentworth Hall in June, 1878.  Woolsey died at the age of 47 of heart disease and was one of those originally interred in the old cemetery but later removed to the current location.


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