Pow Wow at Wa:k

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Before there was a Mission San Xavier del Bac, there was the village of Wa:k. The drawing below (credit to the National Park Service website) is a view of 1849 Wa:k, with rounded residential huts in the foreground and San Xavier … Continue reading

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Mission San Xavier del Bac

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Start typing “San Xavier del Bac” into a search engine and one of the first choices to come up in auto-complete is “San Xavier mummy.”  This is him. Except that he’s not a mummy. He’s made of wood and was … Continue reading

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The Civil War in the West

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“Welcome to the Battle of Valverde,” boomed the disembodied voice of a park ranger to the 200 or so people sitting on the side of a hill at Picacho Peak State Park, north of Tucson, Arizona. A Confederate sharpshooter, hiding … Continue reading

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Unexpected Consequences

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On my way to the USS Arizona Memorial, I passed the Arizona State Museum, just inside the main gates of the University of Arizona, and made a mental note to stop by on my way out. I didn’t know what … Continue reading

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For Whom the Bell Tolls (for Students at the University of Arizona, that’s who)

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US Army Captain Wilber (Bill) Bowers was in the shipyard at the Puget Sound Naval Station in Washington, in 1944, looking for “something to signal gunmen with,” according to one newspaper account. What exactly what that would have been, I … Continue reading

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My Favorite Things 2016

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I don’t seem to have strayed far from home in 2016. Too busy with the move, I suppose. But I did do a lot of activities in the DC area — a “last chance before I leave” thing.  So here’s … Continue reading

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Presidio San Augustin del Tucson

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“La forma!” shouted the commander to his troops.  At least, that’s what it sounded like to me. I don’t speak Spanish — except the few words I remember from lessons in a past century — so it’s just a guess. The troops … Continue reading

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