Tattered Past

Tattered Past: My ongoing journey through genealogy, history, writing, self-exploration and art. ~~~ Rita Ackerman

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Birthday Arizona

One hundred years ago today Arizona became the 48th State. Here are some excerpts from my article on this event in the Tombstone Times.

WASHINGTON, D. C., Feb. 14. -- To the accompaniment of the whirr of three moving picture machines and the click of a battery of cameras lined along the wall of the executive office, President Taft at 10 o’clock this morning signed the proclamation admitting Arizona to the Union as the forty-eighth state, and at the same time completed the chain of states from ocean to ocean, and eliminated the last territorial form of government in continental United States except that of the District of Columbia. After he signed the duplicate which is to be forwarded to Arizona for filing in the state's archives, the President looked up smilingly, and said, "Well, there you are." (Arizona Journal-Miner, Prescott, Arizona, February 21, 1912.)

            The road to statehood was long and hard for Arizona. Ironically it was first proclaimed a Confederate Territory on Valentine's Day, 1862 by Confederate President Jefferson Davis.) United States President Abraham Lincoln made it a territory on February 24, 1863 and the 1912 delegation to Washington hoped President Taft would sign the proclamation making it a state on that esteemed President's birthday. But Taft was preparing for a trip to New York on February 12, 1912 and it wasn't until two days later, St. Valentine's Day, that Arizona became a state. For the first time Arizona pioneers would be able to vote for their own government leadership instead of territorial governors and aides being appointed by the president.

Happy Valentine's Day Friends and Family.



1 comment:

  1. Confederate supporters held seccesion conventions in La Mesilla and Tucson in late march of 1861,in reaction to the withdrawl of federal troops to the battlefields in the east ,and the upsurge of apache attacks after the notorious bascom incident of late january-early february 1861.Confederate troops from texas under John Baylor arrived in Mesilla on july 25th and,after battling and capturing a demoralized union force,declared himself the military governor of the arizona territory.Meanwhile around 200 apaches attacked and besieged the the town of Tubac in early august(the exact dates are unknown), and the residents sent a rider to tucson, and 25 militia men carrying a rebel flag and led by Granville Oury marched to the town and breifly held the apaches at bay before evacuating with the townsfolk,leaving the town to be burned and plundered by the apaches and mexican bandits from nearby sonora.Several other battles and skirmishes would occur at placito,cooke's canyon and pinos altos,where among the rebel combatants was Jack Swilling,the future founder of phoenix. Such was the chaotic though intresting birth of arizona.


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