Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Encanto District

Street signs marking the historic Encanto District, October 2010 (Image by Debra Groves)

1606 W. Thomas Rd, former home of the Ragsdale family, October 2010 (Image by Debra Groves)

Lincoln Ragsdale, circa 1940s (Source:

Eleanor Ragsdale, circa 1950s (Source:

Bounded by 7th and 19th avenues to the East and West, and McDowell and Osborne Roads to the South and North.  This area is easily accessed by both the Interstates 10 and 17.

The Encanto area is a historical residential district located in north Phoenix with homes dating back to the early 1930’s. After World War II, Phoenix, like much of the United States, was experiencing tremendous residential growth, financed largely through government subsidies and G.I. bill incentives (Doti, 1989). Also, like much of the United States, Phoenix was also highly segregated and lending practices were highly racialized (Whitaker, 2000). The Encanto District was exceptionally so because from its inception it was designed to cater to a white, affluent population, to the extent that minorities were prohibited from purchasing homes in the area in order to maintain the status-quo (Whitaker, 2005). This was maintained through codes adopted by such organizations as the Phoenix Real Estate Board, which enforced penalties for Realtors that did not comply with the ‘whites only’ policy (Whitaker, 2005). Practices such as ‘red lining’, or racial steering by real estate agencies created both exclusive white communities, as well as disproportionately impoverished ones of color (Whitaker, 2005).
 In 1953, however, the first black family, the Ragsdales, became a powerful force for desegregation in the city of Phoenix (Whitaker, 2005). They were members of not only of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the Phoenix Urban League, they were also founding members of the Greater Phoenix Council for Civic Unity (Whitaker, 2005). Being active in the struggle for equal rights, Eleanor Ragsdale, who was employed in real estate, saw an opportunity to advance the integration of blacks into traditionally exclusively white neighborhoods, such as the Encanto-Palmcroft District (Whitaker, 2005).  Eleanor, who was ‘a very fair skinned African American woman with a manner of speaking that betrayed her Eastern heritage,’ was able to view a home located at 1606 W. Thomas Rd, on the northern edge of the District without raising racial suspicions (Whitaker, 2005). In what can be characterized as an ‘under-the-table dealing,’ the Ragsdale family entered the community with the help of a white friend who purchased a home and then transferred the title while the transaction was still in escrow (Whitaker, 2005). The family faced blatant and outright discrimination and acts of intimidation, but paved the way for the eventual desegregation of the neighborhood (Whitaker, 2005).
 Exemplified by the ingenuity and bravery of the Ragsdales, highly motivated and determined individuals continued to organize and advocate for integration racial equality throughout the Civil Rights Movement (Whitaker, 2005). As a direct result of these efforts, Arizona passed a law which ‘banned discrimination in housing, employment, voting, and public accommodations’ in 1965 (Whitaker, 2003). Today, the Encanto District is still predominantly white, but concrete gains in the struggle for integration is reflected in the approximately 25% of the population in the area that identifies as non-white, according to the 2000 Census data.
 - Debra Groves, Carshenia Butler, and Edell Stinett
Doti, L. P., and L. Schwikart. 1989. Fincancing the postwar housing boon in Phoenix and Los Angeles, 1945-1960. Pacific Historical Review. 58: 173-194.
Konig, M. 1982. Phoenix in the 1950’s: Urban growth in the ‘Sunbelt’. Arizona and the West. 24: 19-38.
Whitaker, M. C. 2000. The rise of black Phoenix: African-American migration, settlement and community development in Maricopa County, Arizona 1868-1930. Journal of Negro History. 85: 197-209.
Whitaker, M. C. 2003. ‘Creative conflict’: Lincoln and Eleanor Ragsdale, collaboration, and community activism in Phoenix, 1953-1965. The Western Historical Quarterly. 34: 165-190.
Whitaker, M. C. 2005. ‘Shooting down racism’: Lincoln and Eleanor Ragsdale and residential desegragation in Phoenix, 1947-1953. Journal of the West. 44: 34-43.
U.S. Census Bureau. 2010. “Fact Sheet: Zip Code Tabulation Area 85015.” (|86000US85015&_street=&_county=&_cityTown=&_state=&_zip=85015&_lang=en&_sse=on&ActiveGeoDiv=&_useEV=&pctxt=fph&pgsl=860&_submenuId=factsheet_1&ds_name=null&_ci_nbr=null&qr_name=null&reg=null%3Anull&_keyword=&_industry=&show_2003_tab=&redirect=Y)

South Mountain Flower Growers

South Mountain Flower Growers 2010 (Photo by Edell Stinnett)

South Mountain Flower Growers, 2010 (Photo by Edell Stinnett)
3801 E. Baseline Road Phoenix Az. Directions: 2 miles west of AZ Mills & I-10
The agricultural possibilities of land at the basin of Phoenix’s South Mountain had eluded white farmers, whose attempts for various crops in the seemingly barren soil had failed miserably. The desert basin silt was intemperate to attempts for today’s generic crops of alfalfa, cotton, and citrus, due to a lack of adequate water.  In 1913, the completion of the Highland and Western Canals provided the South Mountain area with water supplied from the Salt River, and agricultural development in Phoenix flourished as did canaigre (tannin producer for tanning) and the cattle and ostrich industries.
In 1928, Japanese immigrant, Kajiuro Kishiyama began to farm vegetables, canaigre roots and sugar beets, on land he leased in Phoenix.  Though the recent passage of the 1921 Arizona Alien Land Law prohibited Japanese Americans and Japanese immigrants, or “Orientals,” from owning land in Phoenix, Mr. Kishiyama had been successful growing flowers before he and his family was relocated to one of two internment camps during World War II. In 1931 a second family, the Nakagawas, and the Kishiyamas both returned to the Phoenix South Mountain area to pursue their previous successes with flowers and future agricultural successes with lettuce and other vegetables. Some contribute agricultural knowledge and skill for the canal irrigation systems of Asia for the Japanese immigrants’ agricultural accomplishments for produce like lettuce for success where white farmer had failed. This and other racial animosities toward the Japanese as “forever foreign,” contributed to an inhospitable environment in Phoenix for Japanese people.
The events of World War II during which Japanese Americans in Arizona and elsewhere on the West coast were interred temporarily as possible enemies of the nation, found that when released, many Japanese American families discovered their personal possessions and properties had been appropriated and redistributed, by law, to white American citizens.  The repeal of the Arizona Alien Land Law in 1936, allowed Mr. Kishiyama, Mr. Nakagawa, to purchase land they had previously been denied title to, and by 1946 Japanese American families in Phoenix had created a successful local and commercial nationwide floral enterprise. Eventually, numerous Japanese family farms enjoined the Kishiyama and Nakagawa family farms, forming what was once known as the two lane “Baseline Corridor,” (1) where fresh flowers purchases from local patrons and merchants daily, blossomed into a cultural and ecological niche for Japanese Americans in Phoenix. (2) Today Baseline Road is a six lane tree-lined main thoroughfare of South Phoenix, adorned with a flowering median and residential condominiums, apartments, and small commercial business on one side and across the street are vacant spaces, gated communities, and the Phoenix Baseline Flower Growers flower shop, still dwarfed by the proximity of South Mountain and parallel the Western Canal. 
 - Edell Stinnett, Carshenia Butler, and Debra Groves
1. ProQuest. Copyright 2005 - Arizona Republic - All Rights Reserved. Angela Cara Pancrazio. Arizona Republic. Phoenix, Ariz.: Jan 27, 2005. pg. B.2
2. City of Phoenix Asian American Historic Property Survey. Murray, V. & Solliday, S.  Arizona Historical Research.

Arizona State Capitol

Sign outside the capitol, 2010 (photo by Katy Tipton)

Protesters against SB1070 outside the capitol, 2010 (photo by Katy Tipton)

Reporter from Channel 33 Noticias reporting outside the capitol during a protest against SB1070, 2010 (photo by Katy Tipton)

1400 W. Washington St, Phoenix
          The original capitol building was created in an effort to establish that Arizona was ready for statehood and no longer a territory. There was a design contest held for the construction of the building that was won by James Riely Gordon, an architect of courthouses throughout the United States. His design was based off a failed proposal of the Mississippi State Capitol. However, this proposal failed once again due to shortages in funding. The project needed to be scaled down. Gordon’s ideas were then scrapped and put on the back burner.
             In 1891, territorial residents of Arizona saw a vision of statehood. They wrote a constitution and proceeded to deliver it to Washington DC. The congressmen in Washington DC denied Arizona’s request of statehood. This is most likely due to the persona that embodied the territory; it was better known for gunfights in the OK Corral and Geronimo and the US capitol didn’t see this territory yet fit to become a part of their union.
           Construction on the capitol building broke ground in 1898 and was officially opened in 1901. It is made out of materials which are indigenous to Arizona, including malapai, granite, and copper dome. The original size of the building was approximately 40,000 square feet, but in 1918 and 1938 expansions were added on to the west wing of the building, increasing the size to about 123,000 square feet.
           Early in Arizona history the economy relied off of “the five C’s”: copper, cotton, cattle, citrus, and climate (tourism). These “five C’s” were crucial to Arizona and were therefore incorporated into the state seal. The mosaic seal was to be created in Ohio and shipped to Arizona to place on the main floor of the capitol building. However, there was a mistake made in the production and now “cattle” is notoriously missing from the seal on the floor of the building today.
            In 1910 the territory of Arizona had changed quite a bit. Some friends in Washington DC aided in leading the way to statehood for this wild, western territory. President Howard Taft signed the Enabling Act which allowed the territory to write a state constitution and even allocated $100,000 to do so. On Oct 10, 1910, 52 men from 13 counties gathered for the first time  in the capitol to discuss and foresee needs and laws that would soon become the 48th state of the United States of America. It became time for delegates to sign the new constitution to be sent to voters for election in February 1911. However one delegate refused to sign because they wanted to exclude the judge-recall measure from the constitution. It was territorial governor Terry Sloan who refused to sign and President Taft also refused to approve such a constitution that included the recall of judges. Arizona went back and forth revising the state constitution and it was finally signed and approved on Feb 14, 1912.
            The capitol building was home to the Legislature until 1960. Arizona at this time dreamt of turning the building into a museum dedicated to Arizona’s history. In 1981, after some restorations, the building reopened as a museum. Ten years and three million dollars later, renovations to the rooms were begun in efforts to restore the original design.  However due to budget shortages, some of the rooms on the third floor are still left incomplete. On January 14, 2010 the building was reported to have been sold to private investors, however legislature continues to meet here.
            The capitol itself is now utilized exclusively as a museum and brings in about 60,000 visitors annually, 30,000 of those people being school children. The children tour the museum and learn about Arizona history and the road to statehood. Outside the capital there are often many protests. Most recently the hot topic in Arizona has been the debate over the new immigration bill, SB1070. This bill requires a reasonable attempt to determine the immigration status of a person during a legitimate contact by an official of the state, city, county, own or political subdivision if reasonable suspicion exists that they are an alien here unlawfully. Beginning in spring of 2010, over ten thousand people showed up to protest and hold vigils outside the capitol day after day. Protestors marched with signs around the capitol, gave speeches and personal testimonies on the stages, Mexican food vendors showed up, capoeira dancers displayed their talents with a circle of people around, artists sold posters and clothing, etc. People of all backgrounds and ethnicities attended many of these protests and marches. News reporters, radio stations, and even local celebrities showed up to participate in these events. These people attended to share their voice on the controversial bill, which they succeeded at.
            The SB1070 protests is just one example of a protest occurring at the capitol. Typically, if there is a politically controversial issue in Arizona, people will congregate at the capitol to display their feelings on the topic. People feel this is the most effective and noticeable place to protest. The capitol is symbolic of the center of democracy in Arizona, so naturally people are drawn to it. The capitol has a long history and represents years of political struggle and the fight for democracy and statehood. It’s a very powerful symbol of the state. 
- Katy Tipton and Jennifer Sabula

George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center

Statue of George Washington Carver, 2010 (photo by Edell Stinnett)

African Dolls and Statue, 2010 (photo by Edell Stinnett)

415 E Grant St Phoenix Arizona: Interstate 10 South to 7th Street to Grant and East to Grant and 4th Streets
The George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center is an historical edifice dedicated to the preservation of African American tradition, heritage, and pride, and is located in downtown Phoenix. Centered among the buildings many photos, artifacts, and displays of African American history are John Waddell’s life- sized renditions of the four young girls who died in the Ku Klux Klan bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in 1963 Birmingham Alabama. Shadowless, they stand in the buildings Sculpture Garden. Prior to its current use, the George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center building once housed the educated minds of African American Phoenicians, as the Phoenix Colored School from 1913 to 1926, Phoenix Union Colored High school from 1926 to 1943, and from 1943 to 1954 as the George Washington Carver High School.  

When I arrived on Black Friday, I expected that the museum would be closed for the holidays, but surprisingly I was granted access and a tour of the premises by the caretaker, Ronnie Hill. Though the museum is currently closed for renovations until 2011, some exhibits were still on site. A wringer washing machine, washtubs and washboards to predate washing machines, dolls, paintings, photographs, and a handmade quilt in the foyer were just a few of artifacts being refurbished on site. Mr. Hill says he and his parents came to live in Phoenix, “like most black folks did,” when the car they were travelling in broke down, in 1932.  

The exclusionary practice of segregation in Phoenix public schools became law in March of 1909, when Arizona’s Territorial Legislature overrode the veto of Governor Joseph Kibbey. In 1910 Kibbey, who was also an accomplished attorney, represented African American Samuel E. Bayless in a lawsuit to oppose now having to send his children to a segregated school across the railroad tracks and some distance from his home. In the ruling, the Maricopa County Superior Court acknowledged that black children “. . . were ‘not afforded educational facilities substantially equal to the educational facilities given and afforded’ to white children in the district.” (1) However, in upholding the statute for segregation, the Arizona Supreme Court citedPlessy v. Ferguson and comparable precedent rulings. Racial segregation in Phoenix continued well into the Civil rights era of the 1960’s, when the notorious squalid environmental conditions in South Phoenix were decidedly racial. Many of the black, Latino, and Asian residents of Phoenix lived in shacks in close proximity to employment and industrializing pollutants of the railroads, factories, and plants, while white residents lived in the suburbs of North Phoenix. (2)
Phoenix’s first colored school was held in a less than adequate class room, a lean-to lean located at Van Buren and 1st streets in 1913. Eventually staff and students relocated to an actual building on Jefferson and 9th streets, and in 1926 the school relocated to 4th and Grant streets, and was renamed Phoenix Union Colored High School. In 1943, the name was changed to honor world renowned African American scientist, botanist, educator, and inventor, George Washington Carver. After the landmark Supreme Court ruling mandating school desegregation in the 1954 case of Brown v. Board of Education, integration led to the discontinuation of the site as a school, and today this building is on the National Register of Historic Places and is home to the George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center. (3)
When questioned about the isolated location of the museum from the Phoenix Historical and Cultural District proper, Mr. Hill said the month of February, Black History Month, is very popular with local schools, and during the remainder of the year, cultural events and  public and private bookings, donations, and volunteers help to finance and maintain museum operations. Today, the wealth of knowledge stored at the Phoenix George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center continues to educate young minds for hope of continued diversity for racial and culturally equality. 
- Edell Stinett, Carshenia Butler, and Debra Groves
1. The Promise of Brown v Board of Education A Monograph. Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard.  March 2005.
2. The Geography of Despair: Environmental Racism and the Making of South Phoenix, Arizona.  USA. Bolin B. & Grineski, S. & Collins, T.

3. Desegregating the Valley of the Sun - Phillips v. Phoenix Union High School. Mathew C. Whitaker.

Tempe Town Lake

Tempe Town Lake, 2010 (photo by Jose Fernandez)

South of Loop 202, between Priest and McClintock, Tempe

             Today, Tempe Town Lake is one of Tempe’s  greatest points of interest. The lake features a beautiful bridge, which is beautifully lit by lanterns at night. There are also many grassy areas and even a dirt path dedicated to walk, run, or bike. In addition to its scenery , Tempe Town Lake is home to numerous events and attractions. However, very few people know the history behind Tempe Town Lake.

            The Tempe Town Lake is an artificial lake that derived from the Rio Salado, also known as the Salt River. In the 1800s, the Salt River had a tempestuous flow of water. During the late 1800s, Charles Hayden built a mill near the current location of Tempe Town Lake. Hayden was an entrepreneur whose contributions were key in the foundation of Tempe. Due to Hayden’s contributions, the Tempe Town Lake area became instrumental to many business and trade interactions. During the 1960s, ASU became involved in the development of this area. A group of students from the College of Architecture developed a blueprint known as the Rio Salado Project, which was “a series of locks and channels creating an inland seaport in the desert.” This proposition suggested a linear green belt along the river bed and also included parks and recreational areas. In 1997, Tempe accepted the proposition for the construction of Tempe Town Lake. The city partnered with the Central Arizona Project, which, according to the CAP website, is “a 336-mile lo ng system of aqueducts, tunnels, pumping plants and pipelines and is the largest single resource of renewable water supplies in the state of Arizona,” to fill the lake. There is significant controversy over how Tempe acquired the water. Tempe bought water from the Colorado River system. The water purchase brought speculation due to the fact that Tempe paid an astonishingly low rate for it. Apparently, Tempe purchased it for a significantly lower price than other municipalities, such as California or Nevada, would have payed for it. The Rio Salado Project marketing coordinator said, “It’s not that we ‘stole’ any water.” Tempe’s justification for buying the water at such a low price was that if they had not bought it, then California or Nevada would have bought it. They argued that the water “would be up at a casino in Las Vegas.” Several Tempe citizens, along with a group of Native Americans, were irritated by the “special rate” that Tempe bought the water for. In addition to the low purchase rate, local citizens were angered because they believed the water could be used in more efficient ways. Arizona, being predominantly desert, has had a history of drought. Opponents argued that the water could be better used be used in ways that were more environmentally friendly than using it for recreational purposes. Tempe’s acquisition of the water is an example of how a governing agency will use its power over a group of people who have little voice in such matters.

- Jose Fernandez

Works Cited

Honker, Andrew M. (2002, November 1). River sometimes runs through it: A history of Salt River             flooding and Phoenix. Retrieved November 15, 2010, from ProQuest Dissertations.

Ingley, Kathleen.  (1999, June 27). Tempe Defends Filling Town Lake. Arizona Republic,p. A.            1. Retrieved November 9, 2010, from Arizona Republic.
            http://proquest­.umi­.com­.ezproxy1­.lib­.asu­.edu/pqdweb­?did=1847584991­            &sid=1&Fmt=3&clientId=5557­&RQT=309­&VName=PQD

No Drought for Tempe Town Lake. (2002, May 23). Retrieved November 15, 2010, from Arizona             Republic.

El Rey Cafe

Archive Photo of El Rey Café from article titled “Migration, Marginalization, and Community Development: 1900-1939” from the Hispanic Historic Property Survey from the Phoenix Government website.  El Rey Café was the site for protests during the 1960s for its practice of
Current site of El Rey Café at 922 South Central Avenue; the site is currently an empty lot near Saint Anthony Catholic Church.  The El Rey Café was a site where many civil rights protests for the exclusion of African Americans from this restaurant by Mexican American owners.  November 28, 2010 (Images taken by Carshenia Butler).

922 South Central Avenue, Phoenix, 85004
The El Rey Café was a Mexican restaurant in central Phoenix that is historically significant because of the dynamic racial structure in Arizona and the broader Southwest of the United States in general.  Before and during the Civil Rights Movement in Arizona, this Mexican American owned restaurant served white Americans and Mexican Americans, but refused to serve African Americans.  Civil Rights activists in Arizona staged a series of protests at the café for its discriminatory practices during the 1960s.  The site is important because of how the Mexican American experience in the Southwest both mirrored and was paradoxical to the African American experience in the Southwest.  Because after the annexation of the Southwest from Mexico in the Mexican American War in 1848, the Mexican citizens in the territory of annexation were given the legal distinction of Mexican American citizens, and the racial category of effectually legally white according to the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo.
Because of this historical legal distinction, Mexican Americans were afforded certain limited privileges that the legal definition of whiteness included.  So Mexican Americans and white Americans dined at the El Rey Café together, but excluded African Americans.  The legal distinction of whiteness bestowed upon the Mexican American citizens caused strife and animosity between the Mexican American citizens, African American citizens, and other minorities in the Southwest.  However, the legal category of whiteness for Mexican Americans was limited and they were still seen as inferior to the white citizens in Arizona and the entire Southwest.  Consequently, the Mexican American citizens in Phoenix were legally white, but actually another minority group in Phoenix and share much of the living space of African Americans and other minority groups in East and South Phoenix.  So fortunately, Mexican Americans were aware of their status as an inferior minority to white citizens and would serve African American patrons in the El Rey Café when white patrons were not around.  The owners of this and other Mexican American owned restaurants were cordial to African Americans and would serve them as they would any other patron when white patrons were not around.  The reason that the owners of this restaurant, and others like it would not serve African Americans when white patrons were around is because white patrons would threaten to not dine in their restaurants if the served African Americans.  This became an issue of economics rather than discrimination against African Americans on the part of the Mexican Americans who were practically forced to discriminate against African Americans. 
The reality is that in Phoenix many Mexican American and African American were active in the Civil Rights Movement in Arizona and worked together much of the time.  Because Mexican Americans, African Americans, and other minorities were prohibited from going into places of public accommodations and the Mexican Americans were segregated from white Americans in Arizona schools, housing, public buildings, etc.  And the El Rey Café is on the South Central side of Phoenix where African and Mexican Americans historically shared living spaces.  This site incorporates white-privilege, differential racism, and activism during the Civil Rights Movement and it shows the racial hierarchy of Arizona and much of the Southwest historically.  Today the site where the El Rey Café has been abandoned and is now an empty lot which is much the same way the white American citizens of Arizona and the United States have abandoned their beliefs that Mexican Americans are almost white and therefore privileges should be extended to them.  Today in Arizona there is an all-out assault on Mexican and Mexican American identity in Arizona and the nation.  
- Carshenia Butler, Debra Groves, and Edell Stinett
Goddard, T. (2005, march). The Promise of Brown v. Board of Education. Retrieved November 28, 2010 from Arizona State Government:
Gomez, L. E. (2007). Manifest Destinies: The Making of the Mexican American Race. New York and London: New York University Press.
Heard v. Davis, 77497 (Maricopa County Superior Court may 5, 1954).
Judicial Branch of Arizona Maricopa County. (n.d.). Law Library. Retrieved October 30, 2010 from The Judicial Branch of Arizona:
Phillips v. Phoenix Union High School and Junior College District, 72909 (Maricopa County Superior Court February 9, 1953).
Whitaker, M. C. (2003). Creative Conflict: Lincoln and Eleanor Ragsdale, Collaboration, and Community Activism in Phoenix, 1953-1965. The Western Historical Quarterly , 165-190.
Whitaker, M. (2005). Race Work: The Rise of the Civil Rights in the Urban West. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press.


Church in Guadalupe, 2008 (Photo by Marycarmen Chavez)
Cemetery in Guadalupe, 2010 (Photo by Katy Tipton)

Over the years, Guadalupe has been home to many Latino families including several Mexican immigrant workers. When the Yaqui people fled to Arizona, Anglos here were sympathetic to their plight as refugees and Yaquis were able to find a home in the Salt River Valley's agricultural economy. Catholic and Presbyterian missionaries also supported the community and helped secure land for a legal Town site in 1914.
            They are a tribe of 30,000 people living in Sonora, Mexico and now Arizona. At the turn of the century, thousands of Yaquis migrated to Arizona to escape oppression under the government of Porfino Diaz.
Guadalupe is a Native American and Hispanic community of about 5,500 residents between Phoenix and Tempe at the base of South Mountain. The town proudly maintains a strong cultural and ethnic identity. It is named after the Virgin of Guadalupe, the patron saint of Mexico. Guadalupe was founded by Yaqui Indians around the turn of the century. The town of Guadalupe was incorporated in 1975 and is approximately one square mile in area. It will remain this size since it is surrounded by man-made boundaries; Interstate 10 and the city of Phoenix on the west; Baseline Road and the city of Tempe on the North; the city of Tempe on the South; and by the Salt River Project's Highline Canal on the East.
           The town of Guadalupe has a council-manager form of government.
Under the council–manager form of government, the elected governing body such as a city council is responsible for the legislation such as establishing policies and voting. The people in the legislative body are voted into office through public elections to oversee operations and implement policies. The position of mayor is highly ceremonial.
              Something that is very special to Mexican Americans living in Guadalupe is the Yaqui ceremonial festival. This is a seven-week festival that ends on Easter Sunday. Many of the Mexican Americans tried to hold onto their traditions while now accepting the Roman Catholic beliefs and traditions. The Yaquis are descendents of the original tribe that previously lived in Mexico.
            As of the census of 2000, there were 5228 people residing in Guadalupe. There were 1110 households and 961 families residing. 17.46% of people living in Guadalupe were white, 1.07% black or African American, 44.19% Native American, 13% Asian, 2.1$ Pacific Islander, 31.22% from other races, and 72.34% of the population reported to be Hispanic or Latino. The median income for a household was $30,089.
            In July 2008 in Guadalupe, Arizona, 5 individuals and Somos America sued Sherriff Joe Arpaio, the Maricopa county Sherriff’s office (MCSO) and Maricopa county, claiming that they or their members were unlawfully stopped and mistreated by the police due to being or appearing Latino. The country asked the US district court to dismiss the case but the ruling went forward.
            The ACLU as well as other organizations charged that the policies of Arpaio and the county are discriminatory and violated the 4th and 14th amendments, title VI of the CRA of 1964 and the AZ constitution. Arpaio has led a series of crime sweeps in areas with high populations of Latinos.

- Katy Tipton and Jennifer Sabula

Works cited{0EEC810A-13EB-43EB-A33E-8DB587C9CDA4}{DFA4AFAB-0649-4BCC-9A7C-611FA5F8BDD0}

Orme Dam

Confluence of Salt and Verde rivers as seen from Phon D. Sutton recreation area, October 2010 (Image by Debra Groves )

Ft. McDowell Yavapai Indian reservation  2010 advertisement for ‘Orme Dam Victory Days’ celebration, October 2010 (Image by Debra Groves)

Protest of Orme Dam construction, circa 1970s (Source:

Confluence of the Salt and Verde rivers. Directions: North Power Rd. to Bush Hwy. Turn left into Phon D. Sutton recreation area.
The Orme Dam site was proposed to be located at, or just below the confluence of the Salt and Verde rivers which is between the Beeline Highway (87) and the Bush Highway. The site can be accessed by taking North Power road till it becomes the Bush Highway, and turning left into the Phon D. Sutton recreation area, which is a part of the Tonto National Forest. Today, both rivers are free-flowing at this location, thanks primarily to the efforts of tribal community leaders of the Ft. McDowell Yavapai Indian reservation.
The Yavapai tribe historically had been nomadic, following seasonal variations in rain patterns in a territory that stretched from the Colorado to the Verde Rivers to the west and east, and the Gila and Salt Rivers in the South to the current day town of Ashfork in the north (Coffeen, 1972). The earliest contact with whites probably occurred during the 16th and 17th century when Spanish explorers moved through the area, but interaction intensified during the American Civil war when outposts, such as Camp McDowell, were established in Arizona (Coffeen, 1972). When precious metals were discovered in the state, a wave of migration created tensions in the area which were exacerbated by negative connotations associated with the ‘rebellious’ Apache tribe (Coffeen, 1972). Little, if any, distinction was made between different tribes, resulting in the forced migration of all native peoples onto reservations designated by the American government, and by 1903 portions of the old civil war camp located along the Verde River was given to the approximately 500 Yavapai Indians in the area (Coffeen, 1972). At this time, the Tribe began to take up farming, and it was in the early 1900’s that their water rights to the partial flow of the Verde was established (Coffeen 1972).
When the Central Arizona Project and its associated development initiatives was approved in 1968, the construction of the Orme Dam was included to create a reservoir for the growing Phoenix-Metro area, as well as to provide flood control (Espeland, 2001). However, had the dam been built, approximately two-thirds of the Fort McDowell Indian reservation would have been flooded, including homes, farmland, and burial grounds (Coffeen, 1972). This would have had a devastating effect on the community, forcing many to be displaced and to loose their livlihoods. While compensation for the land lost to the reservoir was included in the Dam’s plan, there was almost no effort to include the tribe in the planning of the project, nor did the Bureau of Reclamation (the agency of the government behind the project) make sustained effort to communicate with the tribe (Coffeen 1972). This created an environment of ‘distrust and suspicion’ around the project, and fueled the momentum to protest the dam’s creation (Coffeen, 1972).
The conflict over the Orme Dam was imbedded in the opposing interest of proponents who believed the dam was necessary for the growth and development of Arizona’s economy, and those who were worried about the social and ecological impacts the project would have, both for the people of the area, as well as native flora and fauna (Espeland, 2001). Not only would the proposed reservoir inundate the ancestral lands of the Yavapai, it would also destroy ecologically important riparian habitat that would affect many species, including the bald eagle (Espeland, 2001).
The Orme Dam project was finally abandoned in 1981, after over 10 years of struggle and legal battles (Espeland, 2001; Espeland 2002). This was done in part by creating alliances with environmental groups, and using the Environmental Impact Statement required by the National Environmental Policy Act to highlight the detrimental impact the project would have on many endangered species in the area. (Espeland, 2002). Perhaps most effectively, the Tribe utilized their long history of interaction with the American government, highlighting the many broken promises and injustices that had occurred time and time again (Espeland, 2002). The Tribe also engaged in a successful press relations campaign that involved marches, interviews, and dialogue that highlighted their cultural connection with the land, and that they were not willing to treat it as a commodity (Espeland, 2002).
The Yavapai’s defeat of Orme Dam has lent the tribe great political clout, which they have capitalized on to organize around other issues, such as defending the practice of Indian gaming, which has been a source of great revenue and economic stability for the tribal community (Espeland, 2002). To commemorate this historic victory, the Yavapai have a week of celebration, including a powwow, every year in early November (Espeland, 2001).
- Debra Groves, Edell Stinett, and Carshenia Butler
Coffeen, W. R. 1972. The effects of the Central Arizona Project on the Fort McDowell Indian Community. Ethnohistory. 19: 345-377.
Espeland, W. N. 2001. Bureaucrats and Indians in a contemporary colonial encounter. Law and Social Inquiry. 26: 403-433.
Espeland, W. N. 2002. Lessons learned from a small Native American community. Public Administration and Development. 22: 377-388.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel

1) Our Lady of Mount Carmel, November 2010 (photo by Jennifer Sabula)  
2) Photo of Reverend Henry Granjon inside Our Lady of Mount Carmel, November 2010 (Jennifer Sabula)
Rural Road between Tempe and Apache, Tempe

In the late 1800’s Arizona provided a passageway for ancient Aztecs to trade with other tribes that were located in northern Arizona. When many of the Mexican people migrated up north from Mexico some of their first stops were Tucson and Tempe for them to settle. Many of the first people in Tempe called themselves Tempenenos, and these individuals all came to Tempe with the same idea in mind. They migrated up to Tempe for survival, growth, and improvement. Our Lady of Mount Carmel church has been in Tempe AZ since 1881 and was one of the first buildings to be built in Tempe. Its name in Spanish is Nuestra Senora del Carmen.  Mount Carmel’s original location was where Arizona State’s football stadium is currently located today and this was known as Tempe Butte. Our Lady of Mount Carmel was the first Catholic Church to be built in Tempe. In 1897 Our Lady of Mount Carmel was announced as the first public building in what was known as San Pablo. The small adobe building that was first known as Mount Carmel was torn down and replaced in the early 1900’s and was rebuilt right near Arizona State’s campus on the corner of University and College Ave. In 1950 it was later moved to its current location, which is located on Rural Rd. between Broadway and Apache. Had it not been for the Anglo American and Mexican-American communities coming together for this project this church may have not been constructed in that short of a time period. Skilled Mexican settlers that were currently living in San Pueblo built Mount Carmel and also helped build Tempe’s Canal and a Floor Mill. Many of the fields that the farmers cultivated are where ASU’s current sports complexes are today. The Mexican settlers worked with Charles Trumbull-Hayden to build both of these.
            During the late 1800’s Mexican Americans were one of the only groups of people living in Arizona at this time, and it was reported on the Census that 85% of Tempe was Hispanic. William Hudson Kirkland found it very important for the Mexicans living in Tempe to create their own community and tried very hard to help them with that. Many Mexican Americans found the catholic religion to be extremely important and this is why they felt having a church was extremely important. To this day a large portion of the parish is Mexican Americans. 
            The church’s architecture is very important to its significance as well as its history. It is an example of Territorial Victorian Romanesque Revival architecture. The church’s structure was actually constructed 2 miles away from the church where the bricks were fired, and the clay was brought in from Fort McDowell. A brick cutter from Tucson and a brick layer from Phoenix were two of the individuals that were the specialists on this project. 
- Jennifer Sabula and Katy Tipton

Works Cited
Vega, Santos. Mexicans in Tempe. Charleston, NC: Arcadia Publishing, 2009. 7-50. Print.
Mark, Jay. "Tempe & San Pablo: A Tale of Two Towns." Tempe Republic June 9, 2007, 19Print.
"Our Lady of Mount Carmel Roman Catholic Church." Information for Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Sound Mission, 2010. Web. 28 Nov 2010. <>.

Maricopa Superior Court

 Image from the Clerk of the Superior Court of Maricopa County website

Maricopa County Courthouse, 2010 (photo by Carshenia Butler)
125 West Washington, Phoenix, 85003

Maricopa County, which encompasses metropolitan Phoenix, Arizona, is not a county where people were known to have progressive attitudes toward race relation especially in recent years with the ratcheted anti-immigrant rhetoric coming from the political leaders in Arizona.  However, Maricopa County, and more specifically Maricopa County Superior Court, was a leader in progressive civil rights during the 1950’s thanks to the Lincoln and Eleanor Ragsdale of Phoenix.  The Ragsdales were Civil Rights activists in Phoenix and worked with a number of multi-racial coalitions to eradicate segregation and bring about equality for African Americans and other minorities in Arizona.  The Ragsdales, along with Hazel B. Daniels (the first African American to pass the Arizona State Bar), and Herbert B. Finn were key players in the little known case that ended school segregation in Arizona and set precedent for a future well known Brown v. Board of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954). 
Phillips v. Phoenix Union High Schools and Junior College District, No. 72909 Opinion and Order, (Ariz. Super. Ct., Feb. 9, 1953), was a case brought before Maricopa Superior Court beginning with a complaint filed on July 2, 1952 on behalf of Robert B. Phillips, Jr., Tolly Williams, and David Clark, Jr. who were students at Carver High School which was the school for children of color in this segregated school district.  The representing attorneys for the African American boys were Hazel Daniels, Herbert Finn, and Stewart Udall with the support of the Ragsdales along with their fellow coalition of civil rights activists.  And on February 9, 1953, Judge Fred C. Struckmeyer, Jr. ruled in favor of the African American youth and ordered that schools in Phoenix be integrated “with all deliberate speed.”  Judge Struckmeyer further acknowledged that though states had the right to legislate school segregation “a half of a century of intolerance is enough” and “democracy rejects any theory of second-class citizenship.  There are no second-class citizens in Arizona.”  The district appealed the decision but decided on July 7, 1953 to discontinue the policy of segregation and the Supreme Court of Arizona ruled the appeal moot Phillips v. Phoenix Union, No. 5570, Certified Copy of Order Dismissing Appeal as Moot (Ariz. Nov. 10, 1953). 
Because segregation was still legal under United States law, another school segregation case was decided in Maricopa Superior Court by Judge Charles C. Bernstein the first Jewish Judge in Arizona history.  The case was Heard v. Davis, No. 77497 Memorandum Opinion (Ariz. Super. Ct., May 5, 1954) and was brought in regards to the policy of segregation in the Wilson School District.  Judge Bernstein ruled in favor of the plaintiffs and found that “statutes that give school districts the authority to segregate students solely based on color are unlawful” and “educational opportunities, advantages and facilities afforded and available to the white children of elementary age were not equally afforded to African American children of elementary age.”  This decision followed precedent of Plessey v. Ferguson, 163 U.S. 537 (1896), that established the separate but equal doctrine that segregation thrived on.  And although Heard v. Davis was decided at the same time the United States Supreme Court was preparing to decide Brown v. Board, Phillip v. Phoenix Union was decided 14 month prior to the Brown decision and was even used as precedent by Thurgood Marshall and co-counsel during the Brown proceedings.  Unfortunately, because Arizona was not the site of much of the racial violence as was the situation in the Southern part of the United States, these groundbreaking rulings that happened in the Maricopa County Superior Court are not well known.  However, they are portraits in Arizona history and this court house was a very historically significant place in the Civil Right Movement whether it has been acknowledged or not.  
- Carshenia Butler, Debra Groves, and Edell Stinett 
Goddard, T. (2005, march). The Promise of Brown v. Board of Education. Retrieved November 28, 2010 from Arizona State Government:
Heard v. Davis, 77497 (Maricopa County Superior Court may 5, 1954).
Judicial Branch of Arizona Maricopa County. (n.d.). Law Library. Retrieved October 30, 2010 from The Judicial Branch of Arizona:
Phillips v. Phoenix Union High School and Junior College District, 72909 (Maricopa County Superior Court February 9, 1953).
Whitaker, M. (2005). Race Work: The Rise of the Civil Rights in the Urban West. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press.