Papago Park and the Case for Dumpster-Diving

ProposedMap

A colorized map from the Proposed Plan for Papago Park, submitted by the City of Phoenix Planning Commission in 1956

Papago Park is a local treasure here in the Valley, and one that has many layers of history. Boasting many interesting geological formations, the park has served as reservation to Pima and Maricopa tribes in the 19th century, the Papago-Saguaro National Monument (designatedin 1914, but revoked in 1930), German Prisoner-of-War camp during World War II, a VA hospital, and an Army Reserve, It is home to former Governor George W.P. Hunt’s tomb, and once featured an amusement park called Legend City. We tend to think that Papago Park has some pretty important history – and apparently, so did Charles Eatherly when he dredged a box out of the trash forty years ago when he started his career at Arizona State Parks.

Proposed

Proposed Plan for Papago Park, submitted by the City of Phoenix Planning Commission in 1956.


Last week, in the latest installment of treasures coming out of Arizona State Parks/State Historic Preservation Office, we were able to take in the small box of records related to the sale of Papago Park to the City of Phoenix in 1959. Records include maps, leases, correspondence, right-of-way information, etc. Welcome to the State Archives, Papago Park records. And thanks to Mr. Eatherly for recognizing these gems and saving them for all of us to enjoy! 

Deed

Conditional Certificate of Purchase of Papago Park by City of Phoenix from the Arizona State Parks Board, 1959

Letter

Letter from longtime Yuma Legislator Harold Giss to Charles Reitz of the State Parks Board regarding the sale of Papago Park to the City of Phoenix

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