White Mountain Historical Society
On site buildings
A seasonal tourist location was Diamond Rock Lodge (located along the East Fork of Black River) included a large lodge building and several small cabins. Cabins were rented for he summer allowing visitors to fish, hike and enjoy the cool of the White Mountains. One of the cabins was relocated to Round Valley.
This log home was constructed in 1887. Mud chinking is visible along with other adobe blocks which were used to enclose the gable ends of the building. In 1921 a tin siding was added (giving appearance of stonework). The home includes many items on display in the living room and kitchen
The Saffell Home Today
The Saffell Home in it's original location
This “wagonette” was used by Clay Hunter who was a local trapper/hunter. His services were greatly appreciated by cattlemen and others as he trapped both bear and lions. He left unique markings (on rocks) where he made a major kill. He lived in this structure for 60 years.
In the 1930’s (during the depression President Roosevelt term he initiated the WPA (Work Programs Administration). It provided the opportunity for young (mostly men) were provided with training an learned skills which resulted in many projects. They build trails, improved water catchments and trails. They also constructed most of the first sidewalks here in our Round Valley.
This building served as the home for the Butler family. The building is scheduled for restoration to include mud floor, logs as cross-beams to allow the upstairs to again have a loft serving as a sleeping area for children. The logs have a very interesting cuts to “lock” them in place. Different than the Lincoln-log method.
This 1913 cabin is on loan from the Forest Service. Originally located at Pat Knoll it served as a seasonal office. Rangers were busy working with livestock owners who grazed their cattle for several months of the year. They were also involved in the early logging industry which and fire prevention as well as suppression.
In 1875 Mr. Springer and Mr. Becker opened stores in Round Valley, then known as Valle Redondo. This building contains many interesting donated items. Serving somewhat as our “attic”. The building was donated to the Society by Andy and Daisy Woods. Located on the south side of the road when going up the hill to the Airport, it was relocated (in full size) to the Historical Park.
Arizona Weekly Star (11/15/1887)
Within the last two or three months, several men of money and means, principally
stockmen, have passed through this section with a view of settling down on a good range, but,
notwithstanding they have been perfectly well pleased with this country, around the neighborhood of
Springerville, and even were anxious to settle, they could not do so on account of those desperadoes. How
long this state of things is to be permitted "rests" with the Governor and the civil authorities in Prescott.
Round Valley was a sea of gramma grass on which stolen horses and cattle could fatten
after their brands had been “doctored”. The White Mountains contained countless hiding places. A. F.
Banta, an early day legislator, once said “I am no angel and have seen most of the tough town’s of the
West, but Springerville is the worst of them all.” After seeing “Apache Free Silver” Banta became a
searcher of treasure. His political activities and other things he did were to finance his never-ending
quest. One of Banta’s best friends even married an Apache maiden in the hopes of locating this “hill for
silver.” This same search was made in many other parts of this county, both on the Navajo and Apache
In the 1880’s scarlet fever broke out in Nutrioso and wiped out all of the small children. There is a row of
unmarked graves which is a reminder of this deadly tragedy.
At the same time there was a fort in Lower
Nutrioso and one on Lookout Hill by Upper Nutrioso. In the late 80’s and early 90’s Nutrioso boasted a
brick kiln, a saw mill and a tannery.
In 1869 Dionicio, Elalio, and Juan Baca along with Gabriel Silva came to Round
Valley with Tony Long, Marion Clark, and Johnny McCullough with supplies from Pueblo, CO, for what
is now Fort Apache.
Telephone Line Connected
St. Johns Herald - May 2, 1907
It is a matter of interest and gratification to the people of Apache County that the Arizona Electric Telephone Co. has completed its line between Holbrook and Eagarville - distance of 140 miles, connecting the intermediate points of Springerville, St. Johns, Concho, and several in Navajo. This line was projected about one year ago and was completed last Sunday, April 28. It has been a long felt need among the businessmen and others and now that the line is in operation and giving satisfactory service it is up to the public to supply business. Those connected with the enterprise, and especially the manager F.W. Nelson, deserve great credit in pushing it to a successful termination.
* The first telephone in Springerville was installed at Becker's store. The sherriff had an office there and holding cells.