Notice to Patagonia Residents

The last phase of work to update the Town of Patagonia water system is expected to cause some inconvenience, as it requires replacement of old valves in the existing system. Although we will attempt to notify all affected residences and businesses, we strongly urge you to stock up on a small reserve of water in the event that we are unable to restore your service in a timely manner due to circumstances beyond our control. This work will continue for approximately one more month. If you experience an unexpected outage, feel free to contact us at 394-2435.

Thank you,

Brent Bowden, DM Engineering and Excavating

Nogales 1914 Time Capsule Opened at Centennial

The Pimeria Alta Historical Society is celebrating the centennial of the Nogales City Hall and Fire Department on Sunday, February 15, beginning at 2 p.m. Members of the society, the City of Nogales, and the Nogales Fire Department have planned an afternoon of entertainment, new exhibits, and refreshments in honor of the building, which is home to the historical society and its museum. The Fort Huachucha Thunder Mountain Brass Band will perform, as will the Nogales, Sonora, Drum and Bugle Corp and the Tucson Fire Pipes and Drums. The second floor of the building, home to the Nogales Volunteer Fire Department, and the quarters where volunteer firemen once slept, will be open for public tours. The city has restored the rare 1915 Seth Thomas tower clock, a prominent feature of the building. The clock’s chimes will be heard for the first time in many years as the ceremonies begin.

On January 9 a time capsule that had been placed in the museum wall when it was constructed in 1914 was removed, and on January 21 its contents were displayed at a reception in Nogales. A new time capsule will be placed in the museum wall later this year. People who join the historical society at a $100 “Centennial Sponsor” level will receive a membership that includes free admission to all events and a subscription to the society’s quarterly newsletter. In addition, the donor’s name will be engraved on a bronze plaque, to be displayed at the museum for the next 100 years, and the donor will have an opportunity to contribute a message to be included in the 2015 time capsule.

The centennial celebration is free and open to the public. It will take place at the museum, located at 136 N. Grand Ave., in Nogales. For more information call 520-287-2646

“Riders on the Orphan Train” to Be Presented at the Patagonia Library

Between 1854 and 1929 over 250,000 orphans and unwanted children were taken out of New York City and given away at train stations across America.

On February 6, at 7 p.m., the Patagonia Library will host Arizona Humanities’ multimedia program “Riders on the Orphan Train” as part of a five-city tour. The program focuses on the largest child migration in history, which took place between 1854 and 1929. More than 250,000 orphans and unwanted children were taken out of New York City and given away at train stations across America. Children were sent to every state in the continental United States; the last train went to Sulphur Springs, Texas in 1929.

This 76-year experiment in child relocation is filled with the entire spectrum of human emotion and reveals a great deal about the successes and failures of the American dream.

This “placing out” system was originally organized by Methodist minister Charles Loring Brace and the Children’s Aid Society of New York. His mission was to rid the streets and overcrowded orphanages of homeless children and provide them with an opportunity to find new homes. Many of the children were not orphans but were “surrendered” by parents too impoverished to keep them. The New York Foundling Hospital, a Catholic organization, also sent out children to be placed in Catholic homes.

In 1904 a group of 21 Irish children came to Clifton, Arizona, from the New York Foundling Hospital, and the ensuing confrontation over stewardship of these children became a state and national controversy in ethnic and class conflict and a poignant illustration of the disparities between the east coast and the developing west at the turn of the 20th century.

The one-hour program combines live music by musician Phil Lancaster and author Alison Moore, a video montage with archival photographs and interviews with survivors, and a dramatic reading by award-winning author Moore from her 2012 novel Riders on the Orphan Train. Especially featured will be a recounting of the Clifton controversy.

Phil Lancaster and Alison Moore

Although the program is about children, it is designed to engage audiences of all ages and to inform, inspire, and raise awareness about this little-known part of history. The presentation was originally developed as an outreach program for The Orphan Train Heritage Society of America, Inc., and is currently the official outreach program for the National Orphan Train Complex Museum and Research Center in Concordia, Kansas. Seventeen years of touring have provided the presenters with many true stories of Orphan Train riders and their descendants.

Cecilia Hurt Barham, of the Decatur Public Library, in Decatur, Texas, says, “The program far exceeded any expectations I may have had, as did the community’s response. . . . this was by far the most well attended program the library has ever offered. . . . everyone who attended was moved, educated and entertained. . . . your program truly made an impact on our community.”

The program is free to the public. Local relatives and acquaintances of Orphan Train riders are especially invited to attend and share their stories with the audience. For more information, contact 394-2010.