A Landing a Day

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Solomon, Arizona

Posted by graywacke on November 29, 2017

First timer?  In this formerly once-a-day blog (and now pretty much a once-every-four-or-five days blog), I use an app that provides a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48).  I call this “landing.”

I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town or towns I land near.  I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. 

To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is) please see “About Landing” above.  To check out some recent changes in how I do things, check out “About Landing (Revisited).”

Landing number 2340; A Landing A Day blog post number 771.

Dan:  Today’s lat/long 44o 51.893’N, 117o 5.874’W) puts me in SE Arizona:

My very local map shows that I landed close to Solomon:

Zooming back a little, we can see a whole string of communities along the Gila River:

FYI, Safford (pop 9,600) is far and away the largest town.

Speaking of the Gila River, let me jump into my watershed analysis.  Here’s my very local streams-only map, which labels a blue patch as the San Simon River (less than 3 miles west of my landing).

A quick Google search confirmed that the blue patch is indeed part of the San Simon River (we’ll get a much better look on Google Earth).  Anyway, this was my second San Simon River landing.  Just for the record, my only other landing in this watershed was landing 89, which occurred on 9/1/1999.  Wow.  Two thousand, two hundred and fifty-one landings ago!

Zooming back:

Not surprisingly, the San Simon discharges (very rarely, I suspect) into the Gila River (39th hit).  Although you’ll have to trust me on this, the Gila discharges (also very rarely, I suspect) into the Colorado River (178th hit).

OK, Dan.  It’s time to fess up.  I suspect that you have noticed nothing particularly unusual about today’s post.  Unless, that it is, you were paying close attention and noted that today’s landing number is 2340, while my most recent post (Lake Chelan) is 2378.  You also could have noted that some of the ALADus Obscurus numbers were not consistent with recent posts.  Well, here’s the story:

I was sitting at my computer with my son Jordan who was visiting over Thanksgiving.  While Jordan is an avid member of the ALAD Nation, he tends to slip behind.  But he refuses to skip any posts; he just keeps plugging away, albeit now months behind.

He mentioned that he had just read (and really enjoyed) my Placitas NM and my Halfway OR posts.  We had my landing spreadsheet open, and noticed that the next post would be Solomon AZ:

But on my A Landing A Day site, Solomon AZ was nowhere to be seen!  Trenton GA was next, right after Halfway!  As you can see on the above spreadsheet, I had duly noted Solomon as having been posted, but for reasons that will remain unknown to all (including me), I never posted it!

And get this:  I open the WordPress “Dashboard” every time I need to write, edit or post one of my entries.  And here’s what I see:

As you can see, “Solomon, Arizona  April 23, 2017” has been staring me in the face since April.  As I tell my kids, “I’m just a confused old man . . . “

 

Back to Solomon:

Let’s jump on board the Google Earth (GE) yellow push-pin, and blaze our way down into SE AZ.  Click HERE for the trip.

We’ll start right out with a dual-purpose GE Street View shot, showing both the closest “stream” (which discharges into the San Simon) as well as the landing:

And here’s what the Orange Dude (OD) sees:

See the pipe?  That carries runoff from my landing under the road!

Zooming back, we’ll go quite a ways (20 miles) south/upstream to get a look at the bone-dry San Simon:

And here’s what the OD sees (looking upstream):

I moved the OD a few hundred feet west, and had him take a look at the road as it crosses the San Simon (with no bridge):

I love the sign:  “DO NOT ENTER WHEN FLOODED.”

And now we’ll go downstream of my landing for a look at the downstream end of the San Simon:

The OD sees the San Simon, ever-so-slightly fortified by irrigation seepage:

And then I moved a little west to get a look at the Gila:

And here ‘tis:

FYI, the river disappears a couple of miles further downstream.

I checked out that whole string of towns along the Gila, and couldn’t come up with much of anything for this post.  In fact, this entire region is pretty much:

I started with Solomon, didn’t see much, and moved downstream and found even less.  By the time I had looked at all of them, I realized that my best story was where I started, in Solomon.

From Wiki:

In the early 19th century, settlers founded a town at Solomon’s location, and named it “Pueblo Viejo” (Old Pueblo) because of a previous Native American settlement, the ruins of which were still visible.

Isadore Solomon, a German Jewish immigrant, came to the town in the 1870s. He moved to Solomon with his wife and three children, the oldest of whom was three. When the Solomons came to town there were only five houses in the town.

Also in the 1870s Mormons moved to the Gila Valley region, although no Mormons moved to Solomon until 1884, when they began large scale irrigation. Solomon and Safford are the only towns in this local Gila Valley region that has not been historically dominated by Mormons.

From the 1880s to about 1910 Solomon had over 1000 residents, and reached 1,283 in 1930.  In the 2010 census, the population of Solomon was 426.

Getting back to the Solomons:  I stumbled on a piece about them in JMAW.org, which is the website for the Jewish Museum of the American West:

Isadore and Anna Solomon (both born in Poznan, Poland) first settled in Towanda, PA, where they had a livery business.  [Hmmmm.  Wiki says Isadore was German.  Well, some quick research shows that the political country of Poland didn’t exist in 1872 when Isadore and Anna were born in what is today Poland, so one could “accurately” say they were German, Polish or Prussian.]

In 1876, the Solomons sold all they possessed and headed to New Mexico with three babies. They traveled by train – to the end of the line – and then by stage to Clifton, Arizona Territory.

Anna:

“We sold everything we possessed except our three children, and started on our journey to New Mexico. We had a very hard trip even on the railroad.  Traveling with those three babies was bad enough, but when we reach La Junta, the end of the railroad in those days, and had to travel by stage, packed in like sardines, traveling day and night for six days…when we got there I was so tired out to death.”

[They headed to Pueblo Viejo because Anna’s cousin owned a mine there.]

Isadore Solomon worked for Anna’s cousin as a miner until he landed a contract to supply the mine with charcoal.  The Solomons set up the mesquite-charcoal operation (and a new home) in Pueblo Viejo along the Gila River.

As the mesquite for charcoal was used up, the land proved fertile and productive. Isaac Solomon became the principal food supplier for four army forts and had government supply contracts for 25 years.

The Solomons expanded into livestock, merchandising, freighting, and forwarding [forwarding??] as the Solomon Commercial Company.

Isadore Solomon opened the Gila Valley Bank in 1900.

Anna Solomon opened the Solomon Hotel which became the social center of town.

The Solomon’s also owned the Montezuma Flour Mill and, in 1890, they partnered with Anna’s bother, Phoebus Frudenthal  to form the Solomonville-Sheldon Stageline.

Phew.  There you have it.  These Solomons did OK!  They obviously figured out how to work with Mormons . . .

It’s time for some GE Panoramio shots.  I’ll start with this, entitled “Lonely Dead Tree,” by Andreas Geh:

And this of a cotton farm between Solomon and Safford by the GilaRiverRider:

I’ll close with this by John Eby, taken about 8 miles east of my landing:

That’ll do it . . .

KS

Greg

© 2017 A Landing A Day

 

 

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