Friday, June 21, 2024

RonnieAdventure #0624 - Holbrook & Winslow, Arizona


As an incentive for bringing a railroad to the small community of Horsehead Crossing, the railroad received large tracts of land from the federal government. To show their appreciation for the railroad, the residents of Horsehead Crossing renamed the town Holbrook, in honor of the first railroad engineer to arrive in town. 

The railroad had no uses for government land in Holbrook; so to raise money for expansions at other locations, they sold a million acres of land to Hashknife Outfit for a cattle ranch. Hashknife Outfit then leased another million acres of land from the federal government, making it one of the largest cattle ranches to ever exist. 

As settlers moved into the area, troubles started between the cowmen, sheepmen, farmers, rustlers, and outlaws. Soon range wars started and Holbrook became known as "The town too tough for women and churches." By the late 1800s, Holbrook was the only county seat in the United States that did not have a church. 

In 1902, the Hashknife Outfit went bankrupt and the land was divided into smaller parcels and sold. Once the land was sold, the range wars ended and families started moving into the area and purchased the Hashknife Outfit land. Holbrook finally became a family community with churches and schools.   

Kolohe wanted to stop at the Rainbow Rock Shop in Holbrook (population 4,858) to look for rocks and petrified wood that she could use in her classroom. The rocks and petrified wood in Holbrook were considerably cheaper than those found in shops around Petrified Forest National Park. 

When we arrived, we found a number of dinosaurs guarding the rock yard, apparently so visitors would not steal anything. Kolohe purchased a few nice rock and petrified wood samples to take back to her school.







There are a number of murals panted on the sides of buildings in Holbrook, including the World's Longest Map of  Historic Route 66.

Picture by Kolohe




Picture by Kolohe

Gillespie Park is located along Historic Route 66 and is known for the its statues and other western exhibits. 





Picture by Kolohe
For visitors that would like to stay overnight in a Wigwam and reminisce the "good old days," the Wigwam Motel is still open for business. Visitors are not required to drive a historic vehicle, but there are a number of them parked around the property. How many vehicles can you identify in the following pictures? As a bonus, how many years the vehicles were manufactured can you name?


Picture by Kolohe

















Jim Gray's Petrified Wood Company is located south of town and contains more than petrified wood. At the property entrance there are several statues - one is a cowhand ridding a wild-bucking-petrified tree. 

Inside of the "free museum" is an amazing collection of minerals, petrified wood, and fossils. "Wild Bill," a 2.9 million year old fossilized alligator, is the main attraction. Also on display is some extremely rare green petrified wood. 


Picture by Kolohe

Picture by Kolohe
Picture by Kolohe

Picture by Kolohe
Picture by Kolohe
Picture by Kolohe
Picture by Kolohe
Picture by Kolohe
Picture by Kolohe
Picture by Kolohe
Picture by Kolohe
Picture by Kolohe
The world's Largest Petrified Tree is not in Petrified Forest National Park, it is located at Geronimo Trading Post outside of Holbrook, just off Interstate 40 at Exit 280. There is also a really large Indian-decorated pot near the building entrance. 


Picture by Kolohe

Winslow (population 9,005), is located along Historic Route 66 and received international fame in 1972 when the Eagles band released their song "Take it Easy." The most famous line in the song that everyone remembers is "standin' on a corner in Winslow, Arizona." A mural on the side of a building depicts a girl in a flatbed Ford, and standing by the mural are statues of Jackson Browne and Glenn Frey. During the last week in September, Winslow holds a Standin' On The Corner street festival.  

Picture by Kolohe









Located in a park by the railroad is a Peter Toth Indian statue, along with several decorated automobiles and train cars. There were even a series of signs (patterned after the historic Burma Shave signs) that said: "The Santa Fe - The Mighty Train - Had Many Stops - This Was The Main." Winslow was one of the main stops of the Santa Fe railroad and the famous Harvey House La Posada Hotel is located by the railroad depot. 


Picture by Kolohe
Picture by Kolohe




As we left Winslow there were severe storm warnings out and travelers were advised to take shelter until the storm passed. Fortunately, we had a strong tailwind and missed most of the storm. 

A few hours later we made it home safely and reminisced about the things we encountered on this trip: aliens, dinosaurs, western history, ghost towns, historic forts, rockets and space equipment, beautiful scenery, works of art, snow, great pies, radio telescopes, National Parks, Smokey Bear, and much, much, more. Time to get ready for the next RonnieAdventure.  


Picture by Kolohe