Map of the Navajo Nation today. Notice where Tuba City, Arizona is, and where Farmington, New Mexico is. The Tanner and Foutz families were in Tuba City from about 1877 to 1903, when they moved to the Farmington area (to the town of Kirtland). When they settled in Tuba City it was not part of the Navajo Reservation, but relocated in 1902/1903 when the reservation was expanded and the townsite was designated for an Indian school.
Tuba City, Arizona was settled by Mormons at the invitation of Tuuvi or “Tuba” as the white people called him, a Hopi leader who was living in the nearby village of Moencopi, 50 miles west of Oraibi Hopi village. Tuba had a longstanding relationship with the Latter-day Saints, and in fact had been baptized by an early missionary. Tuba City is about 80 miles northeast of Flagstaff, Arizona and 50 miles from the eastern entrance to the Grand Canyon National Park. It is within the Painted Desert and is on US Route 160 near Arizona State Route 264. It is 200 miles from Farmington, New Mexico.
It was 1875 when the Mormons accepted his offer and came to stay. There were around fifteen families there. They were a hardy and industrious bunch, considering it was so far from “civilization” and they farmed under harsh circumstances. There were underground springs there but it took much effort to build workable irrigation systems for farming.
Joseph Lehi Foutz was officially called as a missionary to the Arizona Mission and “set apart” in 1877. In LDS Church Missionary Registers, 1860-1959, There was an entry for Joseph L. Foutz on Oct 1877: 64
[abstract] Father is Jacob Foutz, mother is Margaret Mon [sic]. He was born Mar. 16, 1836 in Caldwell County, Missouri, and was baptized in 1844 by Jacob Foutz. He was in the 40th quorum of the Seventies Quorum. He was living in Richfield, Sevier, Utah at the time of his mission call to Arizona, and was set apart 8 Oct 1877 by W. Woodruff. There was no date of return recorded. (LDS Church Missionary Registers, 1860-1959, p. 9, line #652, Jos. L. Foutz entry; microfilm no. CR 301-22 #1, v. 2, bk. B, p. 1700 , LDS Church Archives, Salt Lake City, Utah.)
In 1880 the Seth B. Tanner family was enumerated on the census for Yavapai County, living at “Tanner’s Ranch”, while the Joseph L. Foutz family was enumerated right after them, living at “Mowey Abbey”. This was really Moenave or Moa Avi Springs, just west of the Tuba City present-day site:
More records to come…