Posted in Arizona pioneers, Biographical, U.S. Serial Set

Early Tuba City, Arizona: Records of the Tanners and Foutzes, part 4. Enlargement of the reservation is proposed.

This is more from the U.S. Serial Set, or Senate papers, regarding the enlargement of the Navajo Reservation in 1900, which included the Tuba City area. The settlers there, including the Tanners and Foutzes were paid for the improvements they had made.

This begins with a letter from Pres. William McKinley, transmitting reports he had received from the Secretary of the Interior, E.A. Hitchcock and Col. James McLaughlin, U.S. Indian Agent, to the Committee on Indian Affairs. Hitchcock is explaining the need to enlarge the Navajo Reservation for the sake of water and grasslands needed for Navajo herds and crops, and McLaughlin is reporting on his observations during a 22-day visit to the Tuba City area.

The document also includes a “schedule of improvements” for David Brinkerhoff’s property. Brinkerhoff was the Bishop of the local LDS ward/branch. Brinkerhoff had the largest property, and later in the week you will see the schedule of improvements for the Tanner and Foutz families posted. Their industry and perserverance is remarkable, considering the arid conditions and remote locality.

U.S. Senate, editor, Senate Documents Vol. 8, 56th Congress 1st Session, 1899-1900 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government, n.d.), 8: Doc. 68, pp. 1-4. This volume was found at the J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah.

(The thumbnails below are the same as the larger photos beneath them. I couldn’t figure out how to remove them!)


Posted in American State Papers, Archives and Libraries, Biographical, Friday Finds, U of U Marriott Library

Friday Finds: U.S. Serial Set, and Early Tuba City, Arizona: Records of the Tanners and Foutzes part 3. The settlers sign an agreement.

This blog features a bit of what I found in the U.S. Serial Set about the Tanners and Foutzes in Tuba City, Arizona.

Congressional records are a rich source of valuable information for settlers in the Western States. That’s because there were so many issues involving land, Native Americans, settlers, and the Federal Government. Much of it ended up in the Congressional Record, found in the U.S. Serial Set, which is available in libraries which are federal repositories. University of Utah Marriott Library is one of these, and I was able to find an account of the federal government’s buyout of the Tuba City settlers. These two pages give the names of the settlers, the amount they were paid, and the agreement they signed 30 May 1899:

Senate Documents, v. 8, 56th Congress, 1st session, 1899-1900, #3850

This published version of the Congressional Record after 1817 is called the Serial Set; prior to 1817 the record is called the American State Papers. There are various indexes you can utilize to find things in them:

Stay tuned for more items from the Serial Set…

Posted in Arizona pioneers, Biographical

Seth Benjamin Tanner bio on Wikipedia

Here is a link to a bio for Seth Benjamin Tanner on Wikipedia.  There is some good information I had not seen before, and links to information on Tanner Trail in the Grand Canyon.

This is another great link with information on the Grand Canyon, with details about Tanner Trail and Seth Tanner.  “This site is part of a multi-media educational project,“Nature, Culture, and History at the Grand Canyon”.


Seth Benjamin Tanner:  Photo from Grand Canyon Museum Collection, Catalog # GRCA 7060A, posted on the NCHGC site above



The marker at Cameron Bridge, near the spot formerly known as Tanner’s Crossing:  First posted on

Posted in Arizona pioneers, Biographical, Four Corners, Maps

Early Tuba City, Arizona: Records of the Tanners and Foutzes, part 2

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 [133], 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…

Posted in Archives and Libraries, Arizona pioneers, Biographical, Four Corners, Friday Finds, Navajo Reservation, Newspapers

Early Tuba City, Arizona: Records of the Tanner and Foutzes, part 1

My grandmother, Annie Marie Tanner, was born in Tuba City, Arizona on 18 Aug 1901.  I knew she grew up in Kirtland, San Juan County, New Mexico and wondered exactly when and why the family left Arizona.  Tuba City lies within the Navajo Reservation in the northeast corner of Arizona, while Kirtland is just outside the Navajo reservation in the northwest corner of New Mexico.  Using newspaper articles, Congressional records, and correspondence within federal agencies I pieced together the fascinating story of the early Tuba City settlement and will share some of the records in coming weeks , while also highlighting the archives and libraries where the records were found. Briefly, the settlers who had arrived in the 1870s were bought out by the federal government when the Navajo Reservation was expanded to include their property. There is a lot more to the story, though, as the records will reveal.

Here is a newspaper article, “Will Leave Their Homes”,  (November 15, 1902 Coconino Sun, page one, column three) summing up the situation in Tuba City in 1902.  It is blurry because it is a photo of a microfilm image taken at the Arizona State Archives in Phoenix, Arizona.

Note the mention of S.B. Tanner.  That is Seth Benjamin Tanner, father of Joseph Baldwin Tanner and  grandfather of Annie Marie Tanner.  Watch in the coming weeks for records from this interesting period of time in Tuba City, and  the Tanner and Foutz families.