Apache County Historical Society Museum
Thanks to the efforts of St. Johns’ lifetime residents Dewey and Esther Farr, and many others, the Apache County Historical Society Museum opened its’ doors more than 45 years ago. It holds a comprehensive selection of historical relics and is well worth return visits by residents, visitors, tourist, and their families or organizations.
The museum has a surprisingly large breadth of artifacts depicting life in Apache County as the Apache, Hopi, Navajo and Zuni tribes, and Hispanic and Mormon settlers clashed and meshed throughout the history of our communities. These displays include arrowheads, firearms, written histories, diaries, photographs, tools, musical instruments, household items, and dioramas representing the daily lives of our diverse cultures.
Petrified and fossilized teeth and bones, a nearly intact prehistoric camel leg, found by Darin Nielsen at Richville (south of Lyman Lake) and an intact set of Colombian mammoth tusks thought to be more than 40,000 years old discovered by Terry Greer in a sand and gravel pit near St. Johns are some of the items representative of earlier times.
Our outdoor exhibits include wagons, farm machinery, and two cabins. Built by local residents in 1882, the log cabin was moved to the museum grounds and furnished with items representing the time period of construction. The adobe cabin was built on the museum grounds to illustrate a structure that is typical of such dwellings used by early Hispanic settlers.
A more chilling outside display is the old steel jail. Especially popular with children, who have been known to close one another inside, the small cells and stark surrounding are more likely to cause claustrophobia in adults. Originally part of the Yuma Territorial Prison, it was moved to Apache County and used at the jail up until the 1980s, before being moved to the Museum grounds.
The museum conference room is available for a small fee, $25.00, and is often used for luncheons, meetings, and presentations by local organizations and those from outside our community who need to meet with area residents. Please call 928.337.4737 or use the “Contact Us” form on our website to inquire further.
The Apache County Historical Society Museum is a non-profit organization. All contributions are appreciated and 100% tax deductible.
Be sure and stop by for a visit – you’ll be glad you did!
First Museum Board - 1974: L-R: Dewey Farr, Bessie Brawley, Joy Waite, Ernie Wilbur, Merle Platt, Ted Raban, Leonard Isaacson, Eddie Pena.
Esther and Dewey Farr