1925: COTTONWOOD FIRE; Luna B. Willard Building.

After the fire on the west side of Main street on April 20, "G. M. Willard, the state game warden is spending several days in our midst. ... He has almost definitely settled the question of rebuilding upon the two Main street lots owned by himself and his wife. It will be remembered that ... Dr. McClintock, the chiropractor, occupied half of the" building [at 1014 North Main] "at the time of the conflagration." (Verde Copper News; Jerome; May 1, 1925; page 3, column 4.)

"POURING TWO OTHERS: Work was begun the past two days on the Luna B. Willard building to be 25 x 30 and the building by C. C. Groves and W. J. Hansohn which is also to be 25 x 30 feet. ... These buildings will be done and ready for occupation in less than 60 days according to the speed that is now being shown." (Verde Copper News; May 28, 1925; page 3, column 5.)

"PLACING JAMBS: N. O. Webb, with other carpenters, has been busily engaged the last day or two in putting in the jambs for the windows and doors of the Luna B. Willard building and the Groves-Hansohn building, both of which are nearing completion. Jess Hood, his partner, is stuck in Prescott on court duty." (Verde Copper News; June 25, 1925; page 3, column 4.)

"PLASTERING: E. E. Maxwell is busily employed in plastering the Luna B. Willard building and the Groves-Hansohn building. He has also about finished the interior of the Manini building." (Verde Copper News; July 1, 1925; page 3, column 1.)

"MATERIAL ARRIVED: The metal ceiling and spouting have arrived for the Luna B. Willard building and as soon as E. E. Maxwell finishes the job of plastering, Hood and Webb will complete the ceiling." (Verde Copper News; July 2, 1925; page 6, column 7.)

"GETTING READY: The two buildings being erected by Hood ad Webb are rapidly nearing completion and they have begun leveling off for the laying of the sidewalks and floors of the two buildings. It will probably be from one or two weeks until the business places will be ready for occupation." (Verde Copper News; July 3, 1925; page 1, column 6.)

"POURING CONCRETE: The past two days Hood and Webb have been busily engaged in pouring the concrete floors of the Luna B. Willard building and the Groves-Hansohn building and also pouring the sidewalks at the same time. These two buildings will soon be ready for occupation. In the very near future some more new buildings will be started." (Verde Copper News; July 9, 1925; page 3, column 4.)

"RAPID WORK: Contractors Hood and Webb have been making a record for themselves on the work of finishing the two buildings they have under contract. Already the metal ceiling and plastering and floor are all completed in one and the other will be done by tonight. Then all that will be required to finish are the doors and windows and the painting. They will probably begin construction on the Lysons building next week" (Verde Copper News; July 11, 1925; page 3, columns 2-3.)

"ACCEPTED BUILDING: Yesterday Mrs. Luna B. Willard formally accepted the building erected for her by contractors Hood and Webb, and the keys were turned over to her and in turn were turned over by her to Mr. Harris, who will put in a fine stock of ladies' and gentlemen's furnishings. Mr. Harris immediately engaged P. A. Walker to put in the fixtures and shelving and himself, he constituted a capable helper. The building is small but very neat indeed and a decided improvement on all of the other buildings formerly in that block prior to the fire." (Verde Copper News; July 30, 1925; page 3, column 3.)

"PUTTING ON PORCH: Mrs. Luna B. Willard is having a porch put on the front of her new building on Main street. The building is occupied by the Harris dry goods store. W. E. Edens is doing the work with his crew of mechanics. The columns supporting the porch will be of concrete and the roof of sheet iron." (Verde Copper News; September 29, 1925; page 4, column 2.)

"PORCH COMPLETE: Mrs. Luna B. Willard has her new porch on her Main street building completed and the effect is rather pleasing. The porch gives the building n individual and distinguished appearance as compared to the rest of the buildings in town and it will be a great help to avert the warm rays of a warm summer sun. The porch is supported by 3 cement columns and the top and sides at the top are framed with 2 x 4's and covered over with galvanized sheet iron." (Verde Copper News; October 25, 1925; page 3, column 5.)

"NEW GARAGE: Mrs. Luna B. Willard is completing a garage on the rear of her lot on Main street for the use of her tenant, Mr. Harris. The building is 12 by 14 feet square and the floor is of concrete and the walls are of sheet iron, galvanized. W. F. Edens has the contract for the structure. It is nearly completed." (Verde Copper News; October 10, 1925; page 4, column 3.)

In recent years the original porch was removed. According to the 1999 survey, the new canopy was raised and redesigned. The original rectangular openings for the door and windows changed to arched openings and the front is now red brick. The roof was replaced after the 1967 snow storm. Now, the original workmanship is no longer apparent, so this building has lost its historical architectural integrity.

Luna B. Willard sold this property (lot 6, block 2, Willard Addition) to Phil S. Henderlite on May 6, 1927 (Yavapai County, Book 143 of Deeds, pages 274-275).

F. J. Bequette had "Bequette Studio" at this location during the 1930's and 1940's. In 1999, this was Gleah's Jewelry. After Verde Valley Olive Oil Traders moved to the corner of Main and Pinal, the building at 1014 North Main Street has been Bee Bling Boutique (see: The Verde Independent; "Bee Bling in Old Town sells ... Bling;" July 31, 2012.)

LUNA BIRDENA "Bea" SCOTT was born in California on March 4, 1871. On August 1, 1883, she arrived in the Verde Valley with her parents, David C. and Alice (Gray) Scott, her brothers and sisters, including a married sister, and brother-in-law, E. Mahurin, and their 3 children. The family settled next to David Scott's first cousin, Godfrey Van Deren and his family. "Bea" or "Birdie" was 12 years old when she began attending the old adobe school located at the north end of what became the Cottonwood Cemetery. "Bea" wrote that during these years she and her sister, Etta, enjoyed "such a sense of freedom" as they rode their horses over the countryside, exploring the valley and visiting friends. Etta Scott married Charles D. Willard on June 11, 1890; "Bea" Scott married George MacDonald "Mac" Willard on November 27, 1895. Mac and Bea became the parents of Donald (born 08-21-1896) and Joel (born 11-27-1899).

They lived in Cottonwood, in mining camps, and in Camp Verde before moving to Phoenix where Mac was appointed game warden. After the completion of the G. M. Mac Willard Building and the Luna B. Willard Building, Joel was painting their new family home across the alley from their commercial buildings, facing Mingus (now, Cactus) when Mac died in Phoenix on April 5, 1926.

See: The Verde Independent; "1925: COTTONWOOD FIRE; G. M. Mac Willard Building;" May 29, 2013.


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