Mon, May 20

Verde Heritage 1956: FORT VERDE MUSUEM Opened November 23

"Years of hard work and planning will bear fruit tomorrow with the formal opening of the Fort Verde Museum by the Camp Verde Improvement Association, at 1:30 p.m. The date selected for the ceremony has significance, because, on November 23, 1868, the name was changed from Camp Lincoln to Camp Verde."

"On April 5, 1879, the Army again changed the name to Fort Verde, and, for this reason, the museum will be called the Fort Verde Museum."

"The building which houses the museum is one of the 4 remaining structures of the old fort, and is located in the center of present-day Camp Verde. It is 100 feet long and 20 feet wide, and is divided into 7 rooms. The rooms originally served as offices for the adjutant, quartermaster, commissary, a school room and the post library."

"In early 1954, when the improvement association decided to take on the museum as a project, they began concentrating on the first 3 rooms. Now completed are a reception room with a model of the fort, an Apache room, depicting the life of the Apaches, past and present, and a fort room, displaying artifacts found principally on the fort grounds."

"Future plans call for a pioneer room to display relics and modes of life of early settlers. Other plans include a library with papers, books and records of the fort and the Valley. Another room will be furnished the way a room in the fort looked in 1880."

"The museum building was given to the association by Mr. and Mrs. Harold Hallett with the understanding that if it was ever discontinued as a museum, it would revert to them."

"All funds which have gone into the project have been raised by entertainments sponsored by the association. Most of the labor has been donated."

"The fort buildings were never intended as a permanent installation, and had no foundations. Time and weather caused erosion under some of the walls. Much work has been done in pouring a foundation and reinforcing weak walls."

"Workers replaced a floor in one of the rooms, walls were plastered and painted, ceilings and windows repaired, all with the idea of preserving, as far as possible and practical, the original structure."

"In front of the museum is the old parade ground. On the east of this were 5 officer's quarters, 3 one-story and 2 two-story buildings. Three of these are still standing and are now used as private residences."

"Camp Verde is the oldest town in the Verde Valley. In January, 1865, 9 men entered the Valley from Prescott, looking for a farm area. ... They found what they wanted where Clear Creek joins the Verde River. They returned to Prescott to outfit their project, and early in February they again entered the Valley, with a party of 19 men to establish the first permanent settlement."

"The first record of the Army in the Valley is a detail of 18 men under" 1st Lieutenant Antonio Abeytia, "who were sent from Fort Whipple" on August 23, 1865.

(The Verde Independent: Thursday, November 22, 1956; page 1.)

See: The Verde Independent;

"1865 SETTLEMENT: January Exploration of the Rio Verde;" January 19, 2013;

"1865 SETTLEMENT: Exploring and Building the Fort;" July 14, 2012;

"1865 SETTLEMENT: Military Detachment Arrives August 27;" August 27, 2012;

"1865 CAMP LINCOLN NAMED, December 20;" December 21, 2012;

"1866 NEW CAMP LINCOLN, January;" January 6, 2016

"1868 MILITARY POST NAMED CAMP VERDE, November 23;" November 23, 2012.