Taking the library outdoors

The Greenlee County Library System received a Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) Grant in May in the amount of $18,445. This project is supported by the Arizona State Library, Archives & Public Records, a division of the Secretary of State, with federal funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. The funds will be used at the Clifton, Duncan and Blue libraries.

The focus of this grant will be to get Greenlee public libraries involved with outdoor activities within the county. The libraries plan to promote geocaching, rock hounding, stargazing, bird watching, and StoryWalks© with these funds.

The Library System hopes to accomplish three major goals with this grant:Continue reading

Flooding in Clifton in 1983 and 1903

By Gary Dillard

More than 3 inches had fallen at Clifton on Oct. 1 and 2, 1983, according to a USGS report on the flood.
As the water came down the San Francisco River channel at almost 90,000 cubic feet per second on Oct. 1 — it had risen to this record level from 60,000 in a little more than four hours — it gave townsfolk little time to respond to the flood whistle.

The flooding which was overtopping the flood channel soon began receding, but on Oct. 2, the level rose again, this time to more than 90,000 cubic feet per second.

The flood reached 9 feet in depth, some 4 feet higher than the maximum in prior floods, the report said.
The river left a sea of mud behind, according to a newspaper report, with as much as 7 feet of mud in some homes.
The flooding destroyed 90 homes and 41 businesses, but there was no loss of life. The author of the USGS report attributed this to flood-warning sirens that were installed after the flood of 1972 and the efforts of local police to evacuate residents.Continue reading

Distracted driving interest grows

To date there are only 9 municipalities and 2 counties in Arizona that have established a local distracted driving ordinance. Clifton is one of those towns. Each one is to be applauded.

Further, we are hopeful that by bringing together law enforcement and elected officials from Cochise, Graham and Greenlee Counties that we can begin the process of making Southeastern Arizona a safe driving haven.

First, this message is being sent to you as an invitation for August 16 and second as a request for your feedback.
After speaking with Danny Sharp, Chief of Oro Valley PD, and Brendan Lyons, Executive Director- LOOK! Save A Life the following Distracted Driving / Save-A-life Road Show schedule has been tentatively proposed road stops:Continue reading

1983 strike changed everything

Your memories of the strike

Photos of 1983 strike

By Gary Dillard

It was a strike unlike any before or after it.

The Phelps Dodge strike of 1983 changed the company, changed the unions and changed many relationships among the people of Greenlee County.

And it’s still a touchy subject for many.

But it’s also — like it or not — a piece of the area’s history, no less than similar events in the first two decades of the 20th century. For that reason, it needs to be studied, and understood, and talked about.

Its causes, activities and effects are far too complicated to cover in any detail in a short article, so this is simply a brief resume of that event, and of another strike back in 1903, with the purpose of stimulating interest and discussion.

Organized labor and copper

Gov. Bruce Babbitt

The strike of 1983 heavily involved then-Gov. Bruce Babbitt, who first sent more than 200 DPS officers to keep peace, and later followed up by calling out the Arizona National Guard. (All strike photos are courtesy of Daniel Cervantez.

Organized labor began playing a role in the mining and processing of copper at Morenci at the opening of the 20th century. While there were many unions involved at any given time, it was usually the largest who ran negotiations and made decisions about actions.Continue reading

More mining camps could add to Nugget Trail

By Gary Dillard

There are several loops you can make around Arizona that will show you the state’s mining heritage and will also give you many more “nuggets” of excitement.

The initial Nugget Trail, which is just getting under way, is a loop that takes in several cities in central and eastern Arizona. It starts at Globe, and heads either up to the Mogollon Rim or down to Safford and up Highway 191 to Clifton/Morenci and beyond to the Coronado Trail. (See the May Clarion for details.)

But there are other loops that could be added to this trail, which will show off much more of the region’s mining heritage, in addition to Superior, Globe/Miami and Clifton/Morenci.Continue reading

Clifton Council Corner: Sewer upgrade needed

(This guest article is provided by Clifton Town Manager Ian McGaughey.)

There are few things less glamorous than municipal sewer systems. But when you stop to think about it, there are really few things in municipal operations that are so important.

I think it’s safe to say that when we wash the dishes or flush the toilet, we all assume the sewer system is going to do its part and take our wastewater away. Far away. Out of sight, out of mind.

But in the past few years, the uncomfortable reality that Clifton’s wastewater treatment plant and collections system (essentially the pipes and lift stations) are reaching a tipping point of deterioration.

The treatment plant was built in 1954. That’s when Joltin’ Joe DiMaggio married Marilyn Monroe. It’s when “Rock Around The Clock” was at the top of the charts. That’s a long time ago.Continue reading