Twentynine Palms Historical Society

29 Palms Historical Society News

From: "29 Palms Historical Society News" <webmaster@PROTECTED>
Subject: 29 Palms Historical Society News
Date: October 5th 2021
News from the Twentynine Palms Historical Society!
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Photo of Barbara Gothard

  The 2021-2022 Second Friday Lecture Series continues...
    Friday, October 8th at 7:00pm

   "Contradictions - Bringing The Past Forward"
    by Barbara Gothard

NOTE: Masks will be required for all attendees and social distancing measures will be in effect.

Join artist Barbara Gothard for a discussion about her Art+Humanities project, "Contradictions – Bringing the Past Forward." Gothard will discuss the investigative and creative journey that guided the development of this project.

Gothard will discuss the processes and rationale that led her to develop this visual interpretation of the stories of the African American homesteaders who settled in the far Eastern Mojave Desert in 1910. Twenty-three homesteaders responded to an advertisement in the 1910 Los Angeles Herald specifically recruiting "colored" (the term used at that time) homesteaders to the area. As an African American female artist who lives in the desert, Gothard will share the cultural relevance of the homesteaders' experiences in the context and contrast of her lived experience, with a focus on identity, community, disillusionment, and family.

The presentation will also include artwork images, the challenges Gothard experienced as a contemporary artist creating images to convey historical events, and her plans to produce the artworks during her November Artist Residency at BoxoPROJECTS in Joshua Tree.

Barbara Gothard is a visual artist specializing in oil paintings, digital paintings, and installations. Her artworks are symbolically autobiographical, punctuated with unanticipated openings leading to questions of what lies beyond. Gothard's art is exhibited locally, nationally, internationally, and in private collections. She is a published art writer and contributor, former global business leader, and educator with Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Art and a Ph.D. in Educational Administration. She serves on the Advisory Board of JTHAR and is an Emeritus Board Member of the Artists Council.

  Sponsored by the Desert Institute at Joshua Tree National Park and the Twentynine Palms Historical Society, this in-person lecture is held on Friday, October 8, at 7 pm. The fee for the presentation is $5.00 paid at the door.

For further information call:
The Desert Institute
or email desertinstitute@PROTECTED

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Oldtimer of the Year 2021 Honoree

Thurman Carson

Photo of Thurman Carson

Thurman has lived in Twentynine Palms since 1946, when he and his younger brother, Johnny, were adopted by Vi and Paul Carson after their mother was killed in a car accident in Pasadena.

Thurman was just 6 years old when he and his brother arrived in Twentynine Palms. He attended first grade in the old school where the Post Office is today, then went to school in the Quonset hut for three years. He attended fifth grade in the new Twentynine Palms Elementary School off Utah Trail, and attended the sixth through eighth grades in the Old Schoolhouse on Morongo Unified School District property at Utah Trail and Two Mile Road.

In 1954, Thurman’s class was the last one to graduate from the Old Schoolhouse, which then sat dormant until 1992, when the Twentynine Palms Historical Society purchased the building from MUSD and moved it to its current location on National Park Drive to transform it into a museum that opened in 1995.

From 1954 to 1958, he attended Twentynine Palms High School. While growing up, he worked in the family business, Carson Roofing, which he continued to do on the side after going to work in the salt mines in Amboy after graduation.

After eight years with the salt mines, he went to work at the Iron Age Mine in the Dale Mining District east of Twentynine Palms, serving as Kaiser Steel Corp. union representative and bodyguard for the president of operation engineers. He held those positions until the mine shut down a year and 10 months later.

By the time the Iron Age Mine reopened, he was again working full-time at Carson Roofing, where he would stay until retiring in 2018 and turning the business over to his youngest son, Devon Carson.

Throughout his life, Thurman has been active in community affairs, serving on the Twentynine Palms Chamber of Commerce board for four years, two as president.

While serving as chamber president and for many years after, Thurman put on at least eight rodeos for Pioneer Days, and put on three rodeos for Grubstake Days in Yucca Valley.

He also was a member of the Needles Rod and Gun Club in Lake Havasu, Arizona, serving as the club’s president for six years. The club was started by veterans, including Paul and Vi Carson, in the early 1940s.

Paul and Vi Carson, who had no biological children of their own, are remembered as wonderful people who extended kindness to everyone. The couple picked up and fed local miners on holidays and helped many who needed assistance in Twentynine Palms and the surrounding communities.

In 1952, they also took in Randy and Clem Rogers, the adopted sons of actor, writer and Congressman Will Rogers Jr., who asked the couple if they would take the two boys to Twentynine Palms for one semester. One semester stretched into many, and stayed with the Carsons until graduating from TPHS.

The Carsons loved all four boys equally, and each considered themselves brothers. Thurman Carson has many stories of adventures with his brothers, and of outings the family enjoyed that included visiting movie sets with Will Rogers Jr.

It is with great pleasure that the 29 Palms Historical Society names Thurman Carson as our 2021 Oldtimer of the Year Honoree.

Our Museum and Gift Shop is now open
Wednesday - Sunday 1:00-4:00 PM

Now available in our gift shop

One With The Creosote cover
One With The Creosote – Memories of a Desert Child
With a blending of poetic imagery and journalistic prose, writer Chris Tiffany reflects on her childhood growing up on the Mojave Desert during the '50s and '60s, to reveal the origins of an interwoven connection to the natural world around her and its influence on her life's paths and perspectives.

Tiffany, a Santa Ynez Valley resident who grew up in Twentynine Palms, is daughter of the late Joe and Margot Spangenberg, who moved their family from San Pedro, California, to Twentynine Palms in 1953. The Oasis of Mara, at the northern entrance to Joshua Tree National Park, was her childhood playground.

Photo of Chris Tiffany Since age 10, Tiffany has kept personal diaries and journals, and credits her writing talent to her mother, who worked as a reporter for The Desert Trail for many years.

A graduate of the University of California, Irvine, Tiffany is a former director of the Santa Ynez Valley Family School, whose curriculum encourages exploration of the surrounding Los Padres National Forest as an extension of the classroom.

A 40-year resident of the Santa Ynez Valley, she is a past editor of the Women's Environmental Watch newsletter, and served as the initial publicist and program coordinator for Arts Outreach for many years.

She continues to enjoy frequent retreats to her cabin on the boundary of Joshua Tree National Park.

One With The Creosote cover
Willie Boy & The Last Western Manhunt
By Clifford E Trafzer

The saga of Willie Boy has survived over one hundred years and the captivating story remains alive today. American Indians throughout Southern California, the American Southwest, and Great Basin remember the story well. Willie Boy’s pursuit of redemption, his attempt to become culturally whole again, reflects a tragic journey that still resonates today, over a hundred years on from the deaths of William Mike and Carlota. In his journey to survive, Willie Boy challenged numerous lawmen eager to capture or kill him, prompting the posse, press, and citizens to demonize Willie Boy.

Clifford E. Trafzer is a Distinguished Professor of History and Costo Chair of Amerian Indian Affairs at the University of California, Riverside. He has published A Chemehuevi Song, Fighting Invisible Enemies, Strong Hearts & Healing Hands, and Shadows of Sherman Institute.

Remember Our Gift Shop When Looking For That Special Gift

    You'll find Howard Pierce ceramics, sun purple glass, things made by local artists and craftspeople, and books and items of local interest in our gift shop. Be sure to stop by and do your shopping.

    We're open 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.

Engraved Commemorative Bricks
Bricks in front of Old Schoolhouse steps

Reserve yourself a place in history and help support the museum by purchasing an engraved brick.

Over the years many of our members and supporters have purchased Engraved Commemorative Bricks. The proceeds of these brick sales, beyond the actual cost of the bricks and engraving, goes to our general fund. The bricks are permanently displayed around our flagpole and in front of the Old Schoolhouse steps. Bricks are still available and you may contribute a brick in anyone's name, your company, or organization name.

Engraved bricks are $35.00 for one engraved line or 4 bricks for $120.00. Two additional lines may be purchased for $5.00 each.

The bricks, unless requested to be grouped, will be installed, at random, in front of the steps of the Old Schoolhouse.

Download an order form here. Order forms may also be picked up at the Old Schoolhouse Museum.

The following businesses support our Society,please support them.

29 Palms Inn
Jane & Paul Smith, Owners/Innkeepers

29 Palms Creative Center and Gallery
Gretchen Grunt, Proprietor

A New Creation Flowers & Gifts
Faith Arwick, Proprietor

California Retired Teachers Association
Hi Desert Division 62

PO Box 561, Twentynine Palms, CA 92277

Campbell House Inn
Heidi Grunt, Innkeeper

Desert Christ Park Foundation

Florals, etc By Pat
Pat Flynn-Zawojski, Artist

Friends of Wonder Valley
PO Box 1704, Twentynine Palms, CA 92277

The Gladys Carol Scholarship Program, Inc.
Cheryl Gillon, Founder

High Desert Test Sites

Homestead Inn
Jerri Hagman, Proprietor

Jim Bagley, Realtor

Joshua Tree Mini-Storage

McClay Distributors, Inc.
Bill McClay & Debby McClure

Morongo Basin Historical Society

Smitty's Bargain Box
Jacob & Crystal Smith, proprietors
73355 Sullivan Road
Twentynine Palms, CA 92277

Sunnyvale Garden Suites
Tony & Cora Naraval, proprietors

Swift Pool & Spa Service
Shawn Swift, proprietor

Twenty-Nine Palms Band of Mission Indians

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