Book Signing By Pioneer Daughters Set

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The Daughters of the Gila County Pioneers have released the second volume of stories about the pioneer women of Gila County.

Members of the organization will sign and sell copies of the book from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Feb. 3 and 4 at Git a Rope Art and Antique Corral.

Town historian Jayne Peace Pyle wrote the forward for the book, telling the history of the organization.

"The Daughters of the Gila County Pioneers was founded by a small group of women in Payson, Arizona, in 1986, for the purpose of preserving the history and heritage of the pioneers who settled in Gila County, Arizona, prior to statehood, February 14, 1912

"One-hundred-fifty women who now represent the Daughters, have written and compiled these stories and donated photographs so the past will be remembered. They are direct descendants of the pioneer women who settled what is now Gila County, Arizona. With this unique heritage in mind, they have tried to accurately record the past and distinguish the vital role pioneer women played in settling America's Southwest.

"Pioneer women journeyed to the Arizona Territory on foot, horseback, or in covered wagons. Many buried children and husbands along the way. They gave birth under harsh conditions and many babies died.

"After they arrived, crude lodging was erected near rivers and streams and then the women's work began. Gardens had to be planted, children had to be educated, and food had to be stored for the coming winter. For pioneer women this work was often accomplished with a child in the womb, a second in the arms, and a third tugging on her skirts.

"Pretty flour sack curtains, rosebushes growing outside kitchen doors, and patchwork quilts were evidence of a woman's presence, even in the most isolated areas. These noble, God-fearing, pioneer women sacrificed much to tame Arizona's wild land.

"The Daughters of the Gila County Pioneers have chosen to honor their foremothers with this book ... a permanent record of their families, their hardships, their joys, and their everyday lives.

"This book also contains stories of the daughters and granddaughters of these pioneer women. Born in the twentieth century, these younger women have had easier lives in some ways, yet more difficult in others. Most of them hold on to and revere the traditions of yesteryear."

A total of 82 women are included in the stories, plus the book contains recipes, remedies and poetry and many old photographs.

Eddie Armer, a member of another Gila County pioneer family, will be on hand as well, selling and signing copies of his CD, "Country Lovin'."

Git a Rope Art and Antique Corral is located at 1104 S. Beeline Highway. The book costs $25 and the CD is $15.

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