By Julie Wiessner
A new book dedicated to Winslow’s history will be unveiled on Monday, April 8. Winslow was authored by Ann-Mary J. Lutzick, with information and photos from the Winslow Historical Society and the Old Trails Museum Archives. “We really wanted to do the book ourselves,” noted Lutzick.
More than 200 vintage images give the readers a way to connect with the history that shaped the community.
“I am very excited about getting the book out there to heighten public awareness to the huge history found in the City of Winslow,” said Lutzick.
A short narrative and a computer model reconstruction of the Homolo’ovi Village gives some of the prehistory, along with paintings that show what generally took place in the Winslow area before the availability of photos.
Anthropologists say the Paleo-Indians, hunter-gatherers, were in the area as the earliest known inhabitants. Those living in the Homol’ovi villages were the next group, and were sustained by the Little Colorado River, living just northeast of Winslow, but later migrating north due to climactic changes.
A place to cross the Little Colorado River offered an opportunity for people to pass through on trails, then wagon roads and finally, Mormon settlers passed by on their way to create Bingham City, three miles to the north.
Winslow was not established as a city until the coming of the railroad. Some of the history recalled through photos features the Atlantic and Pacific (A&P) Railroad. While laying out the firm’s new transcontinental line, railroad officials also laid out the Winslow town site in 1880 near the river. The town was named in honor of railroad executive Edward F. Winslow.
When the Santa Fe Railway bought the A&P and transferred its division headquarters there, Winslow blossomed into a bustling city, and became a shipping point for area ranches, trading posts and lumber mills. There was also a railroad passenger service, and travelers dined at Fred Harvey’s with the Harvey Girls and stayed at La Posada Hotel.
Cars began to replace the railroad in the 1920s, and Winslow became one of the cities located along the now historic Route 66, which now includes the Standin’ on the Corner Park and Winslow’s other historic attractions. The adjoining Hopi and Navajo lands still draw visitors to Winslow from around the world.
This small snippet of information is nothing compared to what is contained within the book, and gives only a glance into what can be found inside its pages.
Lutzick noted, “The pictures included in this book were taken from the Old Trails Museum Archives, donated by former and current Winslow residents, and is a brilliant way for people to look at the history of a place.” The book explores the city’s prehistory, founding, expansion and heyday through the 1960’s.
While Lutzick was following her love for history from Richmond, Va., where she was born, to Phoenix, where she worked for the Arizona Humanities Council, and coordinated its grant program and Smithsonian traveling exhibitions, she met and married her love, Dan Lutzick. At the time of the Smithsonian exhibition’s arrival, he was an artist and a partner in La Posada Hotel restoration project. The couple owns the Snowdrift Art Space at 120 W. Second St. in Winslow.
If you are interested in the prehistory of the Winslow area and love old photographs, Winslow is a book that should be of interest. It will soon be available for $21.99 at local retailers, online bookstores, or through Arcadia Publishing at www.arcadiapublishing.com or by phone at 1-888-313-2665.
By Julie Wiessner