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Search for the lost Dragoon Pistols Part 2 #113

[music] well we are out here to talk more about
the Dragoon pistols with Larry Hedrick here by my side and we’re down I don’t
know if you’d say in the shadow of but we’re we’re by Whitlow dam some Black
Angus here behind us I hope this is nice because we don’t have to pay them
anything for so we’re on our way out there we thought we’d stop here and let
Larry give a little bit of the history of the area that we’re in right now
because you this is a part of your past yes right here so why don’t you tell us
what where we’re at and what you did out here. okay well you know I went into the
army right out of high school and my dad sold our farm in Kansas and retired out
here and when my active service was over I didn’t have a home so I came out here
to see dad and he was living at the anchor P trailer court in higly and main
and East Mesa and it was owned by a fellow named Pete Allen and Pete was a
retired Navy guy and he had purchased the homestead of Hart Mullins which was
homesteaded in 1915 and the only house in the whole valley was the rock house
that that Hart had built probably with his brother Jesse Hart’s dad was a
stagecoach driver from superior to Florence and Pete you know he knew I had
just got out of the service and wasn’t doing anything and he said he needed
some help would I work for him and I agreed and he was running some cattle
out here and he wanted me to keep an eye on his cattle there were a lot of
mountain lions in this area at the time and in fact some of the ranchers off
over to the east had dogs and they organized a mountain lion hunts on a
regular basis and you know the other thing he wanted me to do was he knew
that with Pete that Whitlow dam was going to be built
and in order to maintain water rights the ditch the irrigation ditch that Hart
Mullins had dug himself had to be maintained in a way that would carry
water and we’re standing next to that ditch today and he he took me down he
said we’ll start at the Narrows and that’s or just about where we are now on
the dam in the background now you have a book I have a book that year where it
talks about the Narrows this was written in 1974 by Bob Garmin and I bought this
in 1976 and read it and there was a article and the page in there that that
mentions supplies would be available a place called The Narrows along Queen
Creek where the flood control dam is and commonly called the narrows well I
didn’t know anything about the lost dragoon pistols at that time well when I
read the story it was the story was published in three different parts in a
newspaper written by a friend of mine and it never mentioned anything until
the last part of it it mentioned the Narrows so I knew exactly where we were
talking about everybody you know the the story told about dominant pointed peak
which everybody thinks was weavers needle and they were attacked right here
were that dam is by the Apaches they never made it any horner narrow wavered
believers needle is over here quite a ways from quite well we’re out
we’re we’re in back of the main mountain right and you pointed out there we’re
nowhere near that nowhere well at least five miles yeah and the ditch here has
been opened up by machinery since I didn’t even know it was this wide now
but it was only about two and a half feet wide and about about this tall and
runoff from the hillsides had broken some of the walls down and backfill the
ditch and he put me to you know where this thing is at least a half a mile
long and he put me out here cleaning out that
ditch and repairing the walls thank you [laughter] and their ad libbing it got to be such
it was the summer of 58 and I was out here the last part of 58 and 59 living
in the rock house it was a Motel 4 and they didn’t leave a light on for you I
mean we didn’t have a which is right over here there’s a big clump of palm
tree right out in the middle of nowhere it’s beautiful and Pete Allen planted
those palm trees out there with this irrigation water and that’s what ended
up in the golf course and anyway he he he brought out two more guys to help me
out one was an Apache Indian and one was a guy fresh over from England and I mean
what a combination a limie an okie and an Apache there’s no PC okay yeah
they Apache never said a word the Englishman never shut up it
was quite a great competition but anyway we finally got the job done and it was
it was an enjoyable experience I mean I was Footloose and fancy-free and I had a
big iron strapped to my hip and Pete had a lever-action rifle in the rock house
and I’d before I’d turn in for bid I’d go out and fire off around the little
mountain lions know that hey somebody’s looking after the cattle cattle there
you go that and Footloose and fancy-free was something else other than being out
here with a gun and some mountain lions but I enjoyed it and and reading the story of the Lost
dragoons and knowing that this book was had a common place called the Narrows
and actually working at the Narrows when when I read the story I knew exactly
where to start looking so when you were working out here this was called the
Narrows is that correct right before the dam is where the dam is now why is that
called the Narrows well you can see by the mountains themselves the mountains
where the dam is between okay it’s like a pass you know
is where the military came through all the time on their way back and forth
from camp Pinal to fort mcdowell they didn’t go through the mountains with
small groups of people the Apaches that would be stupid that would be suicide
but along the trail right in here where what they went through the military
trail right and stage line so we’re standing basically we’re not necessarily
this road or where we’re at but this is where the stage line would go through
exactly yep when I was here of course the dam wasn’t here the dam was built in
1960 I was here in late 58 and early 59 but this is where Pete Allen brought me
to start cleaning out the ditch that carries the water down to or the golf
course is today and it was very narrow very small they you can see that they’ve
they’ve backhoed this thing out into something amazing and you can understand
why they’ve got to handle the water that that comes down through here and they
can easily divert it back down Queen Creek some of it but they’re trying to
salvage whatever water they can now for the valley and as I said it was very
small but it was yeah it was a long ways and it was a lot of work to to muck this
out and repair the walls and I can imagine what Hart went through I mean
well we just done it with shovels we didn’t have anything else that’s amazing
of course now they’ve they’ve come in dug it a little bit more but how far did
you dig with the shovels you say all the way down to the rock house where they
just… just above the golf course from Larry we’re here right
it’s got to be 3/4 of a mile Larry we’re looking right now it’s in white
quartz that you think at how long how far had
that traveled to get to where it is right now when this river was flowing this is
this is Queen Creek this is Queen Creek is not the town Queen Creek or the city
so we’re far from there but this is was Queen Creek right here the water is now
diverted by the dam probably here in the background to the ditch that you built
for help build a hundred years ago well 60… 60 years and years ago and I be
facetious but yeah 60 years ago but the quartz there and then right down below
it here where there’s some little ponds where the mud is you were saying that
that would be a perfect place if you’re gonna look in this area for gold because
it would’ve been carried down through the rear wheels yeah no telling how far
that boulder of quartz was carried down to get here and it’s the only piece you see and
bedrock is what miners go for when they want to find some gold because that’s
where it’s going to settle to that can’t go any deeper now I don’t know if
there’s any gold was traced a gold here but I’m just but this would be the place
to law it to be a good place to look Larry we’re here what is now called
the Queen Valley Country Club bar but why don’t you tell us about the history of the place. this this is a rock house that I lived
in in the late 1958 and early 1959 it was homesteaded originally by Hart
Mullins in 1915 and then Pete Allen purchased it from him and he was running
cattle out here and I lived in this rock house and I kid there’s been a lot
of changes they re-stuccoed the walls there was only the one entrance they’ve
added these entrances and the buildings on to it to where he can’t see much of
the original but were in the original room and particularly the fireplace
which is stone which is also right they re-stuccoed and so this is where I
cowboyed for for a while well anyway you know one morning my two guys Pulled into my
yard I’d never met Hart at that time and then my dad come in Pete Alan must
introduced him to Hart and they were gonna take my dad up to some of their
claims and since I was here they asked if I wanted to go so I went and we went
up to Elephant Butte where they had some claims and then we drove over to
buzzards roost where they had some claims then Hart took us on up to by
Byuse Butte and over against the main mountain he took us to where a shaft had
been dug in a kind of a natural it wasn’t really a cave but it was a cutout
in the mountains it was natural and a lot of work had been done there by hand
building a trail to get to it that was cut in a cliffside and quite a sharp
drop-off and this was the first time I ever heard the Lost Dutchman legend and
Hart and his his brother sit there and told my dad and I the whole legend of
the Lost Dutchman this 1958 and I got to fooling around down there and I went
down to the bottom of the cliffs and stuff and I found an old wheelbarrow
there and it was amazing it’s not something you’d ever buy in a store yeah
you know it was handmade you could see the bottom of it had been bent over all
the way around and the bottom had been forged heated and hammered in together
there was no rivets there was no nothing had an iron wheel and all that sort of
stuff and they yelling up that I’d found this and they said we’ll bring it up it
took me about a half an hour to work around to get up there and they were
amazed by it and Hart was claiming that this dig was one of the Peralta digs and
he was saying we’re within half a mile of the lost Dutchman. this is just up here we’re well
off over here this way yeah okay and you know they were amazed by this wheel
borrow and they came to the conclusion that it was Mexican and I thought well
now how….. would they haul something this far on the back of a burlo you know
but then you couldn’t have made it here so maybe it was I don’t know anyway
my dad took it home put it in his yard for yard art he died in 1966 and
somebody stole it. I would say where is it now yeah I’d love to have it so that
prospect is still up there. oh yes. it’s still up there gosh one of these
days we’re gonna have to go up there and take a look at it if we can
but this amazing because you say we’re like five what about five miles away
from at least from Weavers needle at least five yet we’re still in the wilderness
area the Superstitions and you’re talking about what they allegedly say
was a Peralta mine behind us here we’re in the Queen Creek area not! Queen
Valley. Queen Valley all right well it’s big difference Queen Creek and Queen Valley. okay you
just don’t realize until you get out here how expansive the area that we’re
talking about is it’s amazing so we’re gonna be and so we’re gonna be going up
and talk about the the pistols a little more as we did it in an earlier segment
but this amazing anything else you can tell us about this area well not really
I haven’t been out here for years I was amazed that they dug this out so big but
but didn’t you know it is for flood control as well as irrigation and there
was a well at the rock house and the cattle would come in every
night to get water and my job course was to fire up that he had a generator to
run a pump jack although what he know it was kerosene lamps in the house and the
cattle would bed down there for the night so it was easy to keep an eye on
him you didn’t really need to worry about mountain lions and stuff during
the day it was it was at night and these were yearling calves he had out there so
they would be an easy takedown you know so that was my cowboy days well you know
I’m thinking now a steak dinner would probably alright we’re gonna head on up
a little further and talk about some of the other things along the trail [music]

17 thoughts on “Search for the lost Dragoon Pistols Part 2 #113


  2. As a limey who don’t shut up(lol), I love this history of the Supes’. Such a beautiful and magical land.

  3. I love these stories about the mountains. Also noticed your video on Springfield armory 1911,I going to watch after these videos. My daily carry is a SA 1911 they make a good pistol.

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