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Prescott, Arizona, one of the points from which my dad and I lose GPS, cell service and general focus. That is, unless we consider getting lost the actual focus. We often drive to Prescott and then venture on various roads – paved and unpaved. I learned something on one of our recent trips, while searching topographical maps and trying to figure out how far the road continued (before we ran out of road altogether). I learned that some topo maps have little miner symbols everywhere someone staked a claim, tried to mine, found actual silver, gold or copper. The topo maps we use also have windmill symbols – places where there are windmill driven water pumps. I wonder how old these mines and windmills are. Would we really find water at each of these windmills? Driving and checking the maps tells me there are a lot of people living outside of Prescott on mining claims.

Back to the postcard which says:

Dear folks – no letter to enclose, so just this card now. “Gen Del” here, until we tell you differently. May stay here until 1stof June. Weather lovely here. Love Leah and Harry.

First, General Delivery. That means that the US Post Office keeps your letters until you come and pick them up. I envision breakfast, coffee and then a stroll to the Post Office to collect mail.

This postcard puzzles me a bit. The “Dear Folks” doesn’t quite match with the addressee, Miss Mayne Foster. Perhaps this is a sister, who passed it on to the parents? Or, Leah is the first married of her group and Mayne is the designated recipient of all correspondence? Or perhaps Miss Mayne is the spinster aunt, to whom all postcards are sent? In any case, I like the name – Mayne. I think of a pretty woman, who reads amazing books, or is a musician, or scientist, or something unusual for the times.

May in Prescott is a completely lovely time of the year, the creeks are running, flowers blooming and the air feels slightly crisp, but on its way to summer.

I spent time in Prescott doing various things. Camps in high school. I still love camp and I wish there was a camp for adults – s’mores, bonfire, songs and the outdoors. Mostly the s’mores. Somehow, I can’t justify that unless it is in front of a bonfire with other people. Oh well. I am often in Prescott for the flea market and antiquing. A comment on current outings – if you like flea markets and local color, this one is just wonderful. Not big, but very home town. My dad knows many of the regulars, so there are chats about health, weather, tools, things to buy and sell. Golf – I once got a hole in one, not in Prescott, but the very next course I played was in Prescott Valley, where I hit a shot that landed just 1 inch from the cup. Darn – I was hoping for that second hole in one.

Downtown Prescott is on a grid, four streets surrounding the Court House. One of these streets is known as Whiskey Row, due to the inordinate number of bars. These date back to settlement days, but still attract LOTS of visitors.

The 4thof July is especially fun here. I want to think Leah and Harry extended their stay past the 1stof June and chose to celebrate the 4thof July in Prescott.

The Prescott Transit bus in the foreground is the object that motivated me to buy this card. I love everything about that bus. A little research led me to numerous articles and history about Prescott Transit. It is still in business, although not running a bus service. Articles in local papers cover that bus service, which was a beloved Prescott institution. This company started as Prescott Whipple Stage in 1922 and morphed into Prescott Transit later in its history.

The single mystery of the card is Karl’s. I spend a good hour on the internet, looking at archived papers from the 1950’s, business directories, museum archives and I cannot find Karl’s. I wonder if that’s the drug store on the corner? The signs match…or, maybe a butcher shop? Or? Maybe someone reading this post knows and can let me know what Karl’s is.

Here’s to travels through time, culture and the geography of Arizona.

Sherry

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