13. A Tour Through Arizona

April 23, 2011

I’ve just realized that those who are subscribed aren’t getting the map with the email – I should have known that file size prevented the map coming through email.  Please just click the name of the blog.  That will take you to a very similar page with a readily viewable map embedded just below this remark.  (And, if you have time, look at the google earth first 13 segments too, the paths are getting crowded.)

View the First Ten Segments Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

View Segments 11-20 Without Popups. Google maps won’t let me put more than 10 segments on on map or I’d post segments 1-20 there.

View the first twenty segments without popups on Google Earth If you click this button it will offer a google earth download.  You will need to have Google Earth Installed.  This is by far the best way to view all his trips to age 25.

View the first thirteen segments with popups on Google Earth This will mean a download again.  But it’s worth it.  Because…  when you have it up in google earth you can close the windows, then open them in order to see his progression.

Here and There Synopsis:

13.1 No Work at Globe

January 11, 1900

Leaving San Francisco fast with a railroad ticket to Bisbee Arizona, Hayes strikes up conversation with a miner who persuades him that job prospects are better in Globe. Southern Arizona is all “dry desert hills and even mountains, with some plains when one gets away toward the Gila River.” Following the friendly miner’s tip, Hayes departs the train at Globe where he finds two big copper mines, the Buffalo and the Old Dominion, both operating at reduced capacity just now.

With the Buffalo and the Old Dominion slack, the town teems with experienced miners waiting for work to pick back up again. In the down time, any of the unemployed miners with a few dollars left fill “the usual saloons, gambling houses, … and Hurdy Gurdies.” Hayes can size up a poor situation; if he doesn’t catch on with steady work in a week he’ll strike out across the desert to Jerome – 200 miles to the northwest.

13.2. Stumbling to Tonto Creek

January 15, 1900

Hayes’ diary gives no indication that a 200-mile walk across the open desert gives him any particular pause for concern. However, after three days hiking, “for some reason I’m feeling giddy and not able to keep on. No pain, but half asleep and sometimes staggering.” In this dull-witted condition, finding water becomes a real concern. He blunders onto the Salt River but its brackish water is undrinkable. A couple of Mexican men he meet somewhere in the desert speak no English but point him toward Tonto Creek. He eventually finds fresh water there, saving his life but failing to relieve the strange symptoms that have him stumbling along in a stupor. Sleeping at night on bitter cold sand then tottering around the desert all day under a blazing sun, he writes, “If something doesn’t happen, I’m gone.”

13.3 Typhoid Fever in Payson

February 25, 1900

When finally able to write in his diary six weeks later, Hayes records that incipient typhoid fever caused his delirium in the desert. From Tonto Creek he staggered to a hotel in Payson for the night, but could eat nothing the next morning. By great good fortune, Payson has a physician. When Hayes hauled himself into Dr. Maisch’s office, “he tapped me on the shoulder blades and that was the last thing I knew for two weeks. I dropped on the floor.”

Dr. Maisch put him to bed for a month. By the end of February Hayes is still, “so weak I can just stand, and so hungry I could eat anything.” For some reason Dr. Maisch has him confined to a diet of only raw eggs.

March 15, 1900

Immediately following the typhoid, Hayes came down with blood poisoning from a blister on his hand. Two kind residents of Payson took him in: “But for Mr. and Mrs. Robertson, who cared for me during my convalescence, I would have died.” By March 15 he is strong enough for light work at odds jobs around the hotel in Payson where at least the food is good – and he’ll need the money; the hospital bills amount to $50, all of which he intends to pay.

March 31, 1900

“Payson is one street lined by a few stores… there are perhaps 150 people in the village and it is 100 miles from the nearest railway.” It’s an unlikely place for a doctor in 1900. But Dr. Maisch was here and Hayes survived so he’s working long hours to pay his doctor bill as well – and “then I must pay the Robertson’s something too.”

Mining and cattle are the only industries in this high desert region where just enough water runs in the Tonto Creek and Verde River to support sparse pasture for grazing. “One can see real cowboys here.” The riding skill of some of these men awes Hayes; one, Wash Gibson, “took second place in the state fair for riding.” With a few drinks in him, the awkward-riding Gibson starts racing up and down Payson’s one street, jumping in and out of the saddle from side to side of his horse. “He is merely the best of a lot of super horsemen at that.”

Indian ruins dot the hillsides around Payson. Hayes speculates that these agricultural villages were destroyed by the Apaches, “who lived by banditry and pillaging their neighbors.” Even now, with the Apaches subdued and confined to a nearby reservation, immediate memories of “the Apache Kid and other renegade Indians” frighten the local residents.

The Apache Kid

April 7, 1900

A man everyone in Payson calls “Uncle Ben” runs the hotel where Hayes works. He came to Payson from the South to escape “the dominant Yankee rule so distasteful to him after the Civil War.” To Uncle Ben, Hayes is a Northerner, so, just like when he was a boy, Hayes must re-fight the Civil War at unfair odds. Tired of that game, and square in his accounts, Hayes plans to leave Payson headed for mining work in Jerome.

In describing the lawlessness of this area, Hayes cites two wars: one between cattlemen and sheep herders; and a second between “Mormons and Gentiles.” The cattlemen have won for now by scattering the sheep and killing the shepherds from ambush. The Gentiles have won for now by gentler means – after a “dog fight” at the school board meeting. “But all of them treat me well, and I have little preference among them.”

13.4 With A Singing Cowboy at Camp Verde

April 23, 1900

A ride out of Payson on the mail wagon with the Mormon mail carrier cost Hayes only an earful about “the one and only true faith.… But he was a very decent chap, and for a dollar or two gave me a horse to go from Pine to Camp Verde.” At Pine, Hayes picked up with a “rollicking cowboy” who sang all along the spectacularly beautiful ride to Camp Verde. At fossil creek they saw wild cattle pushed up steep canyon sides by cowboys riding out to return the escapees to nearby ranches.

13.5 A Long Dry Walk

April 23, 1900

The dollar or two Hayes gave for the horse must have been a rental only as far as Camp Verde. From there he hiked 25 miles across the desert with no water other than what he carried until he found “an Irrigation ditch in the upper Verde valley.” The shallow well that he had counted on along the way had “several bloated rattlesnakes floating on its surface,” so he passed that by. Restored by the water at the ditch, he made it across the desert into Jerome.

The morning after arriving in Jerome he “got on easily enough” at the United Verde Mine. Four days later, still weak from the typhoid and blood poisoning, his health collapsed and the “blasphemous Cornish boss” fired him for falling asleep on the midnight watch. But, at least the United paid him for those four days work, providing enough of a stake to get by until he could turn up lighter ranch work for Walt and Ed Van Deeren “some six or seven miles from Jerome.”

13.6 Ranch Work Near Jerome

May 20,1900

The ranchers in this fertile valley near the Verde River irrigate alfalfa to feed their livestock. After a month of ranch work, Hayes likes the bosses and they like him, but he will not stay – it’s just too lonely.

Some of the richest copper mines in the world were discovered impossibly high on a mountainside overlooking the Verde Valley, so that’s where the town of Jerome perches. “It is a one-man town,” controlled by an absentee owner named W.A. Clark through “henchmen who carry out his every wish.” Just now, Jerome merits the name “city of churches” because a newly built second house of worship stands alongside the “28 saloons, and several gambling houses, to say nothing of the bordellos.” A miner’s money that doesn’t go to these establishments returns to the United Verde through the company store or the boarding house.

William Andrews Clark

Other prospectors have located smaller mines in the hills around Jerome. Hayes’ boss Lee Van Deeren founded the Iron King and sold it to W.A. Clark for $45,000. With the money, Van Deeren tempts Hayes to go partners on an angora goat herd. “I declined because of the infinite loneliness.”

May 31, 1900

Hayes’ work at the ranch varies from: fetching Mrs. Van Deeren’s mother, who will act as midwife for Mrs. Van Deeren, from the abandoned military post at Camp Verde; to the yearly round up branding calves and separating beef cattle for export; and everything in between. One wonders why Lee Van Deeren’s stern mother-in-law demands that Hayes must leave the ranch during the “blessed event,” but her iron decree suits him just fine – “It gives me a chance to return to the coast and to the sea.”

13.7 Paid Off in Jerome

June 2, 1900

Though he’s upset about losing a good ranch hand, Lee Van Deeren pays Hayes off and drives him into Jerome. Van Deeren can’t convince Hayes to stay on, but while he’s in town he plans to win back every cent he paid Hayes in salary. Hayes writes that Van Deeren headed straight “to a gambling house saying he would quit when he had won back my wages. He did just that too, and cleaned out a crap game, much to the disgust of the operator.”

After a quick look around Jerome with its “shop-worn girls,” saloons and gambling joints, Hayes reflects on his own moral state: “I will admit all my good resolutions begun at Victor and Cripple Creek have vanished. I’m as bad as the rest.”

With nothing to keep him in Jerome – “To me life here is not worthwhile.” – Hayes is not quite sure where to go next. It’s been six months since deserting the McCulloch, California should be safe by now, then “perhaps the Boxer War in China, now beginning.”

13.8 Four Days: Eight Hundred Miles

June 7,1900

By now Hayes knows how to rides the rails. Here’s how a hobo gets to San Francisco moving fast:

At Jerome, he paid his way to Jerome Junction, 28 miles out;
at Jerome Junction, he hopped a cattle freight train to Ash Fork;
at Ash Fork, he enlisted a Mexican to pop the door of a coal train for the ride to Barstow (where he bought his broke Spanish speaking companion dinner);
at Barstow, despite the protests of the brakeman, the engineer on the same train he and the Mexican had jumped enlisted Hayes to pass coal until reaching Mojave;
at Mojave he ate then caught the first train to Tehachapi;
at Tehachapi, he slept the night then caught a “lone engine” to Bakersfield;
at Bakersfield, he caught another train all the way north to Port Costa;
finally, at Port Costa, he paid ferry fare to Vallejo and then on to San Francisco.

“I’m dead tired after four hectic days over the more than 800 miles across the desert to this place.”

5. Williams to Hico

February 25, 2011

I’d like to try a new format making it easier to go directly to the map with popups.  I think it will appear immediately below.  Scroll down if you don’t want to click the balloons on the map.  Enlarging the map will make the popups fit better.

View All Segments Published to Date on Google Maps As the diary progresses, the entire journey becomes increasingly amazing.

View the First Ten Segments Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

Requested photo places (see About Photo Requests):

– Gallup NM
– Isleta NM
– Las Cruces NM  (filled)
– El Paso TX   (filled)
– Juarez Mexico

Previous photo requests

Here and There diary Synopsis:

5.1  Quit After All

March 7, 1898

Whatever made Hayes change his mind about quitting happened an hour after payday.  He showed up late, was advised by the bookkeeper to say nothing to “the old man” about leaving, and managed to get his previous month’s salary.  He pocketed the money, jumped a freight for one ride all the way to Gallup, New Mexico, and “almost froze all the way.”

Throughout the diary Hayes makes broad stereotypical remarks based on race, ethnicity and national origin.  Often his remarks are derogatory to native people, as in the entry on this date.  Because this edited version of his diary is intended for readers of all ages, I am choosing to omit those types of remarks even though these omissions will give a sanitized picture of Hayes and of the times in which he lived.  For historians interested in this particular aspect of his diary, unedited copies are available in various museums.

5.2  Hungry Enough to Eat a Four Horned Sheep

March 10, 1898

Of course Hayes cannot always outsmart the railroad conductors and brakemen.  He caught a freight shortly after arriving in Islet (sic) “but was ditched half a mile out and had to hike back to this place.”  The locals had “a four horned sheep tied up as a curiosity,” and Hayes is so hungry he and another boy seriously discuss butchering it for a meal.  Instead, he “managed to buy a little food,” to get by while looking for the next eastbound train.

5.3  Too Near the Fire

March 14, 1898

On the trip south to Las Cruces, Hayes “doubled up with a German who speaks such broken English I can scarcely understand him.”  In some cold desert place alongside the rail line, the two men slept huddled so near a small fire Hayes’ clothing burst into flame.  “Dutch,” the German speaking companion, put it out but not before both Hayes’ hands suffered burns.

Organ Mountains East of Los Cruces
photo by Mary Katherine Ray of Southern NM, 2008

Burned, sleepless, and cold from exposure, Hayes writes, “I’m tired of this bumming along the railways.”  In fact, his money earned at the sawmill, more than enough to pay train fare home to Hico, survived the fire.  But he refuses to pay fare on principle:  “the railroads are so greedy one wants to beat them back”

5.4  Walking Pneumonia in Hico

March 17, 1898

As his freighter pulls into El Paso, Hayes sees several police officers searching the train for vagrant riders.  Fortunately, a Mexican worker carrying a heavy can of milk comes by – evidently in need of help.  “I lined up on his other side, paying no attention to the torrent of Spanish he handed me.”  The “railway bulls” give the unlikely pair suspicious glares but the milkman gets assistance and Hayes makes it clear of the rail yard – just far enough to collapse into a hotel room with pneumonia.

Mt. Cristo Rey, El Paso TX
photo by Mary Katherine Ray, 2010

March 23, 1898

The Texas doctor Hayes eventually visited diagnosed walking pneumonia and recommended him to the county hospital for the indigent.  Hayes will pay his way when the price is fair.  Surprised that his scruffy young patient had any money at all, the doctor charged only two dollars.

If you’re Hayes Perkins, walking pneumonia means ignore the pain in your side and walk across the border to see what Juarez looks like.  Very much like the north side of the border: “saloons, cribs filled with painted women and many gambling houses.”  Maybe more burros and chickens in the streets.

5.5  Goodbye to Mother and Sisters

March 30,1898

Despite the dangers of cold, fire, illness and possible arrest he faces jumping trains, Hayes hates to shirk his, “public duty to beat [the railways] if possible.”  Evidently though, pneumonia and burned hands are enough to compromise duty for the moment; he pays fare to Hico where his, “mother and sisters have changed.”

The girls, Jennie and May older, then Annie, Memrie, Pearl, and Vance younger, have all “increased in stature and knowledge.  Mother and father have divorced and now live in two sides of a divided house.  His father “accosted” Hayes in the Post Office, “but I ignored him.”

That one paragraph is all he has to say about his family after a five-year absence.  The flowers are blooming beautifully on the Texas plains.  Everyone talks of the big gold strike in the Yukon.  War will soon be declared with Spain.  These observations all get more space in the diary than word of the family.

April 10, 1898

The pneumonia flared up again and Hayes swears he’s done hopping freight trains.  “I have paid for it times over in money as well as in health.”  Ten days reunion with the family has him itching for the road again.  He’s rebuffed all his father’s attempts at reconciliation.  Perhaps he returned home to show his father that, “at twenty I’m big enough to stand him off.”

But where to go?  Kansas City?  Seattle?  The Klondike?  The last would be a fool’s game:   “If there is good ground there, it has long since been taken as in every rush that ever happened in this world.”  No firm decision yet, “but I’ll have a fling at something.”

April 20, 1898

On the day of his departure, “Mother is in an agony of worry.”  She supports the six girls by taking in washing, menial work held in lowest regard.  Hayes records two sentences touching on his own sense of responsibility to stay and help his mother support the girls:  “I would like to make enough to keep her in comfort, also my sisters.  But work is hard to find and money is slippery to hold on to.”  Three days later he is in Kansas City.

4. San Francisco to Williams

February 19, 2011

View This Segment on Google Maps The numbered titles below also link to this same map.

View All Segments Published to Date on Google Maps As the diary progresses, the entire journey becomes increasingly amazing.

View the First segment on Google maps You can view the numbered segments from first to most recent in the archive at right.

View the First Ten Segments Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

Requested photo places (see About Photo Requests):

– Mojave CA
– Randsburg CA
– Garlock CA
– Telescope Peak above Death Valley CA
– Kramer CA
– Harvey House at Needles CA
– Kingman AZ
– Williams AZ

Previous photo requests

Here and There diary Synopsis:

4.1 Orchard work at Stockton

September 18,1897

Walking nine miles eastward out of Stockton, Hayes and Marshall stumble onto a gang picking grapes, ask for work, and “are now a few dollars ahead.”  They eat well and sleep comfortably in a barn but scratch themselves raw with some kind of skin rash.  When not at the vineyard, the two stroll the Central Valley “selecting” fruit of every kind until no two men could eat their enormous windfall.

September 29, 1897

The two friends pop back over to see San Francisco again before parting ways.  Hayes could not wish for a finer traveling mate than Marshall, but “to get anywhere, to do the things one wishes to do, he must play the lone hand.”

Traveling alone now on his way to the mines in the Mojave, Hayes stops through Stockton where he finds some medical advice:  a hobo he meets in the rail yard informs him he has “crumbs” (Hayes’ quotes) or “in plain American, lice.”  Apparently mercurial ointment was available to indigent travelers in those days, Hayes anointed the seams of his clothing, his hair, and “a plentiful quantity elsewhere.”

4.2  Freight Trains to Mojave

October 3, 1897

While riding the rails towards Mojave, Hayes suffered a much more serious injury.  Initially all went smoothly; “an old miner” introduced Hayes to a conductor who, for a dollar, would let both men ride in the caboose.  Beyond Bakersfield they rode in the open air on the decks of boxcars listening to coyotes howl in the lonesome desert over Tehachapi pass.  The boxcar must have been near the smokestack, close enough that a cinder out of the stack caught Hayes in the eye nearly blinding him.

Hayes describes Mojave as little more than a junction between the Southern Pacific and Santa Fe railways.  A couple of saloons, a store, restaurants, and a hotel for the affluent make a sorry little town where the tracks cross.  He does enjoy watching the gamblers practice their artistry of “beating the other fellow to it.”

4.3  Racing Coyotes to Garlock

October 5, 1897

Continuing on by stage, Hayes must part with his new friend the miner who, “had to invest his every remaining cent into alcoholic research in Mojave.”  Not to worry, when the money is gone, such an experienced miner will find ready work out here.

By contrast, his new traveling companions on the stage from Mojave fail to impress: “ A fancy lady of the evening, a gambler, a drunken miner or two.”  However, a pair of coyotes running along in front of the coach for miles charm him by cutting cross-country to the new road whenever the coach turns and leaping ahead at a crack of the driver’s whip.

The mines of Randsburg, ten miles further on, locate their stamp mills for crushing ore at Garlock because “water is near the surface here in quantity.”  At Garlock Hayes finds work developing a mine site for “a Mr. Worth, who has claims in the desert out toward Death Valley.”

4.4  Lonely Mountains as Far as the Eye Can See

October 8, 1897

The Panamints, the Slate Ranges, the Funeral Ranges, and even Telescope Peak rising above Death Valley “perhaps a hundred miles away,” stand lonely in the clear desert air.

Hayes has Worth and his partners, Dr. and Mrs. Garrison who run the mine, “sized up as crooks.”  The old lady speaks constantly of her son, “a preternaturally bright person.”  At least Hayes can learn from a buddy, Jack Nosser, “a grizzled old miner from the Black Hills of South Dakota” full of tales of his friends Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane.  Hayes works a “whim” lifting material out of forty or fifty foot mine test shafts.

The food is not good:  bacon and beans.  And water costs two dollars a barrel.

October 20, 1897

One story Mrs. Garrison tells has her and Dr. Garrison confining their ten-year-old son Joe in a dark room for two years to slow his extravagant mental growth.  When Joe shows up looking like a tramp, Hayes has an opportunity to assess the cure:  “All I can say is, it was effective.”

As for Dr. Garrison, a teamster tells Hayes that Garrison practiced doctoring in Anaheim using a couple of “fast girls who set up most of the gay youth in the city.”  Garrison and the girls split the money Garrison made posing as “an expert at curing social diseases.”  Unbeknownst to the teamster, Dr. Garrison happened to be riding in the back of the wagon for this recitation.  Both ended with red faces.

October 29, 1897

Jack, the miner from South Dakota, has decided to quit.  When making his announcement at breakfast, Jack kicked Hayes under the table and both gave notice together.  The “old lady” is so full of lies about her famous relations, Hayes can’t resist delivering one last whopper of his own.  “I have to lie in sheer self defense.”  He knows Mrs. Garrison doesn’t believe his tale of seeing five men hung with a single pull, but, “the last liar always has a tremendous advantage.”  He and Jack will be off with the teamster when he comes round again on his regular route.

4.5  Prospectors at Randsburg

October 31, 1897

Jack and Hayes catch a ride most of the way to Randsburg.  A few years previously, “a $600 nugget was found near Red Rock”; now mines dot the landscape looking for its source.  Most are barren, a few are “stringers,” with narrow unpredictable veins, but “the big thing is the Yellow Aster” from which much ore will be taken after all the stringers peter out.

Another kind of prospector works this area as well – a real estate agent, who Hayes describes as “lower than the pimps who prey on girls in the houses of prostitution,” offers lots for sale in Johannesburg, a town just east of Randsburg on a better location.

By now Hayes considers himself knowledgeable about the “tricks of poker, seven up, and lots of games.”  In the gambling houses, easy money can be won from an inexperienced player, especially if he’s drunk.  But then Hayes runs into a real professional, loses all his easy money, but wins a bit of free advice:  “ If you work don’t gamble, and if you gamble don’t work.  We are not here for our health.”  (Hayes’ quotes.)

4.6  Snookering a Brakeman at Barstow

November 3, 1897

Nothing going on at Randsburg grabs Hayes’ attention enough to hold him there.  The rail line is not near, but walking suits him to begin with.

Along the course of his twenty-eight mile walk through the desert toward a station on the Santa Fe line at Kramer, Hayes passes another “real estate proposition” called St. Elmo.  He sees no houses, no water, no possibility for a town, only white sticks marking lots and streets.  His own need for water in this dangerously desolate region pushes him hurriedly toward Kramer.

Immediately after hopping a passing freight train at Kramer, a watchful brakeman assesses Hayes a 25¢ bribe to let him ride.  Protesting penury, Hayes talks the fee down to 10¢ so he’ll have 15¢ to eat at Barstow.

Instead of spending his 15¢ upon arrival, Hayes trades a couple of hours cleaning up for a meal at the Santa Fe Harvey House.  While he’s at the mop, the train crew enters for dinner.  After pretentiously and unsuccessfully asking everyone at the table to change his twenty dollar gold piece, the brakeman inquires sarcastically if Hayes might help him out.  With some satisfaction, Hayes reports, “I accommodated him.”  The brakeman can say nothing in the presence of his conductor for fear he’ll be censured for “carrying hobos.”

4.7  A Long Ride to Needles

November 5, 1897

Just as Hayes hops a freighter in Barstow, he sees his brakeman sent out on the same train.  With a pretty good suspicion Hayes must be on board, the brakeman looks everywhere except into the feed rack of the cattle car where Hayes lies just out of reach the horns of the wild steers below.

Seventeen hours and 172 miles later, “sidetracked for every train on the way,” having eaten nothing and drunk only at a darkened way station, Hayes and the train pull into Needles.

And who enters the Harvey House at Needles the next evening just as Hayes sits down to supper?  His brakeman, “who beefed in a semi-serious way” about the fifteen cents and the twenty dollar gold piece.  “But I paid for his meal, and all was lovely again.”

4.8  Cold in Williams

November 7, 1897

Hayes jumps another train to Kingman and then pays fare to Williams, “a town kept by a large sawmill,” where he’d like to find work.  But for now, he takes a job at “an eating house” run by a bullying woman who is never satisfied except with her drunken son and sanctified daughter.  The girl’s job as a typist, her engagement to “some clerk,” and, “worse,” her attendance at mass, place her “in a set as far above us common stiffs as lies between her and the angels.”

Bill Williams explored this region of Arizona where a great mountain rises more than 12,000 feet high, “so they say.”  At this altitude and at this time of year, snow lies on the ground and Hayes complains, “my light underwear is insufficient to keep me warm.”

But the town should heat up pretty soon when payday arrives.  Checks are cashed at the saloon, “and every man must show his appreciation by spending most of his pay there.”

November 20, 1897

Temperatures are below zero most of the time now, but Hayes has outdoor work at the mill driving a horse, “hauling slabs from the conveyor to the lath mill and box factory,” and has acclimated to the cold.  He sleeps in a “ram pasture bunk house,” crowded in with “Cotty and Irish and Sam and Jerry and so many more.”  Some of the men are well educated, smart enough anyway to play a friendly game of cards at night in the bunkhouse away from the sharp Arizona gamblers who trained in the boomtowns of Tombstone, Jerome, Globe, and Bisbee.

December 2, 1897

Hayes moves to a small cabin with “a couple of pals,” and a foot of snow outside.  One of the pals recounts his companionship with William Henry McCarty who died in New Mexico sixteen years previously.  According to the friend, McCarty, better known as “Billy the Kid”, was, “a quiet unassuming young man who minded his business and was the last man on earth one would consider a super killer.”

When the company hires a man for ten hours a day, seven days a week, this means ten hours a day, seven days a week actually hauling slabs.  A driver cares for his horse on his own time.  Tending a horse late into the night suits Hayes; nothing else to do other than saloons, gambling houses, and “a bagnio or two for the lustful lumberjacks.”  He wonders where these girls come from to do this work in these remote forsaken places.

December 13, 1897

In the increasingly cold weather, a railroad tunnel on the Santa Fe line east of Williams has collapsed.  The rail line pays a dollar an hour to any man willing to risk dangerous work clearing the tunnel; four have died so far.

Now it is Hayes’ turn to advise a gambler:  Ed Abbot, “a professional gambler and a member of Soapy Smith’s gang,” flat broke, bummed a dollar from Hayes and ran it to $6.50 at the roulette wheel.  Double down or buy some shoes?  Hayes advised the shoes and by swiping a pair of gloves while at the mercantile, Abbot has clothing enough for a job, “and he will actually work for a while, believe it or not.”

4.9 Colder in Williams

December 26, 1897

Working seven days a week at the mill includes Christmas day in temperatures far below zero with icicles “a foot long” hanging from the horse’s mouth.  But at least they put on a good feed:  “roast pork and trimmings and lots of other junk.”

Work didn’t take for Ed Abbot.  Hearing Abbot suffered a bad cut in the mill, Hayes hurries to check on him only to find the gambler grinning from ear to ear with a hand “full of bills of large size.”  Abbot crows he’s cleaned out “Dugan’s dump,” sent Dugan to the bar for more money, and won that too.  Now Abbot begs Hayes to come along for more, “you always bring me luck.  We’ll clean up on the whole town.”  At the end of a long night, Abbot holds hundreds of dollars.  No house anywhere in Williams will take another bet against his lucky streak.  With all that money in his pocket, Abbot hops a freight headed toward the Klondike in Alaska.  “Said Soapy was there somewhere and he would join him.”

January 20, 1898

So much time in one place makes Hayes restless.  He won’t gamble but he likes to hang around and watch the games especially immediately after payday.  The “main joint at Kelley’s” imports girls from Los Angeles to “maul the piano and drum up trade for the place.”  He says, one of the girls, Milly O’brien, “was nice to me, me being the only kid in the place.”  The continuation of that same paragraph calmly reports that a gambler dissatisfied that Milly would sell him no more than a single  $20 hour, “swatted her over the head with a gun, laying the scalp down over her eyes with blood running like water.”  Somebody must have intervened; the gambler is in jail at Flagstaff awaiting trial and transfer to the severe prison at Yuma.

February 10,1898

Though he describes the wedding cynically, Hayes seems pleased that Milly O’brien came immediately on happier days.  She wore, “Orange blossoms and crepe de chine and all the flimsy stuff women wear,” marrying Sandy Grogan of Flagstaff in “the society event of the year.”  The gambler got off easy too.  When asked, Milly told the judge her $20 an hour rate, to which he replied, “Don’t you think that is pretty steep?”  (Hayes’ quotes.).  Instead of the prison at Yuma, the judge gave the gambler a reprimand and a fine.  “Such is high society in Arizona.”

At some point Hayes had his diaries typed.  An entry on this date appears out of order.  In February he describes, “the strangest New Year I have ever heard of this time.”  First the train and mill whistles blowing started the coyotes harmonizing, then, “at the Cocnino Bar some hound slipped in and put a bit of limburger on top of the stove.”  Drunks were vomiting, the bar had to be closed, and there was talk of lynching.

February 20, 1898

The bitterly cold weather prevents hopping a train, but Hayes wants to quit this place and go visit his mother and sisters in Texas.  The railway charges $40 from San Francisco to El Paso with no reduction for boarding at Williams.  The mill pays $1.75 a day, with half subtracted for board.  Hayes won’t pay a railroad 53 days hard work when he can jump a freight for free and it’s too cold to ride, so he’ll just have to wait it out in Williams

Occasionally Hayes records an extremely dark entry into the diary.  Stuck in this high, cold Arizona mill town, he writes a long paragraph about the women he sees made prematurely old by their terrible lives of prostitution and of old “miners, prospectors, cowboys, and other adventurers,” reduced to menial labor to scrape together a few coins for liquor.  He concludes, “I wonder if I will be like this when I am old?  Better a thousand times I die first.”

March 2, 1898

Still stuck in Williams.  The mill pays monthly and March is five weeks this year, but “I will have that much more cash and the weather will be better.”

3. Portland to San Francisco

February 12, 2011

View This Segment on Google Maps The numbered titles below also link to this same map.

View All Segments Published to Date on Google Maps As the diary progresses, the entire journey becomes increasingly amazing.

View the First segment on Google maps You can view the numbered segments from first to most recent in the archive at right.

View the First Ten Segments Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

Requested photo places (see About Photo Requests):

– Myrtle point OR
– Eugene OR
– Portland OR, the zoo
– Astoria OR
– Cape Arago OR
– San Francisco CA, China town
Previous photo requests

Here and There diary Synopsis:

3.1 Bandon, Coquille, Myrtle Point

September 3, 1897

Knowing that he is about to begin wandering the world in earnest, Hayes bids fond farewell to the Davidsons and his cousin Ethel in Bandon. Elijah Davidson is “a typical western prospector and miner,” a close pal to Hayes who he credits with discovering Oregon Caves near the California border.

Parting the farm of Uncle Jim is not so cordial. Hayes and cousin Lewis had been instructing one of the mares in bucking, “and this gave [Uncle Jim] great cause for wrath.” Still, Aunt Cretia cried to see Hayes set off on the river steamer bound who knows where.

At that time, the end of the line for the steamer was Coquille. Hayes walked on to Myrtle Point, sleeping in a barn and milking a cow for a “small pick-me-up.”

3.2 Natural vs. Human World

September 5, 1897

The road from Myrtle Point to Camas Valley winds 33 miles through the southern Cascade Mountains.  Hayes walked that far before catching a stage the rest of the way into Roseburg.

The ripe grain, luscious fruit, berries, golden leaves, fat cattle and sturdy sheep momentarily intoxicate the young traveler:  “It is a beautiful world, full of interest and zest for life…”  but this sentence ends, “… but one dares place confidence in none.”  Only by duping the other man first does one succeed in a world where all others are corrupt.

3.3 Riding the Rails to Eugene

September 6, 1897

Hayes has money to pay train fare, “but why waste good money on a railroad that cheats the public openly?”  When a rail yard bull accosts him, the lie comes readily:  Hayes claims he’s a University student lost his way.  The “whiskered chap” bought the story failing to note Hayes’ hands blackened from hanging onto the rods.

The natural world continues to delight him:  “There are few fairer scenes than Western Oregon in autumn.”

3.4 Longing for the Sea at Portland

September 8, 1897

Cities do not delight him:  “Portland is a seedy place.”  But a fair is on where he marvels at the produce of Oregon and Portland has a zoo with “deer, elk, cougars, bears, coyotes, and some smaller animals,” that fascinate him for many hours.

Besides the zoo, he hangs around the wharves noting the “peculiar garb of the men,” listening to their “strange oaths,” and to the “none too gentle orders from the officers” Portland is an important stop in a worldwide sea trading network connecting Australia, China and  Japan to North and South America and then to Europe around Cape Horn.  Hayes says, “I long to go with them, but it is not the time.”

One can understand this hesitation from a nineteen-year-old boy.  He cannot fail the obvious assessment:  “to say the least, these men are a degraded lot.”  Their scant pay for long months at sea buys perhaps a week’s riot in the “saloons, dance halls, and variety theatres,” then it’s back to cold lonely months at sea looking forward to another dance hall in some strange faraway town.  The life does not attract him, but how else is a man without money to see the wide world?

3.5  Down the Columbia to Astoria

September 12, 1897

Hayes turns down a job in a Portland sawmill working 10 hours a day for $1.25 and pays $2.50 “steerage passage” to San Francisco instead.  “Steerage” refers to the control lines of the ship but it might as well be the word for cattle.  Hayes says, “Our quarters are execrable.”

But the country along the banks of the Columbia River separating Oregon and Washington is beautiful:  green hills, tall trees, salmon fisheries, lumber camps, canneries, and lush pastures.

September 14,1897

In the drizzle at Astoria, the ship takes on a few more passengers.  The residents are mostly hardy Swedes and Finns, but also Chinese who wear queues and “conventional Oriental garb.”

3.6 Off Cape Arago

September 15, 1897

The seas are not rough and most passengers recover from the initial seasickness rapidly, nevertheless the steerage decks are nearly unbearable with “odors and vermin.”  On deck for the fresher air, Hayes spots Cape Arago near where he lived at Bandon as a younger boy.  “Somehow it made me a little homesick.”  But a clear wind is rising, and he and a buddy Marshall “look forward with interest to the big town.”

3.7 “A city is an awful place”

September 18, 1897

Hayes and Marshal enjoy touring the city: animals and pretty flowers in the park, Chinatown, and the waterfront – except the Barbary Coast where “being inexperienced country boys we might lose what little change we have.”

Gigantic horses drawing drays and trucks know how to step carefully over streets paved with large treacherous stones.  Their drivers are more humane than teamsters with oxen but no less profane.  A man with pride can find work but the streets are “filled with men begging,” and lined with more saloons than shops, every dive packed full with drunken men.

“For one who has always lived in the country a city is an awful place.”  Marshal and Hayes want agricultural work in the clean air of the county away from this foreign place.  For 25¢ they can ride east sitting up to Stockton in the rich Central Valley.

Lessons Learned Early

February 5, 2011

View This Path on Google Maps Clicking any of the numbered titles below will take you to the same map.

View All Paths Published to Date on Google Maps As the diary progresses, the entire journey becomes increasingly amazing.

View the First Ten Paths Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

Requested photo places (see About Photo Requests):

– Sacramento, CA
– The Dock at Bandon, OR
– Mouth of the Coquille River, OR

Here and There diary Synopsis:

2.1  Kindness at Sacramento

December 1892

On the train to Sacramento, other passengers saw a fifteen-year-old boy, who looked even younger, traveling alone. Many shared food with him, so he was able to hoard his resources arriving in Sacramento with $1.65.

Upon arrival, some of the most down-and-out residents of the city recognized a boy adrift and responded with kindness as when a gambler handed him a dollar. Country life in Texas and Oregon had never introduced Hayes to a “fallen women.” They appeared to Hayes “the most beautiful girls I had ever seen,” and so many of them, “sitting at their casement windows, beckoning to passers-by.” To Hayes, obviously alone in the world, they always offered a coin, some food, or even a place to sleep. From these “waifs in the world,” the gambler, the prostitutes, Hayes learned that those with the least are often the most generous with what little they have.

2.2 A Walk Up to Marysville


Walking was a common mode of transportation in these days before the automobile. Still, 52 miles up to see the nearest town must have been a strenuous jaunt. Soon though, “the tutelage of more experienced wayfarers,” instructed Hayes in jumping trains. He rode the rails throughout the American west for years – as long as his conscience would allow.

2.3 Four Rough Years: Mining, Lumber Camps, Ranching


The diary compresses events of the early years of the 1890’s. He mentions working at mining, lumber camps, and ranches and speaks of staying with uncles for a time without saying where. His first job was cooking in a lumber camp for which he was not paid. The owner explained, “You are a minor, and all contracts are null and void.” He fell through a gap in a dock at Bandon, Oregon requiring two years to recover from his injuries. This brief gloss sums up the half decade

He does, however, record the lesson life taught him in these rough years: “The prizes of this life were to those who took them.” Those who wronged him, “were special objects to wreak vengeance upon.” Eventually, wronged or not, he determined that a smart man in an unjust world must take all he can by whatever means.

Perhaps the short paragraph covering these years indicates that the older author writing this portion of the diary was less than proud of the actions of his younger self.

2.4 Between Coos Bay and the Mouth of the Coquille River


At eighteen, Hayes meets a nice girl, two actually, one a cousin he “loved as a sister.” Apparently their influence elicited some self-reflection; in the same paragraph he mentions the girls, he says, “I began to realize I was wrong… [and] I turned from the worst of my evil life.”

Working the entire summer of 1897 at his uncle’s ranch pays $65; the crops are good but there is no market. Hayes describes the men of his father’s family as “high strung, quarrelsome, and somewhat tight in money matters.” They have some virtues: “they all worked hard, paid their debts and kept out of jail.” But this “fair record” doesn’t prevent Hayes from quarrels and departure at the end of the summer. From his uncles he learns another lesson: “in a quarrel someone must give in in the end” – so it is best to avoid conflict with those who love controversy.

During these years Hayes also tried his hand at trapping along the “desolate coast” of southern Oregon. But the blood and broken bones of these innocent animals turned him from making a living this way.

This completes Hayes’ recollections of his earliest years. From September 3, 1897 his diary continues with dated entries written as the remarkable events of his life unfold.