I had an enjoyable day on Saturday at the Sharlot Hall Folk Arts Festival in Prescott. I participated in the Gold Panning area by telling historical stories and singing songs about the early days of Arizona's settlement. We were fortunate that Jack Light, an expert mining geologist, led the gold panning activities. We can't say for sure, but it looked like a lot of children went home with packets of gold dust.
I sang one of my songs, "The Hassayamper Song" that pays tribute to the men (Pauline Weaver, Joseph Walker, and Jack Swilling) who led the first two parties of pioneers and prospectors up the Hassayampa River in 1863 in search of gold. Pauline Weaver led a small group of men, including Henry Wickenburg and Abraham Peeples, north from Yuma along the Colorado River, east along Bill Williams River and Date Creek. It was there that they discovered the rich placer gold deposits at Rich Hill, and along Antelope and Weaver Creeks.
It was especially appropriate that I sang "The Hassayamper Song" since Pauline Weaver's gravesite is located at the north entrance to the Sharlot Hall grounds. The plaque on his granite boulder headstone reads as follows: