Dr. Rudd and His Family by George H. Crosby Jr.

Right up against the Missouri line so that the people are as much Missourians as
Arkansawyers and with but one county lying to the west of it lies Carroll
county, Arkansas. That county has supplied a great many Arizonans. It is not a
very large county and it has not so very many people in it, but what there are
of them seem to like to emigrate to Arizona. Let me see: There is Judge Henry D.
Ross, who has stayed on our supreme bench from the beginning of statehood to the
present time and has four more years to serve; there is T. G. Norris, who
started his Arizona career with a few preliminary months in St. Johns, and then
went first to Flagstaff and then to Prescott to have a long career as one of the
state’s leading attorneys and business men; and Judge J. E Jones of Flagstaff.
who used to be so hard to beat on a criminal defense with a jury, and T. S.
Bunch and his brother Con, and it was right around that county if not in it that
the Hulsey family came from, and finally there is Attorney Ed Ferguson of
Holbrook trooping along years and years after the rest.

I have been hunting for the source of things in preparing this article, and I
find that Con Bunch ran away from home and normal school to come out here with
or to the family of Dr. Rudd, that his brother Tom came to join him and Norris,
a brother-in-law of Tom’s, to join them, so that Dr. Rudd brought the whole
emigration on. I expect if I dug down a little farther to sources I could find
some connection with Hulseys, the Stones and to Ed Ferguson.

Well, anyway, Rudd started it away back inn 1876–three years before there was
any Apache county and when only Yavapai, Maricopa, Mohave, Pima, Yuma and
Pinal–the latter only a yearling–were in existence, and when there were only
about 22,000 people in all Arizona, and when there wasn’t a foot of railroad in
all the territory, and when old Cochise was busy scalping everybody he could get
hold of and hadn’t got any county named for him yet, and when the Vulture mine
was looked on as about the only real thing in Arizona; and I have often wondered
how a busy doctor who used to be kept going day and night on his horse, with his
pill packets behind him, ever quit Carroll county and came off out here and
located on Rudd creek, but he did. Not only that, but it started the contagion
that brought the others along.

When he had been here three years, the legislature got busy and took its second
whack of Yavapai county and made Apache, and two years after that when the new
county wanted a district attorney it could not find one who had studied law, so
it took one who would study law, and elected Doc, and he got the newly revised
statutes of 1877, an abbreviated copy of Blackstone and a form book and went to
work, and he served four years, and though he was nearing the 50 year mark when
he began to read law, he made a pretty fair lawyer. Then he served one term
under appointment of Governor Tritle as county judge. He never held other public
office here and from 1887 on, quietly practiced part medicine and part law at
Springerville until his death 27 years later.

Some time before the Civil war broke out, Doctor had married Elizabeth Mann, and
she at nearly 90 years of age is one of the real old lovely pioneers, and lives
in the Springerville home that the family first bought and moved into in the
fall of 1886. They had a large family–had 12 of them–and 11 grew to maturity.
I have known them all. Had the children been a prolific as the old stock there
would have been enough Rudd descendants to populate a city by now. But the
children–I can see them as they looked 35 years ago (excepting Mrs. Colter who
moved away) so well that I could draw a picture of them if I were an artist.
Many people say they are afraid to have big families now–that they can not
educate them, but the Rudd family and our family were the two biggest families
of old Springerville days and they got about the best educations of any
of them. All of the Rudds got a pretty fair education, if they would take it;
anyway, I have watched it always and the big families get on just as well, and
lots of the time better than the little ones. It was so with the Rudds.

Well, about the Rudds, here is that family roster: Alex, the old, old time
constable at Glendale, who still holds the job; Nannie, Mrs. J. D. Murray,
mother of Claud and the rest; Davis, who was too bashful to look at girls very
long let alone marry one; Rosa, whose son would have been governor if ? got
about 300 more votes; Charlie, who is now a deputy ? down in Yavapai county;
Emma, who married W. A. McGinnis, a very brilliant teacher, back in 1889; Virgie
Williams, who is now back home living with her mother; Olney, who married a Miss
Woods, one of the best teachers of early Springerville days, and now of
California; Ida ,who got so busy teaching school that she never did get a
husband; Billie, who married one of the most talented and likable women in
Flagstaff, and is deputy sheriff here; and Katherine (Kitty) Rennals [Randles]
of Albuquerque, whose husband stands high in the forest service.

Doctor and my Grandpa Brown were good friends and grandpa had a great proclivity
for joking. Doctor (just as a friend) went to see grandpa when he was dying at
mother’s home in Eagar. As doctor came to the door, the dying man looked him
intently in the eye. Doctor thought how he had known him for 19 years and would
see him no more, and he too looked intently. Then grandpa scanned the doctor
over–mouth and chin, neck, collar and tie, coat and vest and watch chain, hand
and cane and trousers, when discovering the doctor had on a new par of shoes,
and knowing it was his last chance for fun, he asked, “Well, doctor, did you pay
for those shoes or get them on credit?”

The last act of an old friend for me occurred at the election of 1914. Doctor
was all ready to leave for Glendale, where he spent his last winters, when, one
night in October, he woke up and thought, “Here is my grandson, Fred Colter,
running for state senator, Jack Hamblin, whom I have known for 35 years, running
for sheriff, and George Crosby, who came up from a mail cart and wants to be
judge. What if one is beat for my vote?” He stayed a month more to vote.

2 thoughts on “Dr. Rudd and His Family by George H. Crosby Jr.

  1. A wealth of information here! And some good-natured Arizona remembrances of bygone days. Thank you again, Brandon!
    (By the way, my Great-grandmother Emma Rudd married Attorney Bernard Joseph McGinnis who Emma apparently met while both of them were teaching in St Johns, and where B J McGinnis was also the school Principal. I noticed that B J McGinnis, while serving his military obligation, had also been posted for a time to Fort Verde, Arizona. So there might have been other connections to the Rudd family from his Fort Verde days as well.)


    1. You could be right about B. J. McGinnis connecting with the Rudds at Fort (aka Camp) Verde. Dr. Rudd’s third oldest son, Charles Benjamin Rudd, married Edna Browning Price there in 1915. Charles’ son (and future congressman) Eldon Dean Rudd was born at Camp Verde in 1920.


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