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John Clum? How So? Tombstone Tips Issue 35
February 06, 2020
Insider Info Newsletter
February 2020 - Issue #35
~ ~ John Clum
~ ~ January Events/Insider Update Review
~ ~ The Latest at Tombstone Travel Tips
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New York State Town: Birthplace of Clum
#1 - John Philip Clum: Some Tombstone Firsts!
~ ~ Born in upstate NY Sept. 1, 1851. He eventually became a well-known resident of Tombstone.
~ ~ He was its 1st voted Mayor & the 1st Editor of the iconic Tombstone Epitaph.
~ ~ Also got involved in lots more in town. Let's see how John P. Clum got there - his story...
Epitaph Just Moved Out of a Tent
#2 - Educated Upbringing Serves Him Well
John Clum 1870 - Age 19, Just Before Moving West~ ~ Clum continued his religious interest there, joining Santa Fe's Presbyterian congregation. His focus was: becoming involved. He served as a delegate to the church General Assembly.
~ ~ He stayed in New Mexico until he was recommended to an appointment as Apache Agent in Arizona. Assigned to San Carlos Reservation, arriving Aug. 8, 1874.
From the Arizona Weekly Citizen - Sat., July 4, 1874 - Pg. 2
#3 - At the Reservation/Agency
~ ~ John Clum used techniques not especially popular with the government. He learned Apache culture, trying to understand their motivations. So he organized an Apache Police Force to enforce reservation problem solving. He brought in self-government methods.
~ ~ The reservation location is along the Gila River. A good consistently free-flowing Chihuahuan Desert waterway in that area. Water availability was an approach for Apaches to reinvent themselves. He taught them agriculture & farming. He also employed building laborers & began children's schools.
John Clum, Front Right - With His Apache Police Force
~ ~ He received accolades from many for his Agent work. Most judged him as doing an excellent job. Especially as compared with his predecessor.
From the Daily New Mexican - Fri., May 14, 1875's Front Page
~ ~ John lived on the reservation, but still traveled around. While there he studied law. He met Mary Ware, whom he asked to marry. Late November 1876, he went to Delaware for his wedding to Mollie (nickname). They lived together at San Carlos.
~ ~ In the Spring of 1877, he had a contentious relationship with General Kautz. As U.S. Adjutant General of the Military Division of the Pacific & California, he made detrimental accusations toward Clum's San Carlos Apache policies. Disgruntled, John resigned by June. But their argumentation continued.
John Clum with Diablo & Eskiminzim - 1875 at San Carlos Agency
#4 - Law & Florence
~ ~ John & Mollie moved to Florence, Arizona. About 75 miles Northwest of Tucson. He continued law studies with Judge H.B. Summers, passed the bar, practiced in Pinal District Court.
~ ~ In 1878 they built a home there, 180 N. Granite St., still there today! John kept the offices of his newspaper there. Nov. 1877 he'd purchased the Arizona Citizen, moving it from Tucson. By Dec. he no longer practiced law, instead was solely a newspaper man.
John Clum House: c. 1878 - Florence Arizona
~ ~ But he found it better to return the Citizen to Tucson. He did so, moving there in late 1878. He changed the format to a daily. But by early Feb. 1880, he sold the Arizona Citizen. Still involved, he helped get Tucson's Republican Party off the ground. Then started running for offices. In April he moved his wife & son Woodworth to Tombstone.
John & Mollie Clum
#5 - Plans for Tombstone Arizona
~ ~ John Clum intended to bring a newspaper to town. The 1st Weekly Tombstone Epitaph was issued May 1, 1880. The office was a canvas tent on Fremont, between 3rd & 4th. By July he added a Daily Epitaph. He'd just been appointed Postmaster.
~ ~ On Dec. 11 Mollie delivered a baby girl, Bessie. But it took a toll, post-birth complications left John a widower on Dec. 18. His parents, living in Washington D.C., took in the kids. Left John to devote himself to work.
From the Weekly Republican ("Phenix") - Fri., Dec. 24, 1880 - Pg 4
~ ~ January 1881 Tombstone's 1st election chose John P. Clum as Mayor. Soon a solid building (photo above) took the place of the Epitaph's canvas office.
~ ~ Continuing community involvement, Clum wasn't without controversy, including passing Ordinance 9. The Epitaph backed the Earps in the OK Corral Gunfight, but he suspended Virgil. John, + others, received life-threatening letters. Then on Dec. 14, 1881 Clum was on a Stagecoach when it was attacked.
~ ~ Clum was away back East for the children. His infant daughter died. But he lost his post office position in June 1882. He remarried while in D.C. in Feb. 1883. In Feb. 1885 again he's Postmaster, but resigned (under pressure?) that autumn. In Feb. 1886 the Anti-Chinese League targeted him for boycott. By March he's the City Recorder.
~ ~ Later that year, he's in San Bernardino California. He's done with Tombstone life!
#6 - Moving On: Max Activity!
~ ~ Clum stays in San Bernardino awhile, working Real Estate & at a newspaper. But about 1890 went East for a Postal Service Federal position. Nov. 1897 he's appointed "Chief Clerk" of a division just under the Chief Inspector. In early 1893 he also began lecture touring, using stereoptic videos.
~ ~ April 1898 he's sent to Skagway Alaska to establish the postal service there. He traveled throughout Alaska gold-rush towns.
John P. Clum: On The Mule - 1898
~ ~ In 1900 he's in Nome. Met up with friend Wyatt Earp there. Controversy met him again in June 1903. With gold mining interests, conflicts with his position arose.
L to R: B.W. Kilburn, N.H. Littleton, P.O. Inspector James Davis,
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