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The Indians of The Big Bend Country

Description: This is a research paper written by Nancy Edwards for an American History Class at Marfa High School in April 1968. The paper discusses the various tribes in west Texas and how they lived, artifacts found in pueblos and caves, historical descriptions of early Spanish interactions with the tribes, and relationships between the tribes. It covers popular legends of some tribes and legends surrounding the Marfa Lights.
Date: April 1968
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

My Land, My Heritage, My Hope

Description: Paper submitted to the Junior Historical Society state writing contest held by the Texas State Historical Society, discussing historical landmarks, landscape, and people of Marfa. This written speech accompanied photographic slides (noted in the text with slide numbers).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Outskirts of Marfa]

Description: Photograph of the town of Marfa taken from a distance. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Marfa's twenty-five hundred citizens are a blend of three ethnic groups" (p. 13).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Three students in sweatshirts]

Description: Photograph of three unidentified male Marfa students wearing hooded sweatshirts and sweatpants. Two of the students' sweatshirts have logos with the text "Marfa Shorthorns." The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Besides football, basketball, tennis, and golf wins, several members of the track team have gone on to higher competition" (p. 13).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Students playing in an outdoor athletic field]

Description: Photograph of an outdoor athletic field, taken from across a Marfa street. Four unidentified Marfa High School students are practicing tennis. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Besides football, basketball, tennis, and golf wins, several members of the track team have gone on to higher competition" (p. 13).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Students with instruments]

Description: Photograph of five Marfa High School students posing together in front of soundproofed walls; three in the front and two in the back. They are identified from left to right as: Beverly Webb (holding a sheaf of papers), Mark Covington (holding a euphonium), Marfa Gene LaLanne (holding a saxaphone), Delma Gonzales (holding papers or another instrument) and Gene Dempsey (holding a trumpet). The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The band members work many extra hours in perfecting their marching and concert material for contests" (p. 13).
Date: Autumn 1968
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Hunter Gymnasium at Marfa High School]

Description: Photograph of several unidentified students gathering near the Hunter Gymnasium at Marfa High School. There is a flag pole with the American flag and another flag in front of the building. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The students themselves take pride in their town by winning awards in nearly all activities. Junior Historians are creating a museum to honor their founders" (pp. 12-13).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Marfa billboard]

Description: Photograph of a billboard at the side of the road welcoming golfers to Marfa, Texas. The billboard has an image with a golfer, golf cart, and hold, with the text "Welcome to Marfa. Relax & Play the Highest Golf Course in Texas (Elevation 4882 Ft.), Bent Greens, Bermuda Fairways. Entrance to Big Bend National Park." A smaller sign underneath says "July 4-14, 1967." The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The golf course is one of the best in the state and encourages young golfers to pursue their interests" (p. 12).
Date: 1969~
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Coffield Park]

Description: Photograph of the swimming pool and surrounding areas of Coffield Park, in Marfa, Texas. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Marfa citizens are very proud of their youth and realize that young people are the future of our country. Marfa citizens provide several facilities for warm weather enjoyment. The Marfa Lions Club takes care of the public pool during the summer. Coffield park provides a baseball diamond for Little Leagers" (p. 12).
Date: 1968
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Longhorn cattle in Big Bend]

Description: Photograph of three longhorns in Big Bend ranch, standing in a fenced area in front of a desert area with a mountain in the background. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "His [Don Milton Faver's] entire herd of three hundred cattle was run off by the Indians, leaving him with only thirty or forty calves which were in a corral. From this meager beginning, he built a second herd of ten to twenty thousand" (p. 6).
Date: 1969~
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Ranch home in Big Bend]

Description: Photograph of the front of the Cibolo ranch home in Presidio, surrounded by desert trees and landscape. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The first Anglo-American rancher in the Big Bend was Don Milton Faver. He established three ranch headquarters when he came in 1857. His first cattle were Mexican longhorns which he branded with a 'lazy F' on the left hip " (pp. 5-6).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Windmill and ruins in Big Bend]

Description: Photograph of a windmill on top of a small fort in Big Bend. Various sparse bushes surround it and a rocky hillside is to the right of the fort. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The presence of a United States Army fort in the Big Bend encouraged more settlers to ranch" (p. 5).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Craggy desert landscape in Big Bend]

Description: Photograph of a rocky desert landscape in Big Bend near Marfa, Texas. The landscape has sparse grasses and weeds; two hilltops are visible in the top right corner of the image. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "[John W.] Spencer tried horse and cattle raising, but because of Indians, failed" (p. 4).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Fort Leaton ruins in Big Bend]

Description: Photograph of a stone or adobe building that is part of the ruins of Fort Leaton ("El Fortin"), near Rio Grande, Texas. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Ben Leaton sold guns and ammunition to the Indians to kill the immigrants on the wagon trains. He then gave aid and shelter to the same immigrants at 'El Fortin.' He was called the 'Noble Desperado'" (p. 4).
Date: 1968
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Additional ruins of Presidio structure]

Description: Photograph of Fort Leaton ruins in the Big Bend desert, near Presidio, Texas. Several wood support beams of varying lengths support the wall structure. A stone marker near the photograph's left quadrant describes the structure. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The mission was successful, and Christianized many of the tribes until the Padres were called back from this wilderness in the eighteenth century" (pp. 3-4).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Tree in Presidio landscape]

Description: Photograph of a tree and bushes in Presidio desert. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "El Apostol Santiago built, with Indian labor, a mission on the north side of the Rio Grande in 1684" (p. 3).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Barren Big Bend desert landscape]

Description: Pphotograph of a barren Big Bend crater. Several edges of the crater contain sparse tufts of grasslands and a mountain range is visible in the far distance. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "These Indians were primarily farmers, whose fields lined the banks of the now dry rivers and creeks. The sites of the Jumano pueblos are still a source of artifacts" (p. 3).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Canine artifact]

Description: Photograph of an oval, white soapstone Indian artifact carved with the shape of a small canine. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The first tribe of Indians to be recorded were called the 'Basketmakers.' They quickly faded into the background with the coming of the Jumanos" (pp. 2-3).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Desert flowers]

Description: Photograph of yellow and purple wildflowers in the desert soil near Marfa, Texas. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Thorns are not the only dangers, as shown by these plants -- senecio and loco -- which are highly poisonous to livestock" (p. 2).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Purple desert flowers]

Description: Photograph of several bluebonnet plants (Lupinus havardii) in the desert near Marfa, Texas. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Bluebonnets, our State flower, and sage bloom early in the year-round warmth in the Big Bend Park on the Rio Grande" (p. 2).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Collection of fossils and bones in Big Bend]

Description: Photograph of rocks and mammoth fossils embedded in the soil next to tree roots. A pickaxe and large hole are visible near the top of the image. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "This beast watered at a lake which was once in the Big Bend. His feet were caught in the sticky mud, and the mammoth, unable to move, was preserved" (p. 2).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library

[Indian cave paintings in Marfa]

Description: Photograph of a cave painting containing eight vertical stripes on the wall, which may depict human bodies. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: “The Great Comanche War Trail led through Brewster County and into Mexico. Apache and Comanche warriors raided and plundered each other. Their paintings tell the story of their life in a land which defied them" (p. 3).
Date: 1969
Creator: Edwards, Nancy
Partner: Marfa Public Library