CHAPTER THREE: ALL OTHER STRUCTURES
A. Cowboy House
Little is known about the origins and development of the cowboy house. Because of its name, it is reasonable to assume that part or all of it was once used by ranch hands. In later years it was used mostly as guest quarters.
The cowboy house is an ell-shaped structure, the base of the ell running east and west. The roof is a pitched gable roof over each section of the ell. There is a covered porch that runs on the inside of the ell. The long outside of the ell is fifty-five feet, and the short outside is twenty-eight feet six inches. The north end is twelve feet three inches. The long inside of the ell is forty feet five inches, and the short inside measures sixteen feet three inches. The porch is five 5 feet wide. 
The records of the Assessor's Office of Cochise County, Arizona, described the structure in 1966 as a single frame dwelling, having a stone foundation, gable roof, roofing composed of prepared roll, floors containing wood joists, softwood flooring, and a wallboard interior finish.  In addition to the covered porch, the building consisted of a living room (with a stone fireplace), kitchen (with a pantry), two bedrooms, and one bath. 
Mrs. Ethel Erickson said that her husband Ben told her that at one time the cowboy house consisted of two sections fused together to form the structure that exists today. Ben had owned one of these sections on his ranch which he had homesteaded years ago. The other section was part of the Erickson ranch. Ben's structure was brought to Faraway to join the other structure thus forming the ell. 
In Neil Erickson's diary of March 1930, he made several references to "Ben's cabin." There is no mistake that he was referring to a structure at Faraway. Thus, in one entry he said, "I & Ed worked on Ben's cabin lining the South room with Celotex." In another entry he reported, "I work home on the cabin [i.e., Ben's] South end." In still a third entry to his diary Neil wrote, "I finished Cilotexing cabin." Finally, he wrote "Ed & I worked on cabin in forenoon and part of afternoon." 
It is possible that this was the time when the two structures were joined. A photograph taken recently of Neil's office/garage from a point looking northwest reveals part of the north section of the cowboy house. A similar view of the office/garage taken just before 1930 from approximately the same angle showed no cowboy house in sight. This may mean that the two separate sections of the cowboy house had not yet been joined. 
Judging from the foundation's appearance, it would seem that the cowboy house consisted of two distinct and separate sections. The long side of the ell rests on a stone foundation held together with mortar. The section that forms the base of the ell rests on the ground or at best on a narrow strip of mortar. Moreover, it is also obvious that the existing entry hall was once an open area that is now enclosed. It is likely that the two structures were joined at this point.
The records of the Assessor's Office of Cochise County gave the date of construction of the cowboy house as 1921, and the source for this information was the owner, meaning Lillian.  It may be that this date was the age of that part of the structure which had already been at the Erickson ranch before it was joined to Ben's cabin.
B. Storage Shed
This structure is described in the National Register Nomination Form as a
The structure appears to have been built in the 1930s or 1940s during the period when Faraway Ranch was enjoying expansion as a guest ranch. As in the case of many of the small structures at Faraway there is no specific evidence concerning the history of this shed. True, the Erickson-Riggs Collection provides numerous references to this or that shed, but the information is so vague as to make it almost impossible to associate it with buildings existing today. Moreover, over the years many of these structures were either torn down, replaced, rebuilt, or relocated, as was so often the practice, depending upon the needs of the ranch. It is therefore difficult to rely on any specific written record for evidence regarding buildings of this nature.
Old photographs prove to be better evidence than the written record for this purpose, but they too have their shortcomings. Photographs reveal several small buildings, some of which may have been sheds, but they have long since disappeared, at least from their original locations. Other photographs contain a heavy cluster of trees in the area west of the Main House, so that if there is a structure that might be the shed in question, it is well-hidden.
C. Barn and Tool Shed
It is very likely that Neil had some sort of barn to shelter his horses from the very early days of his ranch. In her work, "Westward Into the Sun," Lillian spoke of a "saddle room."  This reference had to be a structure set apart from the Main House. It is, however, very unlikely that the saddle room or any other structure representing a barn would be the same as the existing one. The barn that exists today is of much later vintage. Perhaps the best evidence to offer in support of this statement is a photograph of what is undoubtedly the existing building and the adjoining corral taken several years ago. It bears the following caption: "New Faraway Corrals and Shed around 1928" (Illustration No. 25). This period was during the time that Faraway Ranch was undergoing an extensive face-lifting.
An entry in Neil's diary for 1929 stated, "[I] cleaned up the grain and saddle room, put it in good shape."  References to a grain room meant the area where the feed was kept. This room and/or saddle room had to be a part of the barn. In October 1935 Neil "tore out the shelving in the grain room and put it in so it will stay put."  The grain room must have been the same room referred to in an old floor plan, drawn to scale, as the "Feed" room. In addition to the feed room, this plan revealed three other rooms: tack room, stalls, and shop. 
In describing the barn as it looks today, the National Register Nomination Form noted that the original barn had an additional room constructed which nearly doubled its size. If this is so, this writer has found no evidence of this in the Erickson-Riggs Collection or elsewhere.
In 1962 an inventory was taken of the tack room, and the following items were listed: 8 western saddles, 1 English saddle, 1 side saddle, 8 bridles, 6 saddle blankets, 2 horse blankets, 10 No. 0 horse shoes, 9 No. 1 horse shoes, 11 No. 2 horse shoes, 9 No. 3 horse shoes, 1 horse shoeing kit consisting of 11 items, shoe nails, 2 currycombs, and 3 brushes. 
The National Register Nomination Form has described the existing barn and tool shed as follows:
D. Tool Shed
As with most other outbuildings at Faraway, little is known about this structure. No old photographs exist that might identify it. It is possible that this structure was built in the late 1920s or 1930s. In June 1935 Neil made two or three references to what could have been this structure, but the evidence is inconclusive. In one reference he said, "I fitted in the little window on the south end of tool room. [I] put on casings." Two days later, he wrote, "I cased in door to tool house," and three days later he added, "I fixed lock on door to the woodshed and tool room." 
The date of these diary entries would seem to coincide with the date that this structure may have been built, but, on the other hand, other similar structures may also have been built about this time, and Neil may have used one of them for a tool house or tool room.
The National Register Nomination Form has described the existing Tool Shed as follows:
E. Generator House
Nothing was found among the records to provide a clue as to when this small structure was built (Illustration No. 26). In all probability it was built in the 1930s when electricity was introduced to the ranch to take the place of gas carbide. The manner of construction suggests that it was built around the same time that the stone addition to the bunkhouse was made, that is, the mid-1930s.
The existing generator house has been described as:
Historical records are frequently vague in speaking about the garages at Faraway. There were in later years at least three structures that housed automobiles at Faraway: one was attached to the Stafford cabin, built in the 1940s; a second garage that served to house a single car while also serving as Neil's office was built in the early 1930s; and a third very large garage that served to house several cars, part of which was built before 1920. This section deals with the last mentioned structure. This structure and Neil's personal garage are sometimes confused.
A close examination of the fabric of this large garage reveals that at one time it consisted of two separate structures. The larger one, containing three stalls, was probably built in the 1930's as were most of the outbuildings of the period. It was part of the development that the Riggses undertook to expand their guest ranch. Such a large garage served to house the guests cars. When built it was located immediately to the northwest of the Main House but in front and parallel to the chicken house. There are several photographs of this structure, some showing it alone and others depicting it with other buildings around it, particularly the Main House (Illustration Nos. 27 and 28).
The structure's long axis stood east and west, the front facing south. A significant feature of the corrugated metal gable roof was its long overhang, which may have extended three or four feet. Today's roof has lost this feature, the overhang being considerably less. This is an indication that the structure underwent changes after it was built.
The small shed, which is now attached to the north side of the larger structure, may date from well before 1920 and was probably built during the first decade of the 1900s. There is an old photograph taken around 1908 that reveals the rooftop of a structure that was similar in size and shape to the existing shed (Illustration No. 4). There is also another photograph taken about 1920 that provides a better view of this structure (Illustration No. 29). The shed was on approximately the same site as the large garage that followed it, and its axis also stood east and west. The shed was where the present generator house is and approximately where the large garage now stands.
In the late 1920s the Riggses probably moved the shed to another location in order to make way for a new large garage so that guests could have easy access to their automobiles.
An entry in Neil's diary for February 1930 stated that he "worked all day putting shelves in back end of garage."  He was probably speaking of the big garage. In 1936 Neil noted that he "put hangers on garage doors" and that he "had to go to Willcox for more." He finally "finished putting up hangers assisted by Mr. Spencer." The following day he "made two doors, and hung one on South end" also assisted by Mr. Spencer. Still the next day he "hung and completed the other door."  These references to more than one door can only mean that they were intended for the large garage since the small garage only had one door. This may mean that the large garage had been recently relocated to its present site and that it was now undergoing some remodeling, although it is also possible that it was relocated before this time. Unfortunately, the evidence is inconclusive.
In one entry to his September 1936 diary Neil wrote that "Dave & I drove to Willcox for material . . . to rebuild the old Shed, Garage so called. Rec'd. only a part. The iron from El Paso had not come." A second entry written the following day noted that "Mr. Spencer & I tore the iron off the old shed in forenoon, and started to remodel the frame. . . We continued the work, and kept no memorandum, but the work was carried forward, the walls and roof completed." 
It is obvious from these statements that extensive work was being done to this structure, and one can safely conclude that first of all, the work was some kind of remodeling or repair and not the construction of an entirely new structure, and secondly, that the work was being performed on a fairly large structure. It is therefore fair to say that all this work in 1936 was probably on the large garage, or the so-called garage/storage building.
This structure has been described as it appears today as follows:
Before Neil was reassigned to Flagstaff his office had been in the Main House. During his absence from the ranch this office was converted to other uses to accommodate the ever-growing guest ranch business. When he returned to Faraway after retirement, he again sought a place for his office, one that was conveniently located. The result was the construction of the so-called office-garage. Half of the building served as an office, the other half garaged his car.
The exact date of construction of this structure is unknown, but it was probably built around 1930. A lease entered into in January 1933, between Neil and his wife and Lillian and Ed Riggs, gave the latter couple the right to use the ranch freely with the exception of the "cabin and garage of the said Neil Erickson."  Neil reserved this facility for himself. Thus, the garage had been built before 1933 when this agreement was made. According to Murray Riggs, Neil built the garage.  Since the structure was to be used by Neil alone, it would seem logical for him to have given it his personal attention.
Although there are some references to work done on garages in the Erickson-Riggs Collection, one must not confuse Neil's garage with the others. There are three early photographs depicting the small garage. Two were taken at the same time. They show Neil at a workbench outside the east wall of his garage just beneath the window. In one picture the sliding garage door is open (Illustration No. 30). In the other, the door is shut. These photographs were probably taken in the early 1930s. The third photograph depicts the structure as being essentially the same as in the other pictures except that there is no workbench. This picture was also taken in the early 1930s. Incidentally, this illustration reveals part of the large garage in its old location, that is, to the northeast. Thus, at the time this picture was taken the large garage had yet to be relocated.
The National Register Nomination Form has described this structure as it looks today as follows:
H. Bunkhouse/Guest Quarters
As one of the more durable structures in the historic district, the bunkhouse, or guest quarters, developed with the needs of the ranch. It experienced extensive service as guest quarters and before that as a facility for ranch hands.
Records at the Assessor's Office of Cochise County provide two dates of construction for this structure one of which is crossed out. One date is 1910, the other, the one crossed out, is 1935. In spite of the apparent disagreement, there is some significance in both dates. The board and batten section of the bunkhouse originally was the third addition to the Stafford cabin, constructed by Hugh Stafford around 1910. Hence, the 1910 date in the Assessor's records is essentially correct. This frame structure was moved on log rollers to the present location sometime between 1925 and 1929, several years after Lillian purchased the Stafford property.  An aerial photograph of the Faraway Ranch taken around 1930 shows the roof of this rectangular structure on its existing site (Illustration No. 31).
Porches may have existed in the front and rear of this rectangular structure after it was moved. There were also two additions made to the house and possibly a third one. The first and possibly a second addition involved the enclosing of the rear, or south porch, an event that might have occurred in the late 1920s when the structure was used as a residence for a boys' private school.
After the students moved out, the building served as guest quarters. To meet the increased demands of Faraway Ranch a section, consisting largely of fieldstone, was added to the west side in 1935. During the month of May of that year there was considerable work on this structure. Neil, whose physical activities had slowed down because of his chronic asthma affliction, reported the daily progress of construction. On May 18 he said that the "boys [i.e., Mexican hired hands] and Mr. Williams hauled rocks all day for Rockhouse above the gates." There can be no mistake about his reference to "Rockhouse" nor to its location. He meant the addition to the bunkhouse. Several days later he recorded that the "carpenter Shaver and stone mason Moses and two Mexican boys worked all day." On May 30 he wrote "Rock men finished their work this afternoon and went home." Finally, he reported on the following day that "Mr. Shaver started to frame rafter after having set the plates today."  This last reference was perhaps to a new roof that replaced the old one on the whole structure.
Work on the stone addition as well as on the whole house did not end here. During June and July work went on in bathrooms, and in July the carpenter put in a "frame for the porch kitchen on Rock Cabin." 
A photograph taken in the late 1930s depicts the bunkhouse as it looked on the exterior after the stone addition was completed. It has not changed significantly since then (Illustration No. 32).
In 1965 the Assessor's records described the bunkhouse as a one-story, three-family dwelling, consisting of five rooms and made of frame and solid masonry. The foundation consisted of stone and the exterior walls were of frame wood, or composition siding, and rock. The gabled roof consisted of wood shingles and the floors were made of wood joists and softwood flooring. The interior walls consisted of wallboards and the bathroom walls of drywall. The structure had two baths, two shower stalls, two kitchen sinks, and one hot water heater. There was one open porch facing the north. 
I. Swimming Pool
The existing swimming pool that is located northeast of the Main House has been described as an "oval, home made structure . . . built of concrete and, except for the top foot or two, sunk into the ground, graduated in depth from the south end to the north. It is in a deteriorated and unusable condition." 
One must not confuse this swimming pool with the so-called swimming hole built near the dam just northwest of the Stafford cabin, a structure now almost gone and one that was built earlier than the pool. References in letters, diaries, and other records to such terms as "swimming pool," "swimming hole," "swimming tank," "dam swimming pool," etc., have led to confusion in identifying these structures.
As early as 1920 records revealed that some sort of swimming facility was available at Faraway Ranch. A letter to Hildegard and Lillian written that year by a friend anticipating a visit to the ranch that summer mentioned "It is getting hot and I think with pleasure of the swimming hole, hope it is in good condition when I come up, but if the old girl comes up again from Bisbee and puts her toe in it like she did before, I won't blame it from shriveling up right then."  In July 1922 Ed Riggs, who with Ben was taking care of Faraway Ranch, wrote to Lillian, then his fiance who was in California, "Yesterday we worked on the swimming hole taking those big rocks out and building up the wall on the south side where it was so low. Dug out all along and above the dam wall too so today I am going to haul the clay and tamp it in place."  In another letter written that same month to Lillian, Ed sadly reported, "Your dream about the dam swimming pool hasn't come true yet." 
A study of the above references to a swimming facility leads this writer to conclude that the facility referred to cannot be the swimming pool in question. References to the removal of "big rocks" and "building up the wall on the south side" in addition to the use of the word "dam" rule out this possibility. It may be that Lillian wanted improvements in the swimming hole at the dam and that Ed, at least at the time of his second letter, was unable to satisfy her wishes. Murray Riggs has stated that the swimming hole at the dam was built by his father, but this is not probable, because the 1920 letter to the Erickson sisters spoke of a swimming facility already in existence before that year. It is not likely that Ed was so romantically involved with Lillian and Faraway Ranch as early as this as to make him the builder of the swimming hole. However, as his letters of 1922 reveal, he may have had much to do with its improvement. 
After their marriage in 1923, improving facilities and making the ranch more attractive to the guests was uppermost in the minds of Lillian and Ed Riggs. A good swimming facility appeared to play a major role in attracting customers. Although in Flagstaff, working for the Forest Service, Neil wrote his daughter and son-in-law advising them that "The point you should look to is a good road into Bonita, from the nearest point in the road, from the valley, water in the house, good horses, and a swimming hole. The rest will come easy." 
One day in July 1929, Neil wrote in his diary, "about 3 o'clock all the young folks drove up to our ranch for a swim in the tank". On another day that same month he wrote, "Frank Stark came up for a swim and had a grand time in the tank for about an hour."  His reference to a "tank" in both cases might conceivably mean the open reservoir tank used for watering cattle, but this does not seem likely. In all probability, the swimming pool, the topic of this section, was installed sometime between 1925 and 1929 and by then had become quite popular with not only the guests but with the neighbors as well.
Murray Riggs said that his father built the swimming pool. He said that it was made of mixed concrete poured into rounded forms. The forms were only half the height of the pool, but they were doubled to form the desired height. The deepest part of the pool was six feet. The pool had a plug at the north end for cleaning--the water draining into the adjacent garden. It also had an overflow drain that permitted the excess water to drain in the garden. The pool was originally surrounded by a wooden deck three feet wide. In later years the wood deteriorated and the roots of surrounding trees and plants grew into the concrete. The pool also had springs at the north end that held a two-inch thick by twelve-inch wide diving board. 
A brochure published by the Willcox Chamber of Commerce in 1938 noted that the swimming pool at Faraway Ranch was in operation for the guests. The regular brochure printed by the ranch in the 1930s and 1940s also noted that the pool was supplied with fresh water from the mountain carried down through pipes. 
The existing windmill has been described as standing
A windmill was an extremely important facility on a ranch in this area. Neil had to consider the construction of a windmill soon after he settled in Bonita Canyon. In 1896 he made several entries in his diary referring to his windmill. In one, he said he took "down windmill on Mrs. Rhoda Riggs place," and the following day, he wrote that he "hauled home tower." On the third day he took pains to draw a plan of the tower, and several days later he worked on the tower, finally completing it. He then had to get help from his neighbors, including Stafford, to raise the tower in place. This was not the end of his work apparently for he still had to put up "sails" and improve the pump's horsepower. 
The windmill broke down frequently and Neil had to replace several parts.
In 1936 Ed purchased supplies which seemed to be intended for a windmill. The cost of these supplies ($216) was fairly high. Three years later more than $107 was spent on hardware to repair the windmill. 
It is difficult to say if more than one windmill existed in the area constituting the historical district or if indeed the references cited above were about the windmill in question. Two photographs in the Erickson-Riggs Collection, however, show aerial views of the ranch, taken as early as 1920, depicting a windmill on the existing site and on no other site in the general area (illustration Nos. 35 and 36).
In her brief memoir Hildegard wrote that when she was about five years old (which would have placed the time at around 1900) "because of the wind, the windmill had been working and working--going and going. Mother became worried about it and asked me to go down and turn it off. The windmill was about a quarter of mile below the house."  Her description of the distance of the windmill to the Main House appears to match the distance of the existing windmill to the house.
The Riggses continued to have trouble with the windmill in later years. One day in 1957, Lillian recorded that "one of those awful windy Arizona days. Damage so far as I know now . . . broke the windmill at the corral--in the same place it was broken before. . . . ."  There can be no mistake in this reference that Lillian was speaking of the existing windmill, the corral being nearby.
K. Tank (Reservoir)
The existing tank has been described as a "rectangular open air pond, retained above the grade of the floor of the valley, to the north, by a man-made three-sided embankment faced on the outside (to the north, west, and east) with large fieldstones or small boulders from the creek bed. It is at present dry, and its interior and top surfaces are covered with native grasses." 
The Ericksons and later the Riggs had several earthen reservoirs throughout their cattle ranch. Only one of these, the one in question, stood within the historic district. Several records ranging from 1938 to 1940 deal with three similar reservoirs, but nothing is said about the one under study, which may be an indication that the latter was no longer active by 1938. This may have been true because by that time the guest ranch business was in full swing at Faraway and the reservoir was too close to the Main House and guest cabins. Cattle may have been turned away from it to water at other reservoirs.
The first that one hears of an earthen reservoir on Erickson's ranch was in 1913. On a U.S. Forest Service form, Neil, who was a ranger at the time, described a structure consisting of a watering dam on land in the Chiricahua National Forest. He classified it under "Watering Places" and described it as a "Dam earth and rock 6 feet high and 200 feet long. . . . The dam forms a water tank 150 feet in diameter and 4 feet deep in center."  It is difficult to say whether this was the reservoir in question, but it was apparently on the Erickson property and at that time the ranch was not so extensive as to include other reservoirs. In much later years (1938-1940) similar Forest Service forms were filled out by Ed Riggs describing the other three reservoirs on the Faraway Ranch.
There are several early photographs depicting the earthen reservoir in question. One that is said to have been taken in the 1920s shows cattle watering at the tank (Illustration No. 37). Two other illustrations of a later period, possibly in the 1930s depict the reservoir filled with water but without cattle nearby (Illustration Nos. 36 and 38). One might conclude from this that the reservoir under study may have been active before 1930 but abandoned as a watering hole for cattle in later years.
L. Stone Fence
There are two references in the written record, both very significant, that establish the date of construction of the stone fence. In one entry to his diary in February 1896, Neil said he "Built rock fence on the mountain." In another entry made a few days later he added, "at home repaired stone fence on the mountain." 
There is every reason to believe that the stone fence Neil was speaking about was the one in question. He probably built it to prevent his cattle and horses from entering Stafford's orchard since the fence extended directly up the ridge north of Bonita Creek. The stone wall marked the boundary between his property and Stafford's.
What is left of the stone fence today is a deteriorated rubble wall topped by entangled barbed wire.
M. Corral, Fence, Chutes, and Gates
The ruins of barriers of all sorts, sizes, and shapes--made of boards, stone, wire, and barbed wire--with their gates, exist throughout the historic district of Faraway Ranch. The fences served to mark boundaries, keep stock out of orchards, gardens, and lawns, and enhance the beauty of the ranch. The corrals and chutes served to confine horses and cattle, sometimes before shipment. These facilities existed from the beginning of Stafford's and Erickson's settlement in the canyon. Lillian spoke of at least two corrals on the ranch in her unpublished work. 
As early as 1891, Emma complained to Neil, who was then working in Bisbee, that she needed a new fence, but money was always scarce so that frequently the Ericksons had to put off building fences until money was available. Neil advised her that "if you have the posts set, you can send John [his brother] to Willcox as soon as you get this letter and I will have twenty dollars there with the Post Master where John can get it and I think that three bundles of wire besides what we have will be enough . . . ." 
Whenever he was home in the 1890s Neil found time to build or repair fences and gates. Thus, in 1896 he wrote at one point, "Fixed fence around the chicken yard," and again he wrote "Dug post holes and set posts." 
An early photograph taken sometime in the 1920s depicted a circular corral with a chute (Illustration No. 39). An aerial view of Faraway Ranch revealed the same corral in relation to other structures including the Main House (Illustration No. 38). The circular corral was about 200 yards southwest of the Main House across from the dirt road that ran into the canyon past the house. Since the Main House had the adobe addition in this photograph, we must conclude that this picture was taken after 1915 to 1917. The circular corral is no longer there, and it may have been removed sometime in the mid-1920s when the new barn and corral, the existing structures, were built. The above-mentioned photograph as well as another one taken of the ranch about the same time do not show the existing corral, although the nearby windmill and open water tank are there. Again, we must conclude that at the time these pictures were taken, that is, between 1918 and the early 1920s, the existing corral as well as the barn were not in existence. These were both constructed between 1925 and 1929 (Illustration No. 26).
Fences and gates were on all parts of the ranch many of which still stand. These were frequently removed or relocated depending on the needs of the time. Although no longer in existence, there was one wide gate upon entering the area surrounding the Main House. Other gates were at the entrances to the garden in the rear of the house. About 1916, Hildegard wrote, "Met Alex at wire gate. He rode back up to open the other gate for me then came up." 
In 1930, Neil wrote, "Fixed the yard fence on east side." The following year he stated, "Pulled out all the posts on old fence line and bunched them by the road side. Hauled some up to the new fence below orchard." Again, he said in 1935, "Finished hanging the gate and nailed up the fence." 
In 1940 Lillian ordered an iron fence from the Stewart Iron Works Company of Cincinnati. The order was substantial, but nothing is known about its design or where it was located. 
There are several excellent views of the ranch depicting fences, gates, and stone walls in various locations. Many of these facilities are around the Main House. These illustrations also reveal how these barriers were relocated from time to time. As the ranch developed into a dude ranch these changes occurred more frequently (Illustration Nos. 4, 6, 30, and 40).
N. Water Trough
In the center of the corral is a small rectangular water trough made of concrete. It is in a deteriorated condition.
Lillian spoke of a water trough in her novel, so that such facilities were quite common on the ranch as early as the 1890s.  Early troughs were frequently made of wood, and as late as 1935, Neil purchased lumber at the sawmill to construct troughs for his pigs.  In 1922, however, Ed built a concrete trough while Lillian was in California, but in 1957 Lillian had another concrete trough made.  It is difficult to say which of these water troughs is the existing one or if in fact neither is.
O. Pig Pen
There exists at Faraway Ranch the ruins of a pig pen consisting of a rubble stone wail enclosure. It is northwest of the Main House.
This writer is aware of only one reference to a pig pen in the early records. In 1935 Neil wrote, "Helped Dave with a gate to Hog Pen."  On the other hand, there are several excellent illustrations, some as early as 1908, showing what was undoubtedly a pig pen just to the northwest of the Main House and directly behind the chicken house (Illustration No. 4). It stood on the same site as the existing ruin. According to these pictures the pen was fairly large and in the shape of a rectangle, the long sides standing east and west. The original stone walls were probably five feet high.
P. Cobblestone-edged Paths
There are a number of paths around the ranch delineated by the use of cobblestones on each side. Many of these paths are found about the immediate vicinity of the Main House and nearby structures.
There is no mention in the records about the construction of such paths, nor are these paths discernable in the early photographs of the area. The cobblestone-edged paths were probably a later addition at Faraway Ranch, possibly during the 1940s, when there was a need to improve the appearance of the ranch to attract more guests (Illustration No. 25).
Q. Bridge Over Newton's Wash
The bridge that crosses Newton's Wash is to the west of the Main House and east of the cowboy house. Neil's office-garage is to the northeast of it. The bridge is a narrow footbridge made of wood and is presently in very poor condition. The park has posted a danger sign on the bridge cautioning the visitor not to cross it (Illustration No. 41).
Newton's Wash or Creek was mentioned from time to time in the written records as early as 1911. At times this creek held considerable water especially after a heavy rainfall. As late as August 1935, Neil entered in his diary that it "started raining . . . Newton Cr. run [sic] a good stream. I went out and banked the water from the yard. Then [it] rained again. . . ." 
The creek ran north and south about 100 feet west of the Main House. In order to get to and from such facilities as the cowboy house and sheds a bridge was essential, especially during periods of heavy rain when the creek rose considerably. The first reference to the existence of a bridge was in 1935 when Neil wrote, "got a can of used oil for my bridge across creek to wood shed." The following day he added, "oiled the bridge in forenoon." 
It is difficult to say whether the bridge that Neil spoke about is the same one that exists today since a wooden bridge of this nature could have been replaced after it deteriorated in time. In any case, we do know that a bridge was in existence at least as early as 1935.
R. Ranch Roads
The National Register Nomination Form provides a good description of some of the existing dirt roads at Faraway Ranch. It said that
Many dirt roads, paths, and trails existed in Bonita Canyon before the Ericksons made it their home. Stafford had been living there since 1880 and a detachment of the U.S. 10th Cavalry had been stationed there for about eighteen months in 1885-86. Since Stafford already had a good orchard growing and sold much of his produce to the Army at Fort Bowie, a good access road from his property was important. Lillian referred in her novel to the "little path that led" between her house and Stafford's.  It was probably more than just a path if a horse and wagon had to use it daily.
After the Ericksons moved into the canyon, Neil and probably his brother built other trails and paths to facilitate movement between facilities. Neil's concern for his family, especially after his children started to attend school at the Riggs Settlement outside the canyon, must have led him to improve the existing paths and roads to make sure they were passable. Moreover, after receiving his appointment with the U.S. Forest Service in 1903 and proceeding to use his residence as a home base, good roads were necessary to make his rounds in the forest. The importance of good dirt roads continued to grow once the guest ranch business was in full operation. Neil advised Lillian and Ed that a good access road from the valley leading into the canyon was essential to a prosperous guest ranch. 
In 1931 and 1935 there were references to the cutting of new roads, projects undertaken by Neil; unfortunately, we are not certain what roads they were. In 1931 he said, "I have had Mexicans to cut up the trees in the canyon that were pulled out root and all for the new road." Again, in 1935 he wrote, "Started the boys to work on road."  Could this have been the main dirt road that was realigned and that we know today? This is probable.
There are several good photographs, some taken as early as 1908, depicting the main dirt road going into the canyon and paths and trails connecting various facilities at Faraway Ranch (Illustration Nos. 4, 33, 37, 40, and 42). Some of these paths have disappeared as facilities were removed and relocated, but others soon took their place as new structures rose.
S. Water Tanks
High on a ridge southeast of the Main House are two water tanks fed from the well east of the house (Illustration No. 43).
There are several references to water tanks in the records, but it is evident that some of these tanks were replaced over the years, especially if they were built of wood. The use of tanks was first mentioned in 1922 at which time Ed wrote to Lillian in California that "Tomorrow . . . we will make a start on the tanks over the hill."  It is difficult to say whether tanks were already in place at this time or whether Ed and Ben were about to construct them.
Not until 1936 do the records again refer to a water tank and at this time we learn a little about its makeup. Neil wrote in his diary of August 6, 1936, "My RedWood tank is full of water this morning, the first time since I put it up about the middle of June."  This redwood tank was apparently built in June 1936 by Neil. Six days later Neil reported that he "took overflow pipe out of the R.W. [i.e. redwood] tank & packed a flow in one stave near the top. . . ."  Neil must have been referring to a leak in one of the staves which he then proceeded to seal. The tank that was built in 1936 may have replaced the one that was mentioned by Ed in 1922.
By 1959 Neil's tank (or tanks) had been replaced with the existing ones, for in her diary Lillian said, "Cement tank and steel tank each about half full today. Water running into steel tank. . ." 
There was always some concern for the amount of water in the tanks, and if the tanks were losing water because of a leak, Lillian made sure that it would be repaired as soon as it was discovered. She frequently reported the level of water in both tanks. As was quite natural for ranch owners in these areas where drought was always a present danger, Lillian once wrote "I want to save all the water in cement tank as much as possible for spring use." 
The tanks were part of a water system first installed by Neil in the 1920s and later refined by Ed, the latter's son has said. Neil dug the original water ditch, and Ed later built a two-inch steel pipe in a water spring above the Stafford cabin. The pipe was placed six feet deep, and it ran along the ditch between Stafford's place and the Main House. At the southeast corner of the swimming pool Ed bolted a hydraulic ram that pumped or lifted water to the concrete tank on the hill where it was stored. The tank then overflowed into the pool, which in turn overflowed into the nearby garden. Before reaching the ram, the spring water flowed directly into a sump box where some of the water was filtered for drinking. 
There are the remains of three wells in the historic district as far as records and visual observations can determine. The oldest well is just outside the kitchen door of the Main House, and it was built to supply the needs of the household. A second well has the windmill above it and lies some 200 feet west of the house, near the barn and open tank and where Neil's orchard once stood. The third one, which is listed on the National Register Nomination Form, lies near the west end of the Stafford orchard, about 100 feet east of the Main House. Although the date that the first well was built can be determined pretty closely, the same cannot be said for the other two. In these last two cases the evidence is conflicting.
The oldest well is frequently mentioned in Lillian's fictional work and in the records. The need for a well soon after the family settled in the canyon was imperative. In later years, while writing about the Massai incident, Neil fixed this event in May 1890. At that time, said Neil, both he and his brother John had completed the digging of the well and were moving the accumulated earth to where they were completing the stone house. 
There is not much description of this first well in the records; however, whatever little there is has been provided by Lillian in her unpublished novel and in early photographs. Krispin (the character in her novel who represents her father), had had experience in digging a well at a mine in which he once worked. Using picks and shovels to dig and crowbars to loosen the rocks, both Neil and his brother dug deep into the earth. The windlass was a wooden round roller about four inches in diameter and six feet long. It was set on a frame over the well. A heavy rope one-inch in diameter was then fastened to the roller and at one end a large bucket was tied. 
There are some early photographs (taken about 1908) of the Main House that include the well, but the latter is not always clearly discernable. A wall about two and a half to three feet high is sometimes visible with a tall wooden frame above it to which the windlass was attached.
The original wall was probably built of stone. In much later years, possibly in the 1920s, the stone wall was covered with concrete forming the shape of an octagon. The top has a concrete cement moulding all around it. The framework stood on top of this moulding on four legs. Today the framework and windlass are no longer there, and the opening of the well is covered with a board (Illustration Nos. 4, 9, and 44).
In her fictional work Lillian said that a second well was built during the "first winter" and "fitted with a horse power to pump the water for the orchard that was to be set out in the spring. . . ." 
Although the need for an additional well soon became evident as the orchard and garden developed, thanks to Emma's constant care and persistance, it is hardly likely that a second well was built as early as Lillian would have us believe. A succession of letters written by Neil to Emma while he was working in Bisbee between 1890 and 1902 spoke of a need for a second and perhaps a third well. In a letter containing only the month and day, but probably written no later than January 1891, Neil said,
According to this letter, Emma was anxious to have a second well built, even going to the extent of hiring someone to do it, but apparently Neil discouraged her. In a letter written several months later, Neil wrote to Emma that she "will have to let the well be as it is at present because I will not work my life out and hurry it on the ranch. . . ."  This writer would interpret these letters to mean that a second well had yet to be built although Emma was constantly prodding her husband to build one. Neil, however, was not easily convinced of this for reasons which he saw as purely economical.
Statements made by Neil in his diary between 1896 and 1898 indicate that at last a second well had been built. In 1896 he spoke of a pump that he was working on to increase its horsepower. The following year he wrote again that he worked all day on the pump taking "the big 6" ironpump from house well and placing [it] on the big well and mill." Still one year later Neil noted that he "worked on the well having caved some. Completed well and pump."  There is no doubt that by now a second well had been installed with a windmill. The purpose of this well was to provide water for stock and for the orchard and garden which were constantly growing. The well was probably larger than the house well. It is the one with the existing windmill.
There follow some rather confusing statements by Neil. Writing from Bisbee where he returned to work, he said in a letter of June 1902, "I would like to have that well at home fixed up and a little windmill on it [but] I can not do so now." 
Does this mean that a third well had already been built, and if so was Neil thinking of putting a windmill on it? Neil certainly was not thinking of putting a windmill on the first, or house well. It was not that kind of a well. This well was built for household needs. If a third well had been built by now, where was it located? One month later Neil wrote, "and now about that well that you are so anxious to have dug. I am sorry to tell you but the man that I promised to send you, have now got a steady job that will probably last till about the middle of next month but I will then send him out. I would send him before if I could." 
It is probable that when Neil said he would "like to have that well at home fixed up," he really meant to have it built and then have a windmill placed upon it. As a foreign born pioneer, Neil's English did not always clearly express what he meant. This lack of clarity is often noticable in his writings and particularly in his early letters.
In any event, there is no conclusive evidence to prove that a third well was built at this time. The second "big" well that was built is the one that lies to the west of the Main House, that is, the one with the windmill. It would have been wise to have built it there for the Erickson orchard stood just to the west of the windmill.
If Erickson did develop a third well soon after 1902, it is difficult to imagine where it was located. In later years, however, a well was built in what was Stafford's lower orchard. It is the one that is listed in the National Register Nomination Form. Writing in his diary of March 1932, Neil said that "two boys from Dos Cabezas came out and located [i.e., camped] by the big well preparatory to clean up the lower orchard."  The term "lower orchard" had always been used to distinguish the orchard to the west of the Stafford cabin from the "upper orchard" located outside of the historic district. Although several photographs of the ranch do not show a windmill, Mrs. Ethel Erickson (Ben's wife) said that there was one (Illustration No. 45).  This well is described as having
If there was a windmill over the well, it is not known when it was removed. In 1957 Lillian recorded the following:
It is difficult to say what this all means. Some references have been made to the "old north well" in the records. but this writer has been unable to identify it unless it is meant to be the big well (and windmill) to the west of the Main House.
U. Faraway Ranch Cemetery
The tiny cemetery plot in which the Erickson family, except Lillian, is buried is outside the Faraway Ranch Historic District. It is at the mouth of Bonita Canyon and is a rectangular piece of land measuring 20 by 30 feet. An ornate iron fence set in a stone foundation encloses the plot (Illustration No. 46). Just outside this plot and a few feet to the east Lewis Prue is buried in an area also enclosed by an ornate iron fence set in a stone foundation.
Prue was another early pioneer of the area who settled just outside of Bonita Canyon. In 1892 he fell off a horse and was killed. He had expressed a wish to be buried at the mouth of the canyon where "he could see his cattle passing on their way to water in the canyon." Neil, who was working in Bisbee at the time, wrote to Emma saying,
Thus, Prue was buried on Neil's homestead, and in Neil's absence Emma had made the decision to fulfill Prue's wish. There are two good photographs of the Prue gravesite before the Erickson gravesite was built, one a 1915 illustration, the other around 1930 (Illustration No. 47). 
Neil was the first of the Ericksons to die, on October 18, 1937, and he was buried in the newly constructed family plot just west of where Prue was buried. Said one obituary, he was "buried at the mouth of Bonita Canyon where years ago he planted some cypress trees to mark his desired resting place."  Prue may have influenced Neil's selection of this burial site.
Whether the plot was fenced in at this time or at a later date is difficult to say. The ornamental iron fence may have been put in when Lillian ordered one in 1940. In any event, when Emma died, she was buried alongside her husband. Hildegard and Ben were also interred there.
There are two bronze plaques hanging on the west side fence. One is a memorial to Hildegard, the other has the following long inscription:
As the initials indicate, Lillian wrote this.
V. Landscape, Orchards, Gardens
Before Erickson settled on his homestead, Stafford, who had been in Bonita Canyon almost a decade earlier, produced at least one large orchard that is included in the historic district. This orchard, referred to as the "lower orchard," contained all sorts of fruitbearing trees. The Staffords were dependent almost entirely upon their orchards and garden for their livelihood, selling their produce to the Army at Fort Bowie and to pioneers in neighboring communities. Stafford's lower orchard extended from his cabin west to Erickson's ranch. It consisted of trees that bore pears, peaches, apples, and persimmons. A few of these trees still exist.
After the Ericksons settled in the canyon, Emma lost little time in getting a garden started. This was not easy because the area was frequently subject to severe droughts. Irrigation was extremely important, and she insisted at every opportunity that Neil provide her with the necessary facilities to water her garden. An interesting order placed by Neil as early as 1889 included such trees and plants as six apple trees, six dwarf pear trees, four plum trees, two prune trees, six peach trees, two apricot trees, six currant shrubs, and six gooseberry shrubs, all to be shipped to Willcox at a cost of $38.50.  This was probably one of Erickson's first orders after settling in the canyon. Other orders must have followed. The Ericksons orchard was to the west of the house adjacent to the open tank and windmill. Reminiscing in the 1940s, Emma noted that "we planted fruit trees and shrubs and vines, and raised plenty of vegetables for food" when they first settled in Bonita Canyon. She also did not lose any time in planting an abundance and variety of flowers around the Main House. 
There is considerable evidence to show the variety of fruit and vegetables planted at the Erickson ranch over the years. In 1896 Neil at one point said he ploughed the home garden with a mule. He planted potatoes, lettuce, leek, radish, mustard, and turnips in the home garden. He also irrigated and planted some sweet corn, beans, cabbage, tomatoes, squash, watermelon, and other items. The following year he planted onions, celery, and lettuce. Stafford even gave Neil permission to plant some beans and corn in his own garden. 
For many years the Erickson garden was located northeast of the house, and in all probability this is where it has always been.
After Lillian purchased the Stafford homestead, the Faraway Ranch had more produce than it could absorb even for the guest ranch operation. Between 1924 and 1933 a considerable amount of produce--cherries, peaches, apples, plums, pears, squash, corn, beans, tomatoes, cauliflower, and lettuce--grown in the Stafford orchard was sold through various outlets. 
As the ranch catered more and more to its paying guests it was natural for the Ericksons and Riggs to improve the landscape, particularly in the immediate vicinity of the house. Emma had done much of this in the early years. Now that the ranch had turned to the guest business, this improvement became even more important.
There are several photographs of the ranch, some depicting large areas, others focusing on single subjects, which provide the reader with excellent views of the landscape at Faraway Ranch at different periods. Views of the orchards and gardens are especially useful (Illustration Nos. 4, 8, 30 33, 37, and 48).
W. Nonextant Miscellaneous Structures
A significant number of structures in the historic district built over the years are today either totally or partially gone. Like many ranches of the period many structures were built, later moved to other localities, and still later razed, depending on the owner's needs at the time. The Martha Stark house was one such structure except that its destruction resulted from accidental fire.
On the north side of the Stafford orchard, a short distance south of the stream bed, is the site of the Martha Stark house. The Assessor's Office of Cochise County gives the year of construction as 1935.  Before 1950 Lillian and Ed purchased the house and had it moved by Roy Rising of Douglas to Faraway Ranch for the sum of $1,519.40. In addition to moving the structure and furniture, Rising was to build a foundation and septic tank connecting the bathroom to it. 
The house was fairly large, consisting of four rooms--two bedrooms, living room, kitchen, and bathroom. It had two doors, front and rear, with a small 13-1/2-by 5-1/2-foot porch in the front which faced the south. The structure was made of a composition siding, a gable roof of asphalt shingles, and floors of wood joists and softwood flooring. The interior walls consisted of drywall. It was heated by hot water space heaters. 
The structure was used for several years to house guests and employees of the ranch. In 1967 the building was totally destroyed by fire, the cause of which was a defective gas heater. At the time the National Register Nomination Form was prepared there remained only the concrete foundation, but this was later removed and the debris dumped in a three-foot-square concrete hole that probably was the ruins of the septic tank. A few feet away from the site where the cottage once stood is a six-inch pipe partly exposed, leading from the cabin site to the septic tank. This was probably the connection between the tank and bathroom.
There are two photographs, almost similar views of the Stark house, taken from the east at a considerable distance. The east side of the single story cottage contained two windows. Details of the rest of the house are difficult to discern because of the distance. These pictures were probably taken in the late 1950s. By then the Stafford orchard, except for a few scattered trees, had almost disappeared (Illustration No. 49).
The chicken house was a much older structure than the Martha Stark house, although this writer has been unable to document its original construction. The chicken house was just to the north and slightly west of the Main House.
References to a chicken yard and chicken pens were made as early as the 1890s. A fence ran around the "chicken yard" and this also might have served as the "chicken pen." The first reference to a chicken house, however, appears in Neil's diary for May 1898. At that time he said, "Repaired the Chicken House." 
In August 1899 he wrote, "Completed chicken coupe," and eleven years later Neil said, "put roof on the chicken coop." Finally, in 1935, Neil repaired the "old" chicken coop. He, however, had yet to fill in some of the small openings.  It seems clear that the chicken coop and chicken house, terms used alternately by Neil, were one and the same structure.
There are some excellent photographs, one as early as 1908, and others as late as the 1930s, which depict the structure. The best view, however, is one in which Emma is seen leaving the chicken house, a picture perhaps taken around 1915 (Illustration No. 50).
The chicken house was a relatively large structure whose long side stood east and west and whose facade faced the south. The two ends were enclosed by walls on four sides. The central portion, except for the roof, was opened in front. The roof, which covered the complete structure, was a lean-to, sloping downward from south to north.
Today there is nothing left of this structure other than some debris. It was probably considered a nuisance to the guests and eventually removed in the late 1930s.
Many of the same early photographs depicting the chicken house also show the pig pen directly behind it. The ruins of the pig pen still remain. When it experienced its greatest use, however, it was almost a square structure walled-in by stones on all four sides. According to photographs, the walls were about five feet high. Like the chicken house, the pig pen may have been permitted to go to ruin because of the nearby guests.
The National Register Nomination Form referred to the existence of an "Animal pen or cage (FR18)" lying south of the cowboy house. It described the structure as a "frame and wire pen of unknown use, enclosed not only on four sides, but also on top, for some small animal(s)." This writer did not observe any such structure other than debris in the approximate area.
Throughout the historic district there are signs of the possible existence of structures at one period or another. There is a small concrete foundation, for example, of unknown origin just to the east of the generator house. One cannot conclude that this was part of the chicken house since it is difficult to understand why a chicken house would have a concrete foundation. It is more likely that this concrete slab may have been part of the foundation of the old large garage before it was moved to where it now stands. Subsurface archeological investigations should reveal more about vanished structures including the privies used by the Main House before indoor plumbing was installed.
Last Updated: 27-May-2008