Celebrating Arizona women

Nellie Cashman (Photo courtesy of SCC)

Legend has it that Nellie Cashman, a pioneering businesswoman who settled for a time in Tombstone, had a boarder named Doc Holliday who once threatened to slay a man who dared to complain about her cooking.

There’s more to the story, of course, and I know just where you can hear it — at an event called “Celebrating Arizona Women” that will “chronicle the legacy and diversity of Arizona women, past and present.” Think song, dance and storytelling.

Folks who attend will learn about the Harvery Girls, who’ve been credited with “bringing gentility and guests to Arizona.” The pair was memorialized in film, and even a lovely bit of vinyl recorded by Judy Garland. Also can-can dancers “imported by a French madam” to entertain all those lonely early Arizona miners.

Even the Sisters of Mercy, whose primitive hospital has evolved into two modern facilities. Seems it all began with nursing tuberculosis patients during the late 19th century.

One of our more recent legends, Rose Moffard, is serving as honorary chair for the event– which she’s presenting along with Scottsdale Community College and the American Association of University Women.

They’re also partnering with several other groups. The League of Women Voters will be showcasing women in public service by rocking the suffragette vibe.

The Scottsdale Historical Society will feature “early teachers in a one-room school” free of a little something I like to call “iStuff.” And Mujer, Inc. will “illustrate how early Latina settlers worked alongside their partners as they homesteaded.”

Sisters of Mercy with an early patient (Photo courtesy of St. Joseph's Foundation)

Arizona’s official storyteller, Marshall Trimble, is serving as emcee — but it has me wondering. If the event is all about women, shouldn’t his remarks be delivered wearing an apron and wig?

“Celebrating Arizona Women” takes place Fri, Feb. 24 (7:30pm) and Sat, Feb. 25 (2pm and 7:30pm) at the SCC Performing Arts Center. Tickets are already available for just $20. Good to know if you’re still trying to shop for the woman who has everything.

The “Arizona Women’s Heritage Trail” exhibit will be displayed in the SCC Student Center mall. Net proceeds from this event will provide scholarships to SCC students.

— Lynn

Note: Tickets can be purchased at the door or online at www.maricopa.edu/foundation/egive (Look for the “I would like my gift to go to:” section, then select “Scottsdale CC” as the “College/Group.” Next, select “Celebrating Arizona Women” as the “Scholarship/Event” before moving to the next section to select a performance date/time.)

Coming up: What’s new in writing workshops?, My votes for holiday movie time


One response to “Celebrating Arizona women

  1. While all the women mentioned are deserving and worthy of celebrating, I wrote about notable AZ women who served our state and country during WWII. The book title is ARIZONA GOES TO WAR, THE HOME FRONT AND THE FRONT LINES DURING WORLD WAR II, published by U of AZ Press.
    Ten authors (including Marshall Trimble) each wrote a chapter and mine was titled Women And The War Effort. Included were military nurses, WAVES, WACS, civilian pilots, and “Rosie the Riveter.”
    I realize the list could go on forever of women who should be remembered for contributions in our state, and there are many doing remarkable things at this time. Bless them all!

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