Such Mad Fun Prologue — All the Things You Were

I picked up the book carefully, wary of the mold on its faded cover. Rodents had gnawed through the corners and the edges of its pages. On this oppressive June day when the humidity intensified all sweet and sour odors, the book smelled terrible. It was headed for the landfill, but the playful inscription to…

Where Is Dick Wick Hall Now?

On October 4, once again, the town of Salome, Arizona, and the surrounding community will celebrate Dick Wick Hall Days. I’ve been fortunate to participate in these festivities with each of my daughters. My grandfather’s most visible legacy still lies in Salome (where he’s pictured here), and in the other towns of the McMullen Valley among…

“A Genius Passed Away”

Encouraged by her father’s success with his now syndicated Salome Sun, and his stories in the The Saturday Evening Post, “little Jane” kept on scribbling. During the fall and winter of 1925–1926, more of her poems were published, and her biography of a little colt told from his point of view came out in the…

How Did Salome Become Famous?

Thomas Lansing Masson (1866-1934)  Mentor to the Hall Family In this age of social networking and instant access to information, it’s hard to imagine life 90 years ago when it took a lot of patience and more than a little luck to put a tiny town like Salome, Arizona, on the national map. That’s what happened…

Christmas in Salome, Arizona 1925

Happy Holidays to all! This illustration of “Our Christmas Tree“ (unsigned but possibly by Claude G. Putnam)* appeared in The Salome Sun in 1925. No one imagined it would be Dick Wick Hall’s last Christmas (see prior post).  Dick added the following thoughts using  the sporadic upper case letters that became his signature and some deliberately questionable grammar:  “Christmas comes…

The Laughing Desert

The Laughing Desert, a book about Jane Hall’s father, humorist Dick Wick Hall, and his nationally syndicated newspaper feature that made the town of Salome, Arizona, famous in the 1920s, came out just in time for the 2012 celebration of Dick Wick Hall Days. This year the festivities take  place on October 5. The book includes a complete…