History of Sedona
Yes. Sedona is named after a real woman.
Theodore Carlton ‘Carl’
Schnebly met and married Sedona Arabella Miller in Gorin
Missouri in 1897, on Sedona’s 20th birthday.
Sedona’s father was against their union, despite Carl’s
prominent family, college education, and successful hardware
business partnership with his brothers.
In 1901, Carl’s brother
Ellsworth was teaching school in Oak Creek Canyon. He wrote to
his brother and asked him to join him in red rock country. When
the family departed Missouri, Sedona’s father wrote his daughter
out of his will, not wanting her to move away and to “Indian
country”. Carl arrived in Camp Garden as it was called, and
bought the Owenby’s 80-acre patented homestead along the creek.
Sedona and their two small children arrived a few days later on
the train to Jerome Junction.
T.C. and Sedona Schnebly.
At first, the family lived in
an old bunkhouse on their property. Carl was energetic and
built the family a 2-story home along the banks of Oak Creek,
near where the road crossed the creek. The family grew produce
and settled into their new life.
Carl took his fruit and produce
to Flagstaff up the Munds trail. It was a 2-day trip up and a
2-day trip back. Carl and his brother worked on improving the
primitive road, which other residents worked on sporadically,
hoping to reduce travel time to Flagstaff. After delivering
produce, Carl often brought back visitors and the Schnebly home
became known as a good place to stay and have meals. When
things were especially busy, they set-up tents and rented them
to guests. Carl also had a supply of bacon, flour and tobacco
that he sold.
Schnebly often picked up mail
for locals on his trips to Flagstaff. So, in 1902 he applied to
the Postmaster General to establish a post office here. After
submitting “Oak Creek Crossing” and “Schnebly Station” as names
and getting a rejection, Ellsworth suggested that he submit
Sedona’s name. This was accepted and Sedona got its’ first post
office - and its’ name - in June 1902.
The Schnebly’s third child was
born in 1903. Sedona was busy with laundry, cooking and
cleaning for her family and their many guests. She also led
non-denominational church services in the family home. The
family seemed touched with good fortune.
In 1905, Sedona was herding
milk cows with her son Ellsworth, daughter Pearl and baby
Genevieve. The story is that little Pearl looped her pony’s
reins around her neck as she stooped to examine something on the
ground when a cow suddenly took off for the house. She was drug
to death when her pony dashed after the cow. After that, Sedona
became melancholic and the doctor advised that Carl take her
away from the sadness.
They moved back to Missouri and
later homesteaded in Colorado. Three more children were born.
When their cattle died in a blizzard and of anthrax, and Carl
became ill with influenza, Carl and Sedona moved back to the
community that bore Sedona’s name. They both worked. Sedona
administrated the Sunday School and helped establish the Wayside
Chapel. Carl was often called the town’s ‘honorary’ mayor.
They lived the rest of their days here and are buried in the
Cook Cedar Glade Cemetery in town.