|Territorial Women's Memorial Rose Garden|
CAROLYN ROOT DAY BEACH
Carolyn Day was born on McCormick Street in Prescott on December 18, 1902, the youngest daughter of Dr. Warren D. Day’s 10 children. Her father came to Arizona in 1873 at the request of General George Crook and served as post surgeon at Ft. Verde until 1876.
By 1877, Dr. Day had built the Octagon House on Gurley Street and was practicing medicine in Prescott. His office was later in the Lawler Building for many years. As a child, Carolyn accompanied her father in a buggy to the County Hospital, the Pioneers' Home, and on house calls. She remembered holding the horse while she waited for him, and sometimes she hitched up the horse and buggy and picked him up at his office at the end of the day.
The Day family did not live lavishly; when Mrs. Day chastised her husband for not sending bills, he replied, “Why? They never have any money anyway.” He never turned down a patient. Carolyn recalled that groceries, milk and vegetables from the Chinese gardens were often delivered to their home.
Carolyn and her siblings spent a lot of time swimming, picnicking and climbing Thumb Butte on her aunt’s ranch next to the Hassayampa Country Club. They never missed a parade. Her father took her to hear President Taft’s speech when he came to Prescott, because it would probably be the only time she would get to see an American President.
On Sundays, she rode the streetcar from one end of town to the other just for fun. The family sang around the piano, and one time Mrs. Day brought dolls to Carolyn and her sisters. They had a funeral, buried the dolls and never received another one!
She attended grammar school at St. Joseph’s Academy and one year of high school in Prescott, where she was captain of the girls’ basketball team. Grace Sparkes, a Prescott pioneer and historian, was on her team. Their games were in the arena above the Nu-Way Market. Carolyn left school early and began working for some of Prescott’s merchants.
She worked at the Bashford-Burmister Company and was a clerk then bookkeeper at Goldwater Brothers, where she sometimes put in as many as 50 hours a week for ten cents an hour. Other employers were Joe Allen’s Nu-Way Market and Sam Hill Hardware Company, where she had a seasonal job in the toy department at Christmas-time. Carolyn “sold everything that was in the store” and soon became a department manager, staying at Sam Hill’s for four years.
Carolyn met John Wesley Beach when he was a patient at Fort Whipple after World War I, and they married in 1923. They had two sons, Jack and Richard. John and Carolyn were married for almost 40 years before John’s death. She then returned to work as a real estate agent until her retirement at age 67.
Carolyn lived on Grove Street in Prescott for 55 years. When she moved to a Mesa retirement home, she could not turn down an offer to work in the gift shop there. She later went to Tucson where she passed away on October 23, 1997, at the age of 94, survived by a daughter-in-law, four grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews. She was buried in Mountain View Cemetery, Prescott.
Carolyn's mother, Jeanette "Bridget" Day, is also commemorated in the Rose Garden.
DONOR: Mona Lange McCroskey
|Additional documentation and photographs may be available in the Sharlot Hall Museum Archives and Library.|