Three Cheers for Unbreakable Dolls: True Stories of Amazing Pioneer Women in Arizona

True stories of fascinating pioneer women in Arizona. Featuring: Sarah Ashurst who tied her two year old daughter Eve to a wagon wheel so she wouldn’t wander off while she gave birth, unassisted to the baby that would become Arizona’s first senator. That was only the beginning of Sarah’s adventures as she and her family headed to the Arizona Territory! Kate Lyall, a single mother with four children homesteaded in Southern Arizona in Doubtful Canyon, so named because early pioneers were “doubtful” they would survive. Martha Purtymun baked a saw into a cake to help her father, the very colorful Bear Howard, escape from jail. Bear then left California and headed to Oak Creek Canyon, Arizona a good place to hide from the law!

Guadalupe Vasquez and her husband fled Mexico to escape Pancho Villa to find a new life in Flagstaff, Arizona, a sweet story! Cecil Creswell who changed her name three different times ran away from home at age 14. She eventually arrived in Winslow, Arizona to work as a Harvey Girl. Her cowboy skills, roping and riding launched her into a new career, as a cattle thief. Katherine Beard came on the railroad from Kansas to work on the Navajo and Hopi reservations. She arrived full of hopes and dreams and for the first year was a virtual prisoner high atop a mesa. Her story of continued perseverance is inspiring!

With each story of these remarkable women, the author has paired a complementary humorous short story about the “Good ol’ Days” in Arizona written by the author’s father in the 1960’s and 70’s.

What Reviewers are Saying

McDonald knows what to tell and how to do it. She's a true lover of Native Americans and pulls few punches. A rare combination when you compare her stories to others.

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