LB - Washington Post 0408 (subscribe)

Home | Classifieds | Place an Ad | Public Notices | Galleries | Opinions | Obituaries | Contact Us | Subscribe | e-newsletter | RSS | GrandCanyonTourGuide.com
Williams News | Williams, Arizona

home : williams tour guide : williams tour guide April 17, 2015


5/26/2012 10:32:00 AM
'Old Bill' lives on
Bill Williams Mountain men
Bill Williams Mountain Man Bob Dean rides proudly in the 2007 Rendezvous Day Parade.
Patrick Whitehurst/WGCN
Bill Williams Mountain Man Bob Dean rides proudly in the 2007 Rendezvous Day Parade.
Patrick Whitehurst/WGCN
The Bill Williams Mountain Men maintain the spirit and romance of the old southwest.
Patrick Whitehurst/WGCN
The Bill Williams Mountain Men maintain the spirit and romance of the old southwest.
Patrick Whitehurst/WGCN
Past Mountain Men honored
While in Williams, make Monument Park one of your must-see places. Monument Park is located at the west end of Williams. There you will find a plaque honoring deceased members of the Mountain Men near the statue of Bill Williams.

The plaque was dedicated on Sept. 4, 2004. The plaque lists approximately 47 members from the past 50 years. An additional 13 slots have been pre-drilled for future honorees.

Enjoy a picnic at Monument Park at any one of several picnic tables. The park is a serene place to hear the breeze blow through the trees as your mind wanders back to the days when the Mountain Men trapped in the Williams area.


The Bill Williams Mountain Men - an organization that formed in Williams in 1953 - have kept the spirit of "Old Bill" alive today. The memory of 19th century trapper William Sherley Williams - also known as "Old Bill" - is also preserved by the residents of Williams and the mountain which bears his name, located just four miles south of town.

The Bill Williams Mountain Men - comprised of businessmen, ranchers, doctors, lawyers and all other sorts - was formed as a way to keep the romance and tradition of the old southwest and early America alive in modern times.

In their earlier days, the group traveled annually to Phoenix to participate in the annual Phoenix Jaycee's Rodeo. In recent years, including this one, the trip has been make to Cave Creek, located northeast of Phoenix, where the group participates in the Cave Creek Rodeo and parade. The group has represented "Old Bill" and the city of Williams in a fashion that has made them stand out. As a result, they have been invited to many other events including all of the Fiesta Bowl Parades except one, and five different presidential inauguration parades - the most memorable of which was the inauguration of John F. Kennedy in 1961.

The Mountain Men dress and travel in the tradition of the famous fur trapper "Old Bill." From scant written records it is reported that "Old Bill" was born in Rutherford County, N.C. in 1787. He became a roving Baptist preacher and lived near or among the Osage Indians for many years.

Drifting further west, he became a member of a trapping party organized in Arizona as early as 1826. During his lifetime in great, unknown wilderness areas, he made his way as a trapper and guide, traveling at will from Oregon to old Mexico. His movements from 1825-1841 are sketchy, but it is believed he visited this particular region of Arizona frequently during those years.

Williams is said to have died at the hands of Ute Indian warriors on March 14, 1849 in Colorado, and is buried in that state. In 1980, an eight and one-half-foot, 1,000-pound bronze statue of "Old Bill" - created by local artist Bill Pettit - was unveiled at the West end of Williams.

Today "Old Bill" lives on through the Bill Williams Mountain Men as they make their annual trek to the Valley, raising funds that benefit Williams youth in the form of scholarships. Locally, the Mountain Men participate in various parades and rodeos. The city of Williams is proud to have such a unique ambassador as the Bill Williams Mountain Men.

Related Links:
• View guide as seen in print (PDFs)
• Table of Contents


    Recently Commented     Most Viewed
Editorial: Commenting to move to Facebook
New maintenance coordinator at Williams Airport
Williams School Board Candidates face off in candidate forum
Hunters shoot prairie dogs at Williams Elementary-Middle School
Composer Ted Nichols, known for his Scooby Doo and Flintstones scores, continues his varied musical career from his home in Williams


Reader Comments

Posted: Sunday, November 13, 2011
Article comment by: stuart williams

I'm related to old Bill.



Article Comment Submission Form
Comments are not posted immediately. Submissions must adhere to our Use of Service Terms of Use agreement. The email and phone info you provide will not be visible to the public.Rambling or nonsensical comments may not be posted. Comments are limited to 1300 characters or less. In order for us to reasonably manage this feature we may limit your comment entries to five(5) per day.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Required
Last Name:
Required
Telephone:
Required
Email:
Required
Comment:
Required
Passcode:
Required
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.
   


Advanced Search

HSE - Return to Table of Contents Button
HSE - We want to hear from you
Find more about Weather in Williams, AZ
Click for weather forecast





Find It Features Blogs Milestones Submit Extras Other Publications
Home | Classifieds | Place an Ad | Public Notices | Galleries | Opinions | Obituaries | Contact Us | Subscribe | e-newsletter | RSS | Site Map
LB - Washington Post 0408 (subscribe)

© Copyright 2015 Western News&Info, Inc.® Williams-Grand Canyon News is the information source for Williams, Arizona and surrounding communities. Original content may not be reprinted or distributed without the written permission of Williams GC Newspapers Inc. Williams News Online is a service of Williams GC Newspapers Inc. By using the Site, williamsnews.com ®, you agree to abide and be bound by the site's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy, which prohibit commercial use of any information on the site. Click here to submit your questions, comments or suggestions. Williams News Online is a proud publication of Western News&Info Inc.® All Rights Reserved.

Software © 1998-2015 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved