Make a resolution this year to learn more about Tucson’s history and culture. The Presidio Museum’s January events make it easy!
Living History Day this month focuses on the Trades and Homemaking Skills of the Arizona Frontier. These crafts and skills were crucial to the survival of the presidio and later residents of Tucson. As part of these demonstrations, visitors will have the opportunity to meet a re-enactor portraying Sister Monica Corrigan, the leader of the first nuns to come to Tucson in 1870 known as the Seven Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. Sister Monica wrote a book about their travel adventures getting to Tucson. She also founded the St. Joseph School for Girls, the first girls’ school in Tucson, which used to be located on 17th St. Sister Monica will give a presentation at 10:45 am and 11:45 am. In addition, El Camino Ancho will play traditional Spanish music throughout the day. Traditional demonstrations will also be available throughout the event, including blacksmithing, tastings of handmade tortillas, children’s games, soldier drills and firing of muskets and cannon and much more. Living History Day will be held on Saturday, Jan. 8 from 10 am to 2 pm and is included in admission.
Our Salon & Saloon Lecture Series will present “German-Speaking Jesuits, Founders of Sonora/Arizona” on Saturday, Jan. 15, at 7 am. The lecture will be presented by Zoom only. Arizona has always been a border territory, with many different cultures living in the area. The late 17th and 18thcenturies witnessed an influx of foreigners in the arrival of the Jesuit missionaries. By ca. 1830, the number of missionaries of German origin had exploded, and they dominated the entire province in religious and missionary activities. Dr. Albrecht Classen will take us back to that time to discuss what motivated those missionaries, what they achieved, and why they were eventually expelled (maybe because they had been too successful for the Spaniards?). This lecture will be presented by Zoom only. Pre-registration and payment of $5 lecture fee is required to receive the Zoom link. Go to https://tucsonpresidio.com/calendar/salon-saloon-lecture-series-german-speaking-jesuits-founders-of-sonora-arizona/ to register.
A Turquoise Trail Walking Tour will be held on Sunday, Jan. 16, from 10 am to 12:30 pm. A Presidio Museum docent leads the walk along the 2.5-mile trail through downtown Tucson, discussing historic buildings and stories that reveal Tucson’s unique history. The tour fee is $15 for members and $20 for non-members. Pre-registration is highly recommended at https://tucsonpresidio.com/walking-tours/.
Something new for the Presidio Museum this year is the offering of travel outside of Tucson. Tours through New Mexico and California are being offered in May and July respectively. To learn more about these trips, the Presidio Museum is holding a Trips Preview presentation on Sunday, Jan. 16, at 2 pm. Led by the Presidio Museum’s Program and Garden Specialist Alex La Pierre, (who will also lead the trips) the orientation will preview the tours, outlining the itineraries and providing essential information. For more information about the tours, see https://tucsonpresidio.com/2022-presidio-museum-trips/.
Another new offering at the Presidio Museum is Sunday Funday. This family activity will be held on Sunday, Jan. 20, from 10 am to 1 pm and will feature the various ways that the cultures that make up Tucson’s population celebrate New Year’s. Activities may include making noisemakers, salt snowflakes, or paper lanterns. This event is included with admission and all events will take place from 10 am to 1 pm.
Our History in the Field Youth Workshop will be held on Monday, Jan. 24, from 4-6 pm and focuses on the Art of Tucson. Participants will learn about the art and culture of some of the people important to the growth of Tucson, including the indigenous, Mexican, and Chinese cultures. Activities may include creating petroglyphs, making papel picado, designing your own alebrijes, or making Chinese dragons. Pre-registration and payment of $5 workshop fee is required. Chaperones are also required to register and participate. This program is ideal for third and fourth grade students, but youth of all ages will enjoy the programs and are welcome to register at https://tucsonpresidio.com/history-in-the-field-youth-programs/.
The museum’s popular Native Nations Demonstrations and Craft Market will be held on Saturday, Jan. 29, from 10 am to 2 pm. Visitors will enjoy demonstrations by several Native artists. Artists will also have items available for sale. The following Native American artists will participate:
**Bernice Monte – Tohono O’odham basket weaver
**Homer Marks Jr – Tohono O’odham and Hopi woodcarver
**Renee Cruz – Tohono O’odham beadwork
**Kathleen Vance – Tohono O’odham and San Carlos Apache ollas
**Teresa Choyguha – Tohono O’odham clay pottery and jewelry
**Sherrie Cruz – Tohono O’odham frybread/popovers baker
Special guest Taking Up Space will also conduct STEM demonstrations. Taking Up Space exists to give middle school-aged Native American girls the confidence and skills to succeed in STEM and foster their excitement and curiosity in these fields. The organization also works to decrease the gender gap in STEM classes in middle school, high school, and college while increasing Native American Representation. Flintknapping demonstrations will also be presented by Allen Denoyer.
The Presidio San Agustín del Tucson Museum is located on the northeast corner of the original Presidio at 196 N. Court Ave. The Presidio Museum is a reconstruction of the original Tucson Presidio built in 1775. Docent tours give visitors a glimpse of what life in the Presidio was like for soldiers and other residents. Additional highlights include an original 150-year-old Sonoran row house and a 2,000-year-old prehistoric pit house. Admission is $5 for adults, $1 for children ages 6-13 and free for children five and under and Presidio Museum members. The Presidio Museum is managed by the Tucson Presidio Trust for Historic Preservation, a not-for-profit entity whose mission is to guide and aid in the interpretation of history at the Presidio San Agustín through research, education and living history experiences.