An early viable economic activity of the 1800s in Arizona has been mostly forgotten. Basque, Canadians, Danes among others arrived in the mid to late 1800s to graze sheep on thousands of acres practicing transhumance. Many of these men worked for other established ranchers until ultimately they gained a herd of their own. In the early 1900s the herds had grown to over one million sheep. But, today there is less than 20,000 sheep and only a couple of Basque families are still involved. Through personal interviews, especially with the Basque, and various written historical accounts, this presentation will discuss the reasons why sheep herders came to Arizona and their contribution to the state’s history and economy.
Dr. Jaquay has a B.A degree in Anthropology, a M.A. in Geography and a PhD. in Historical Geography. She has traveled extensively visiting all seven continents, over forty countries, hiked parts of the Bhutanese Himalayas, the Inca trail in Peru, and walked a section of the Great Wall of China. Jaquay has visited many out-of-the way islands such as: Robinson Crusoe, Easter, Tahiti and the Galapagos for their archaeological, historical and geographical mysteries. Her travels and research is compiled into a variety of presentations which she shares with students and adults in Arizona and across the country. She has published about Arizona’s Native Americans and Bed and Breakfasts in Costa Rica.