The Sedona Heritage Museum prides itself on its close relationships with many pioneer families. That means that the families are very generous with donating treasured family artifacts to share through Museum displays and Collection. A pair of such cherished items are dresses worn by our town’s namesake, Sedona Schnebly and her little daughter Pearl.
The dresses are on display in the “Schnebly Room” and are from the time when Pearl was still part of her family in a place that had only just become known by her mother’s name.
Sedona Schnebly, her husband T.C., and her first two children lived along the banks of Oak Creek from 1901 to 1905. They arrived optimistic for a prosperous future in Arizona Territory, unfortunately that was a short-lived dream. Tragedy befell them when they lost daughter Pearl.
The family story goes that Sedona, her son Ellsworth and little Pearl were rounding up the milk cow when Pearl, then five years old, spotted an arrowhead or other interesting object on the ground. Jumping off her pony, she wrapped the reins around her neck while she bent down to pick it up. At that instant the cow, knowing what she was supposed to do, headed for the barn; and the pony, knowing she was to follow the cow, started after it. Pearl fell, the pony panicked and ran dragging Pearl to her death.
Her daughter was buried in the front yard of their home and soon Sedona fell into a state of melancholy (what we’d call depression today). On medical advice, T.C. moved Sedona and his children back to Missouri so they could put some distance between themselves and their sad loss.
To allow viewing of these special garments and other artifacts from the Schnebly family, the Museum has reopened with usual hours of 7 days/week, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Until further notice, masks are required and other safety protocols have been implemented.