The Rosson House, Rose Garden Tour, and Mapping Early Phoenix at Heritage Square + Book Review of “Vanished Arizona”

Rosson House homeschool Phoenix co-op

DISCLOSURE I am a classical homeschooling mom of 7. You can trust that any referring links to external products on this site are only from products I personally use and love. I may get affiliate compensation for the links I use – if you want to click on the links – awesome – it's kind of like a “tip jar.” But if you don’t want to click on the links that’s absolutely fine too. I just want you to know I value complete honesty and integrity and I would never link to something that I haven’t tried and tested with my own children.


Here we are examining the Victorian style of architecture, noticing the shapes and designs.
The Rosson house, while much of it is off limits, still has a lot of kid friendly things that you can touch and play with. This is an old 3-D viewer. The image looks a little 3D (not nearly like or technology) but still pretty neat!
Here’s a funny picture…
…and then a very serious one! Posing like they would have back in the early 20th century.
Side view of the beautiful brick house. It is 2 stories with an attic and basement (almost really making it 4 stories).
Our docent showing the children what Phoenix looked like long ago.
The Rosson house is outlined in red on the upper right corner of the map, on the outskirts of town.
Here it is shown bigger. How much Phoenix has changed!
Then she taught the children how to read old maps.
Using compasses they go on a scavenger hunt finding different antiques around Heritage Square.
One of the scavenger hunt spots led us to this lovely little shady garden where the archway was made by the local blacksmith association. I thought my son would appreciate that since he and my husband are members of the same organization.
The hand forged archway
After our scavenger hunt this passionate volunteer gave us a tour of the Heritage Square Rose Garden, located just south of the Rosson House. It is dedicated “to all those who love Arizona.” Well that would include us!
She showed us many wonderful roses and told us how they were planted, weeded, and pruned. She had us smell different kinds, among our favorites was Mr. Lincoln as shown above and a yellow lemony smelling rose! Anyone can volunteer to maintain the garden, just contact Heritage Square.

The book above was a recommendation by the docent that gave us the tour and I absolutely loved it. Such an easy and delightful read. Vanished Arizona is about a New England woman who marries an army man and they are stationed out here in AZ to control the indian “problem.” This was while Arizona was a territory and the indians had been forced onto reservations, many didn’t want to go, they would hide in the mountains, etc. They could be very violent to pioneers and military alike, so the military was called in to quell the violence. Her memoirs do go into some of the violence.

Her story begins up north near Camp Verde, Sedona, and Prescott (she moves quite a bit) and later is stationed down near Scottsdale. She even went to Tucson and Yuma. It was delightful to hear her descriptions of all the different places I have known and grown up in all my life, as she traveled around from fort to fort by horse and wagon…with babies and toddlers in tow! Also enjoyable were her recollections of how she battled the HEAT in the valley (in sum–she hated it!) But once she left AZ she grew to remember and miss AZ with fondness. When she would come back some 10 years later and find Arizona to be very, very different (ice was being brought in!) and felt that the AZ she new had quite vanished. If only she could see it now!

I recommend getting a map to follow along as you read, I googled a lot of the places she mentioned as some were not easily found on apple maps since names had changed.

Leave a Reply