Pimeria Alta Historical Society and Museum
136 N. Grand Avenue Nogales, AZ 85621 call us: 520-287- 4621
Please join us in
of our building
Feb. 15th, 2015
2:00 - 4:00 p.m.
the opening of
Interested in learning more about us?
Children's History Summer School
July 7th through July 11th
11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
ages 8 to 14
To register, or for more information,
or by calling 520-287-4621
Day of the Dead Tour of
the Historic Nogales Cemetery
November 8, 2014
11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Meet at the Main Gate of the cemetery
Exit I -19 head at Western Avenue
Head east one mile on Western
Turn left on Rodriquez Street
Main gate is on left at the top of the hill
Tickets for the cemetery tour will be available at the Historical Society Museum in early October. They will also be sold on the day of the tour.
Summer School is free and supported by donations from -
Santa Cruz County
Renee Marcus, in memory of
Raymond Albert Larson
The Gebler Trust
Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office,
Sheriff Tony Estrada.
Santa Cruz County Attorney,
Dirty work prepares clock tower for repair
By Murphy Woodhouse
Posted: Tuesday, October 21, 2014 12:00 am
Faith Posey moved up through the beams of the Old City Hall clock tower last Tuesday morning with the practiced ease she developed working for 17 years on high-rises in Chicago.
Now, armed with vacuum cleaners, paint scrapers, brass brushes and rags, Posey isn’t doing high-flying glass work as a union glazier, but cleaning the inside of the clock tower in preparation for repairs to the nearly century-old timekeeper’s gears, hands and glass faces.
Two weeks into the project, the project’s volunteer program manager said she’s taken out nearly five, 5-gallon buckets of diesel-infused dust.
“No matter how much you clean,” Posey said, taking off one pair of shoes and putting on a grungier pair of work boots, “you still get dirty.”
On Oct. 1, the Nogales City Council unanimously approved $40,000 to clean the clock tower and repair the clock before the 100-year anniversary of the building, which once housed City Hall, on Feb. 15, 2015. The funding comes from a 2007 grant from the Tohono O’odham nation.
Teresa Leal, curator of the Pimeria Alta Museum that now occupies Old City Hall, said that the clock last ran consistently in 2003. According to a document provided by Posey, the clock was made by the Seth Thomas Company and is one of three made by the company in the state.
Posey said the tower should be cleaned and ready for repairs by the end of October. After that, master clockmaker Galen Gudenkauf, who used to run Galen’s Towing in town, and Chris Gralle will have November and December to work on the clocks themselves, Posey said. Former Nogalian and Flagstaff-based woodworker Bob Fain, Nogales High School class of 1967, will also fashion new hands out of redwood. January will provide a cushion in case unforeseen snags come up before the centennial anniversary, Posey said.
Up in the clock tower last Tuesday morning, lit only by a few incandescent bulbs and morning sun coming through the purple-tinged clock glass, Posey and fellow volunteer Ed Dvorak, a retired mechanical engineer from Dearborn, Mich., strung together extension cords and hefted a Shop-Vac up on top of the clock gear’s housing.
With too little cord to work with, Dvorak held the vacuum up to give Posey more reach, as she scrambled from ceiling beam to ceiling beam with the hose in hand.
“I’m comfortable with the heights,” she said. Heights, she added, of up to 72 stories.
According to Dvorak, the project was worth his retirement time because old buildings have lessons to teach.
“Up here, you realize this is the way it was,” he said.