Territorial Women's Memorial Rose Garden

The names of Elizabeth's parents are not known. She was born in Ohio (possibly Morgan County) around 1833.

Elizabeth married Joel Henry Densmore, and the couple had eight children: Ida Sarah Durbin, born July 31, 1859; Henrietta Maxwell, born November 12, 1861; Eva B. Nesbit, born in 1863; Nellie Lu Chartz Crosby, born in 1866; Viola Gilmore, born in 1871; Edwin (Edward) Joel, born December 16, 1872; Willis, born in 1878; and Paul H., born June 15, 1880.

The Densmore family came to Prescott, Arizona Territory, in 1875, and in January 1879 the couple bought a house on property near Granite Creek about two miles south of town. They raised some stock, and Joel registered a brand for their ranch. On October 4, 1884, Joel died as a result of injuries suffered from the rebound of a shotgun.

Elizabeth became a widow with five minor children dependent on her. She gardened on the land and nursed sick people in the community in order to support her children.

In 1885, Elizabeth applied, through the Homestead Act, for ownership of the land under and surrounding her house. The patent for the property was issued to her in 1890. To have a woman enter into the government and business world in this time frame is rather unusual. The property was bought and sold by her several times in subsequent years.

Elizabeth entered the Yavapai County Hospital in November 1903, where she remained until her death on January 22, 1907. She was buried in Citizens Cemetery.

Donor: Patricia T. Atchison, great great-granddaughter
April 2003

Additional documentation and photographs may be available in the Sharlot Hall Museum Archives and Library.