Territorial Women's Memorial Rose Garden

Marcia Anna Wing, daughter of Thomas and Harriet Trowbridge Wing, was born in Muskegon, Michigan, on May 26, 1858. In the late 1870s, her brothers James and George came to Arizona Territory seeking fame and fortune as goldminers.

Marcia’s mother died in 1878, and her father decided to join his sons in Arizona. Thomas sought the position of Registrar with the U. S. Land Office in the Arizona Territory, located at that time in Prescott. Upon receiving the appointment, he moved west in 1882. In 1883, Marcia joined her father.

Soon after their arrival, Thomas made a bid at an estate sale to buy three lots on the southwest corner of Cortez and Carleton Streets. Upon procuring those lots, a two-story frame home was built on the property by Thomas, and there he resided with Marcia until his death in 1905.

On October 8, 1885, Marcia married Edwin Clement Payne in the Prescott Congregational Church. The Journal Miner reported about the wedding, “The bride was beautifully attired and looked quite charming in a gray silk princess dress. The bridegroom is one of Prescott’s most upright and honest young business men, while the bride is a beautiful and accomplished lady, and inherits from her father, who is an old-line Quaker, those sterling qualities of heart."

The couple lived in Prescott until 1886, when they moved to Williamson Valley, where Edwin and his cousin Frank Paine owned a ranch. In 1891, they moved back to Prescott where they permanently resided.

The couple had five children: Edwin C. Payne Jr., Morris Wing Payne, Stanley Thomas Payne, Howell Sherman Payne, and Mary Ruth Payne Todd. In addition to being wife and mother, Marcia was active in the Ladies’ Aid Society, the Monday Club, the Women’s Temperance Union and a member of the Congregational Church.

Marcia’s father and brother, James E. Wing, homesteaded a section of land north of Prescott originally called “Point of Rocks." They renamed their homestead Granite Dells. Jim developed a series of irrigation ditches and became a very successful farmer. With the deaths of Marcia’s father and brother, she inherited both her father’s house in Prescott and the Wing homestead in Granite Dells.

Although she never did much with the Dells, her sons developed it into the famous Granite Dells Swimming Lake and Resort. People came from far and wide to swim in the cool water, to dive like Tarzan out of a cottonwood tree, to climb the granite rocks, and to picnic by the trickling Granite Creek.

Marcia died on February 17, 1928, and was buried in the Mountain View Cemetery. The Journal Miner commented: ”Mrs. Payne has made many warm and lifelong friends during her sojourn in Prescott, and our community regrets the loss of such a good character and strong influence for the better things of life.”

Donors: Grandchildren of Marcia Payne

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