Posts Tagged ‘Marty Robbins’

Arizona’s Liberty Bell

July 2, 2010

Just one of Arizona museums many memory trips in its celebration of its centennial as a state is its Liberty Bell. The 2,080-pound bell was one of fifty-three replica liberty bells cast by a French foundry in 1950. During that year, U.S. Treasury Secretary John W. Snyder presented them to each of the forty-eight contiguous states and five territories to promote a U.S. savings-bonds drive. As part of that program, the Arizona bell was paraded throughout the state from May 15 through July 4, 1950. Representatives from the Treasury Department’s Savings Bonds Division conferred with officials of the various States, Territories, and the District of Columbia to make arrangements for turning over the bells. The arrangements included plans for the organization of proper ceremonies to mark the occasion. The replica Liberty Bells are identical in size, weight, manufacturing process, legends and markings, and tonal quality, with the original Liberty Bell in Philadelphia. Each bell with its mounting stands about six feet high is twelve feet in circumference around the lip, and seven and one-half feet around the crown. 

            Local Savings Bonds volunteer organizations in the various states arranged for receptions and tours for the bells. The donors of money and material for the Liberty Bells included the Anaconda Copper Mining Company, Kennecott Copper Corporation, Phelps-Dodge Corporation, American Smelting & Refining Company, the American Metal Company, Ltd. and the Miami Copper Company. The Ford Motor Company supplied forty-nine red, white and blue trucks which took the bells on the tour of the states. The United States Steel Corporation’s American Bridge Company provided the standards, stays and hardware for mounting the bells on the trucks. Individual truck operators within the States paid the salaries of the drivers. Standard Oil Company of New Jersey contributed the oil and gasoline required by the trucks.

            Fifty-three bells were cast for the Bond Drive, however, it appears that three more were cast, according to the remarks that Secretary of the Treasury Snyder made at a luncheon in Independence on November 6, 1950 when the Bell was presented to Independence, Missouri. Snyder states that, in addition to the fifty-three bells made as part of the original project, he arranged to have the bell made that General Douglas MacArthur presented to Japan (#54), he presented another bell to the town of Annecy, France (#55) where the bells were cast, and he presented a bell from the people of Annecy to Independence, Missouri (#56). The bells were cast at the Sons of Georges Paccard Foundry in Annecy-le-Vieux, France, in 1950.  The bell that was given to Independence, Missouri by the people of Annecy was dedicated on November 6, 1950, and President Harry S Truman was present for the dedication. After the Truman Library was built (1957) the Bell was moved to the Truman Library grounds and rededicated in 1959. The inscription accompanying the Liberty Bell on the grounds of the Truman Library reads

DEDICATED TO YOU, A FREE CITIZEN IN A FREE LAND

           Arizona Capitol Museum, 1700 W. Washington, Phoenix, Arizona 85007, Tel: (602) 926-3620, Fax (602) 256-7985, Web Site: http://www.lib.az.us/museum/

Marty Robbins Museum

May 17, 2010

Arizona Museums: A Journey Into Arizona’s Memory celebrates Arizona’s Centennial with a diversity of music. Some of its most beautiful music was written and sung by its beloved musician, Marty Robbins. The Friends of Marty Robbins Museum in Willcox displays the private collection of Juanita Buckley and her son Shawn P. Ring. Rex Allen Jr., whose father is featured in the museum next door, invited Juanita to move her extensive collection of Marty Robbins memorabilia to Willcox. Here the visitor can listen and purchase music CD’s and DVD’s in the gift shop and learn about Marty Robbins. The photograph exhibits lining the walls document Marty Robbins’ family and professional life. Don’t miss the museum’s wonderful exhibit of Man Walks Among Us. This song, written and performed by Marty Robbins, is from the from the 1963 Columbia film Return of the Gunfighter. Bob Nolan described this song as ‘one of the great nature songs.’ This is high praise from a man who wrote Cool Water and Tumbling Tumbleweeds.  

Marty Robbins was born in Glendale, Arizona on September 26, 1925, to John G. and Emma Heckle Robinson. His father played a harmonica, his grandfather Texas Bob Heckle was a story teller and a Texas Ranger.  Marty chose to join the Navy at the age of seventeen instead of graduating from high school. When World War II broke out, he saw action in the South Pacific. It was while he was in the Navy that he taught himself to play the guitar and before long he was composing music and entertaining the troops. He could always sing and most of the time he made up songs as he went.

After his discharge from the Navy, Marty returned to Glendale where he married Marizona Baldwin on September 28, 1948 in Parker, Arizona. Their first child, Ronald Carson Robinson, was born July 16, 1949. After his discharge from the Navy, he played at local venues in Phoenix, before moving on to host his own radio station show on KTYL. He eventually hosted his own television show on KPHO in Phoenix. After Little Jimmy Dickens made a guest appearance on Robbins’ TV show, he got Robbins a record deal with Columbia. Marty’s beautiful voice made him a natural for the plaintive ballads that he wrote about Arizona. He had an amazing vocal range, which went from deep, brooding lows to the lilting tenor.     He became the first country entertainer to receive a Grammy and he went on to win two Grammys: one for El Paso, one for My Woman My Woman My Wife. He joined the Grand Ole Opry show in 1951 and moved to Nashville a year later. Marty was the last to play at the Ryman Opry House and the first to play at the new Opry House. He was the first to receive a Golden Guitar Award and the Decade Award. Robbins’s 1957 recording of A White Sport Coat and a Pink Carnation sold over one million copies, and he was awarded a gold disc. He received the Country Music Hall Of Fame Award in October 1982, less than two months before he died.

Because of his beautiful voice, people don’t realize that he also starred in both English and Spanish movies. His movies include: The Badge of Marshal Brennan (1957),  Ballad of a Gunfighter (1964), Buffalo Gun (1961), Country Music (1972),  El Aventurero de Medianoche (1982), El Sueño de Mi Vida (1982), Guns of a Stranger (1973), Hell on Wheels (1967),

The Friends of Marty Robbins Museum, 156 N. Railroad Avenue, Willcox AZ 85643 Tel: 520-766-1404