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 • Grant County
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John A "Gus" Chenowth
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Birth: Oct. 4, 1834
Illinois, USA
Death: Apr. 13, 1913
Grant County
New Mexico, USA

obit: J. A. Chenowth, aged 74, died at his home in the San Simon Valley in southern Grant County last friday night of infirmities due to old age.

Deceased was born in Tennessee October 5, 1934; went to Arkansas with his parents when nine years of age and crossed the plains to Californis in 1854 where he lived in Tulare County. In 1865 he went to Arizona, living in and around Phoenix. It was there he was married. In 1881 he moved to San Simon Valley in southern Grant County, New Mexico, which has been his home ever since, He was the father of ten children, six boys and four girls, who with his wife survive him
By W. Lane Rogers/for the Range News

Published: Wednesday, May 6, 2009 3:00 PM CDT

In 1854, Gus Chenowth crossed the Chiricahuas en route to California. He hauled logs on the Feather River, but soon returned to Arizona where he employed teams and wagons to freight from Colorado steamers at La Paz to Prescott.

Chenowth earned an unbecoming reputation when he led whiskey-soaked men in a raid on sleeping Yavapais. More than half of the 30 Indians perished. An army investigator called it "cold-blooded cowardly murder." But Gus got away with it.

By 1869, Chenowth changed headquarters and freighted from the Salt River Valley to the lower Colorado. He helped build the first dam and irrigation canal, and numbered among those who established Phoenix. When he ran for sheriff his opponent dropped out of the race-dead. Gus claimed self-defense and got away with it. He, too, dropped out of the race and left town.

He went to Maricopa with Mary, a young bride with a religious bent. Gus then became a man who quoted scripture as readily as he pulled a trigger.

When railroading made horse freighting difficult, the Chenowth's headed for what became Cochise County. Gus freighted lumber from the Huachucas to Tombstone and Galeyville, settling at the latter in 1881.

It was a bad decision. The mine played out, the smelter was hauled to Benson, and the town disappeared. There was no chance of that happening when he relocated to the San Simon about 1882. All that was there were scattered ranches and cattle outfits, a few mines-and Apaches.

Apaches posed a problem. When inclined to raid, settlers massed for mutual protection within a waist-high adobe corral on the Chenowth ranch. At other times, folks were not always neighborly.

Accustomed to doing county business in Tombstone, Gus and Mary had lived on the ranch a couple of years when they discovered it was a mile over the line in New Mexico. They decided it was a tolerable misfortune.

The Chenowth's raised a large brood, each as self-reliant as the parents. Two sons, Howard and Hale, had tempers like their father's. Both lived a while at the penitentiary after shortening the lives of other men. Daughter Eula buried three husbands before she married a fourth. She was noted for claiming water rights from the community ditch at the barrel of a rifle.

After the Chenowth's passed on, legend persisted that Gus distilled the best whiskey in the San Simon Cienega. Even revenue agents thought so.
children not linked below:
Orlena May [August 17, 1873- January 05, 1877]
Ida P., Henry Lee [June 25, 1875-September 29, 1876]
Ivy Pearl Bisbee [August 02, 1877- May 07, 1911]
Karl Murray [May 22, 1886-December 02, 1889]
Mary Frances Simmons [September 16, 1888-January 07, 1980]
Eula Lee [November 19, 1889-August 1935]
Isaac Earl [December 29, 1891-August 23, 1923] 
Family links: 
  Mary M. Chenowth (1851 - 1943)
  Charles A. Chenowth (1879 - 1948)*
  Howard P. Chenowth (1881 - 1947)*
  Loyola Agnes Chenowth Martyr (1882 - 1978)*
  Clive Hale Chenowth (1884 - 1935)*
  Robert Graham Chenowth (1893 - 1978)*
*Calculated relationship
Chenowth Cienega Ranch Cemetery
Grant County
New Mexico, USA
Created by: Jon Egge
Record added: Dec 23, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 45742087
John A Gus Chenowth
Added by: Jon Egge
John A Gus Chenowth
Added by: Jon Egge
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 Added: Apr. 5, 2017
JOHN ADDISON 'GUS'6 CHENOWETH (JOHN AUGUSTUS5, NICHOLAS4, JOHN3, RICHARD2, JOHN1) was born October 04, 1834 in Illinois, and died April 25, 1913 in San Simon Valley, Grant Co., NM. He married MARY MARTIN MURRAY August 10, 1871 in Maricopa Co., Arizona T...(Read more)
- Jon Egge
 Added: Dec. 23, 2009

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