As young men, Henry and his brother were caught illegally mining coal on “their” family farm. Both men fled to avoid prosecution. Henry joined the Prussian army and after his military service, lived in Rotterdam, Netherlands for a year. He eventually arrived in New York in 1847.
Many people felt that the discovery of gold led to the development of the Territorial Government and then ultimately to Arizona becoming a state.
Henry Wickenburg never married
Mrs. Helene Holland, who inherited Henry’s property, received his personal property in 1903, while he was still alive, and the remainder of his estate in 1905 after Henry Wickenburg died from a gunshot wound in the head. His death was deemed a suicide, but many questioned this ruling.
Henry Wickenburg (Johannes Henrichs Wickenburg) was born in Essen, Germany on November 21st, 1819.
Henry Wickenburg’s first Wickenburg home: “Tunnel House” circa 1862. The tunnel was timbered and had a 10x12 foot rock room constructed at one end of it. The tunnel was a get-a-way from the Indians. Henry also kept his perishable food in it.
Henry Wickenburg’s 1864 ranch house and farmland were destroyed by the 1890 Walnut Dam flood.
Henry Wickenburg sold a portion of his original homestead to F.X. O’Brian in 1903. FX Built the ranch house called “La Testa”. It was named for the orchards that were planted and ‘tested’ there. The house still stands and is currently part of the Simpson Ranch along with the remains of the “Tunnel House”.
Henry Wickenburg is credited for planting the palm trees.
Henry Wickenburg’s last home, the Wickenburg-Boetto home built in 1903, is located at 225 S Washington Street.
Henry Wickenburg is buried at the Henry Wickenburg Pioneer Cemetery located off of Howard Court.
Helen Hawkin’s Book- Available for $16 at the Henry Wickenburg Home