ME Riggs     Mary Frances (Riggs) Stark.jpg



On 21 May 1872 Mary Frances was born in Las Animas County Colorado.  She was the 3rd girl 7th child of Brannick and Mary.  Mary was 5 years old when they left Colorado.  Like the younger children, she rode in the wagon driven by her mother as they traveled from Colorado to the Sulphur Springs valley.  



    Although the Riggs family had started a school in Colorado, Mary being 5 years old when they left may not have attended school there.  She was 9 years old when the El Dorado school was started at Home Ranch so she and her siblings attended school there.  In 1893, Mary graduated from a Teachers Course at the Northern Indiana Normal School in Valparaiso, Indiana.  I don’t know if she ever taught school. 


Arizona Range News

Tuesday, 7 Jan 1896

Miss Mary Riggs, now a student at the University at Tucson, spent the holidays with her parents at the ranch and returned to her studies at the University Sunday.




    T.B. and W.A. Stark, brothers, had come to the Sulphur Springs Valley area from Missouri.  The Stark brothers met, courted and married the Riggs sisters.  William A. Stark was 19 years older than Mary Frances Riggs when they married.

Tombstone Prospector

21 Dec 1896

   Probate Judge today issued licenses permitting the following named persons to wed . . . . W. A. Stark to Mary Riggs . . . .

31 Mr William Stark and Mary was married hereJanuary 1th     1897 

11          they went to mosury       a snow storm

Arizona Range News

5 Jan 1897

One of the most interesting events which it has been our privileged to record for some time was the marriage on New Years eve of Mr. Wm. A. Stark, the well known stockman, to Miss Mary Riggs, daughter of that sterling citizen and veteran cattle-grower, Mr. B. Riggs.  The wedding took place at the residence of the bride's parents at Brannick and a large number of invited guests shared in the festivities appropriate to the occasion.  The ceremony was performed by Justice W. F. Nichols in his happiest style and hearty congratulations were tendered by all present.  The happy pair drove to town the following day and left on the morning of the 2d inst. for a protracted visit at the old home of Mr. Stark in Missouri.  The best wishes of the news accompanied Mr. and Mrs. Stark on their journey.

December 241896         Mr and Mrs Pursley

    The Pursley’s were ranching neighbors.  They were friends of the W.A. Starks and were living in Safford at the time of the wedding.


Graham Guardian

1 Jan 1897

   Mr. And Mrs. Jas. Pursley left Tuesday for Riggs ranch to attend the Stark -- Riggs wedding. 


    Their children are Harold Kinzie, William Frank, Mary Eunice and John Riggs Stark.  The family lived in Safford when the first 3 children were born.  W.A. and Mary had a farm there.  He also ran a store in Solomonville.

    For a time they owned and lived at the “Ten” ranch which is located about halfway between Safford and the Riggs settlement. 

I went to Mr Starksthe 15 of october on the gila

Sayed until 14 of November         had a good time there

     W.A. and Mary Stark lived near Solomonville.


Arizona Range News

19 April 1899

Wm. A. Stark, who recently sold his Safford farm to ex-Supervisor Hayes, has purchased land near the Groesbeck Hotel on which to build a new residence.



    The case of W.A. Stark vs. Joseph Garner over the rich strike at Mr. Stark's "10" ranch last winter was dismissed, a compromise having been effected.

10 October 1906           Mr WA Stark got Sold his 10 ranch

Arizona Range News

Friday, 29 Jun 1917

Mr. and Mrs. W.A. Stark and three sons of Long Beach arrived Friday of last week to spend the summer at the Home Ranch in El Dorado.  They motored from Long Beach, making the trip in seven days and came through without any auto trouble.  They stated that the trip from Black Canyon near Prescott to Phoenix afforded the most beautiful scenery they ever saw and that El Dorado seemed fully as cool as Long Beach did the day they left.  They look forward to their summer among their relatives and our valley with pleasure.



    Mary passed away 2 February 1961.  She is buried in the Riggs Family Cemetery.

(Riggs Family Cemetery location, row 4 headstone h)