It’s Rattlesnake Season

Here’s a shout-out to some of Arizona’s beautiful and fascinating creatures.

Now is the time of year when rattlesnakes are active during daylight hours, enjoying the beautiful sunny spring weather, warming up after a winter of brumation. As the weather gets hotter, they become more active at night. They are experts at camouflage, so watch where you walk, reach when you are in their natural habitat. Keep a close eye on your curious dog as well. It’s a good idea to carry a flashlight at night and keep the volume low on your earbuds so that you might hear the tell-tale sign of their warning rattle.

Living with Rattlesnakes, Arizona Game and Fish Department

The Arizona Game and Fish Department website Living with Rattlesnakes provides help in identifying Arizona’s rattlesnake species. Searching the Arizona State Parks website for ‘rattlesnakes’ gets you information on where you might see them during your explorations.

The State of Arizona Research Library has many resources on rattlesnakes. Those online and on the Arizona Memory Project include advice on how to be safe around venomous reptiles, scientific studies from the Arizona Game & Fish Department, photographs, and publications from the United States Geological Survey on reducing rattlesnake-human conflicts. Our print collection offers books and reports on species of rattlesnakes, ecology and other scientific studies, stories and reminiscences from Arizona history, and federal publications.

April typically an active month for rattlesnakes, Arizona Game and Fish Department

Reading Arizona offers free eBooks and audiobooks. Rattlesnake resources include children’s books, scientific guides, Arizona history, and rattlesnakes as characters in novels!

If you are bitten by a rattlesnake, call 911 or head to the nearest emergency room as soon as possible. Envenomated pets should be immediately transported to the nearest emergency veterinary clinic. Do not bring the rattlesnake with you. Medical personnel do not need the rattlesnake to know how to treat the patient- the same antivenom is used regardless of the rattlesnake species. Do not cut open or suck on the puncture wounds and do not use a tourniquet. All of these are old-wives’ tales that are no longer supported by medical research.

Also, please don’t do this:

Or this:

Law and State Government Research

If you’re looking for information about Arizona state government or Arizona law, we have a great place for you to start.

state seal

We’ve assembled a collection of state agency histories that summarize many of the agencies, boards, and commissions that work to carry out laws enacted by the State Legislature. There are currently almost 150 agencies, boards, and commissions, both current and repealed or absorbed, on our website.

Each history provides a revision date so you can tell how current the information is. Attempts are made to update the histories on an annual basis, with an exception for those that no longer exist. Agencies led by an elected official (eg., Governor’s Office, Secretary of State) are not included.

The histories are in alphabetical order and are also searchable not only by title, but by the information within each history.

agency hx

You can start here for the statutes that authorized the agency, a description of the work it does, whether it is headed by an executive director or board. You can also read about how its responsibilities have changed over time, and a list of statutes, regulations, audits, websites, and other useful information. Links are provided where possible so that researchers can view the primary resource for themselves.

That’s a good place to start.

But if you need assistance, you can always reach us Monday through Friday 8am-4pm at the Polly Rosenbaum History and Archives Building, by calling us at (602)926-3270, or by sending us your question.

Happy researching!

New Arizona Historic Newspapers Now Online!

Two historic Arizona newspapers, the Winslow Mail (Winslow, AZ) and El Mosquito (Tucson, AZ), are now available to the public on the Library of Congress’ Chronicling America website. The newspapers represent the first 10,000 pages of over 100,000 pages to be digitized through a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) as part of the National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP).

Winslow MailThe Winslow Mail delivered general news of northern Arizona and the Santa Fe Railway, as well as ranching and agricultural news. It is now available online from 1897 to 1926.

In 1897, John F. Wallace was the editor and publisher. Known fondly as “Uncle Jimmy,” Wallace participated in local politics, and his political interests permeated the Mail. After 1901, the Winslow Mail shifted hands several times. Owners and editors included Lloyd C. Henning from the Holbrook Argus and L.V. Root, a former editor of the Needles Nugget in California. The Winslow Mail was published for 113 years, ceasing operations in 2007.

El Mosquito

El Mosquito, was a weekly Spanish-language newspaper helmed by editor and publisher Felipe Hale. It delivered general local news, news from Mexico, and humorous columns to its Tucson, Arizona audience. It was also known for its sharp tongue and lively writing. Its slogan, appearing in its first few years of publication, was “Pica, pero no hace roncha” (“It stings, but it doesn’t leave a mark.”) El Mosquito ran from 1919-1925, the paper’s entire run is available online.

In 2017, the Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records received a grant as part of the National Digital Newspaper Program to begin this digitization work. The newspapers will also be available on the Arizona Memory Project website in the near future.

The State of Arizona Research Library is excited to make these historic newspapers digitally available to the public. Look for additional newspaper titles to be available online soon!