Great Grandfather J.E. Thompson (1875-1950) used to vacation at a cabin in the White Mountains on a plateau about 1,000 feet above the town of Greer, Ariz. Great grandfather called the small, one-room building far from civilization his “hunting shack.”
Unfortunately, the cabin burned a few years ago, leaving only a concrete foundation, the two-oven wood-burning cook stove, and some scraps of metal roof. Fortunately, a Forest Service geologist, Robert Oldfield, took pictures of the cabin before it burned.
Oldfield made an assay of the house and land, which is at 8,800 feet, southwest of Big Lake, when the Forest Service was negotiating to buy the plot and add it to the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest, which surrounds the plot of land, reports intrepid local historian Sylvia Lee.
“Because he built his house in that meadow, a pretty little stream just upstream was named Thompson Creek,” says Lee. “A Forest Service trail that follows the creek is called the Thompson Trail.”
J.E. owned a much grander lodge in Greer, where he used to take the family on vacation. The lodge was eventually renamed Turner’s Lodge. It was later vandalized and accidentally burned to the ground. More on the lodge later.