Jean Cousins and Sallie Lippincott

In her wonderful and informative book “Tales From Wide Ruins: Jean and Bill Cousins, Traders”, author Mary Tate Engels describes vividly how Jean Lunceford, who was the child of a single mother, grew up in the 1920s in Chinle, Arizona when her mother Cordelia accepted a teaching position there.  Cordelia was an extraordinary woman who pursued an education and career after her daughter’s birth despite many obstacles.  Later, Jean married Bill Cousins whose father was one of the first Indian Traders in the area.  Bill went into the trading post business as well, and Jean worked by her husband’s side for almost 15 years at two trading posts The Borego Trading Post and Wide Ruins, which is located near Chambers, AZ and benefited from the proximity to Route 66.  Wide Ruins sent Navajo rugs, jewelry and curios to stores and Harvey Houses in Gallup and Holbrook via the Mother Road, which in turn brought tourists and important visitors like Ansel Adams to this authentic trading post.



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