Graham County Arizona Chamber Commerce

Pictorial Map of Gila Valley, Arizona

Pictorial map of Gila valley, Arizona

DESCRIPTION: Rare, humorous pictorial map of Gila Valley, Graham County, Arizona- The Valley of Smiles, circa 1940, drawn by artist Hal Empie. The map, on the verso of a folding brochure, shows pictograms reflecting Western culture all designed to attract visitors to the Gila Valley. At upper right the Gila Cliff Dwellings. Contains an interesting compass rose composed of Native American Indian Artifacts.

Towns included along Hwy. 70 as it follows the Gila River include: Bylas, Geronimo, Fort Thomas, Ashurst, Glenbar, Pima, Thatcher, and Safford, the seat for Graham County.

There were apparently two editions of this brochure, only one copy of the other (earlier ?) brochure with map was found online. No copy of this map or brochure found in WorldCat.

Hal Empie
(1909 - 2002)

Hart Haller (Hal) Empie, a multifaceted American creative, left an indelible mark on the art world as a painter, cartoonist, and illustrator. His most celebrated works captured the essence of the American Southwest, vividly depicting its landscapes, inhabitants, and unique character. Hal Empie, was born near Safford, Arizona to pioneer settlers Allie and Hart Empie. Hal pursued his education at the University of Arizona in pre-med and later at the Capitol College of Pharmacy in Denver, Colorado.

Hal Empie's artistic career flourished alongside his pharmaceutical pursuits. Hal briefly studied old master techniques under European master Frederic Taubes. His talent quickly gained national recognition, leading to invitations from prestigious institutions such as The Museum of Modern Art, the Polish Embassy, and the Los Angeles County Museum. The American Federation of Arts in Washington D.C. acknowledged his work when he was still in his twenties.

As a cartoonist, Hal created the famous Empie Kartoon Kards, the first western cartoon postcard copyright, and contributed significantly to early issues of Arizona Highways (magazine). His postcards were marketed in thirty-eight states, with original printings housed in the Archives Center, National Museum of American History, and The Smithsonian.

CREATOR: Graham County Arizona Chamber Commerce




CONDITION: Good.  A bit of wear but clean and intact.



SIZE: 20 " x 9 "


PRICE: $315


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