Giant Kachina Guards Carefree Subdivision
CAREFREE – The world’s largest kachina is a 39-footer that stands guard over the Tonto Hills subdivision about several miles north of downtown Carefree. This giant Hopi legend weighs 14.5 tons and took four months to complete. E.V. Graham, the subdivision’s developer, had it built as an inducement to get his wife to move onto the property, which at that time was way out in the country.
The statue, located on Old Mine Road off the Carefree Highway, is composed of nine concrete sections. They were poured beforehand, then assembled and painted on the site. Designs of Hopi-raised vegetables were cast into the base of the figure, accurately indicating the four points of the compass.
The work was designed by Philip Sanderson and engineered by Carl Ludlow, both of Phoenix. And here’s the best part – there’s no admission fee to view this man-made wonder.
Holy cow! How have I missed this all these years?? Thanks, Sam!!
Sam, do you have a date for when the Kachina was put in place? I’m pretty sure it was already there in 1960. Just curious.
Hi Sara, I connected with Sam, and he thinks it was put there in 1972, but he can’t find anyone to verify that. He just has the word of a local who talked to him back in 2006.
OK. I lived out there in Cave Creek from 1971-73, but I may just be remembering something else – a large sign or some other similar symbol that predated that Kachina.
So, here’s another question: Is that developer (E.V. Graham) connected to Graham County and the Grahams of Pleasant Valley War fame?
Thanks to both you and Sam.
As near as I can determine, there is no connection. EV Graham the developer arrived here much later than the man after whom Graham County is named. But I’ll keep checkikng.
In the ’60s, I knew a Tewksbury descendent, so I was thinking it might not be impossible for a Graham descendant to have been kicking around down in the Valley, too. Plus, I always like to make as much trouble as I possibly can. 😀