In a parched and rugged land, Fredonia is a welcome oasis for residents and travelers. Mormon pioneers drawn to area springs settled here to begin farming and ranching in 1885. But water, like many resources on the Arizona Strip, was scarce. Cisterns and ditchwater kept the town alive until the 1940's when piped-in water first became available.
In 1956, Fredonia became the first incorporated community on the Arizona Strip. Arland Brooksby was the first mayor in 1956. Still thriving after over one hundred years, Fredonia is a testament to the strength and resourcefulness of those willing to cope with life on the frontier. The Paiute name for Fredonia is "Atsika," meaning place where hunters dehorned their deer.
Fredonians took on a unique but unsuccessful fundraising project in the 1920's raising fawns for the government to restock certain areas. The young fawns were caught and brought to town where they were fed on canned milk. Allen Judd remembers "when the fawns were big enough to fend for themselves, the government shipped them out in a big airplane in padded crates; however, once the fawns were set free, they were not able to survive very well. Therefore, the project was discontinued."
The dramatic backdrop of the Vermilion Cliffs may look familiar if you're a western movie buff. Many films and TV programs, including Maverick, Death Valley Days and the 1950's version of Last of the Mohicans have been made in and around Fredonia.