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HUBBELL TRADING POST

The Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site is located in Ganado, Arizona, about one hour northwest of Gallup, New Mexico.  Admission is free to the trading post.  Tours of the Hubbell home are $2 for adults, under 16 years old are free.  It is well worth the time to visit this famous trading establishment started by John Lorenzo Hubbell around 1878.  Literate in both Spanish and English, Hubbell obtained early experience in business affairs working for the Albuquerque Post Office and for his father, whose military connections helped him secure a contract to deliver hay to Fort Wingate in Navajo country.  He hired local Navajos to cut the native grass and soon began learning their language.  He also gained experience clerking for pioneer traders at Fort Wingate and at Kanab, Utah.  In 1874 Hubbell was assigned to accompany Navajo leader Ganado Mucho on a mission to Utah to investigate the killing of three young Navajos.  Hubbell soon began to be active in politics and was elected sheriff and later to the territorial House of Representatives for many terms.  Hubbell formed a partnership with C. N. Cotton and together they expanded the trading post operations by buying huge quantities of wool from the Navajos.  This allowed for extensive trading and sales of Navajo rugs.  Eventually Hubbell was granted title to the 160 acres around the trading post although this area was within the Navajo Reservation.  Hubbell became known among the Navajos for his hospitality and generosity as well as for providing employment to many Navajos.  Hubbell's health deteriorated and when he died in 1930, his children took over the business and continued its operations until 1967 when all the holdings were sold to the National Park Service.  The Hubble Trading Post remains the oldest, continuously operating trading post on the Navajo Nation.  For more information, visit their website at:  http://www.nps.gov/hutr/index.htm


Source material for this story:  Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site by David M. Brugge.

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