Jim Babbitt
Jim Babbitt

Jim Babbitt was born in Flagstaff, Arizona, in 1948. He is the grandson of C. J. Babbitt, one of the original Babbitt brothers who settled in Flagstaff. He attended college at the University of Notre Dame and Stanford and then worked for Bank of America in California. Jim returned to Flagstaff in 1979 to work in the human resource department of the Babbitt family business and later supervised Babbitt trading post operations. He restored Tuba City Trading Post to its original configuration.

Mary May Bailey
Mary May Bailey

Mary May Bailey was born in Magdalena, New Mexico, in 1921. She moved with her parents Jot Stiles and Marjorie Bowles Stiles to Piñon Trading Post in 1924, when her father went to work for Lorenzo Hubbell. The family later moved to Tuba City, where she attended school and her father acquired a partnership in the Tuba City Trading Post. During World War II, Mary May's father had an interest in 5 different trading posts, including Winslow, Bidahochee, Canyon Diablo, and Castle Butte.

Bill Beaver
Bill Beaver

Bill Beaver was born January 9, 1925, in Los Angeles, California. He moved west with his father who traveled back and forth between California and Oklahoma in the 1930s. Bill spent the summer of 1942 herding sheep on the Hopi Reservation. Drafted in 1943 during World War II, he served in the armed forces throughout the war. He has assembled a number of fine collections of various Indian arts and crafts over the years that are now housed in several museums and fine art establishments. He currently runs Sacred Mountain Trading Post outside of Flagstaff, Arizona.

Paul Begay
Paul Begay

Paul Begay was born near Dinnebito Trading Post, Arizona, around 1952. Born to Gap-in-the-Rock Clan, for Deer Water Clan. His grandparents are Bitter Water and Towering House Clans. He is currently a Navajo language interpreter, Elderhostel lecturer, and storyteller.

Carolyn Blair
Carolyn Blair

Carolyn Blair was born Carolyn Recknagel in New Britain, Connecticut, in1922. After graduating from Teachers College of Connecticut in 1943, she was sent to Teec Nos Pos as a Bureau of Indian Affairs teacher in 1945. She married Bradley Blair in 1946 and moved to Red Mesa Trading Post. In 1965, they moved to Kayenta Trading Post and managed the trading post and Wetherill Inn.

Claudia Blair
Claudia Blair

Claudia Blair was born Claudia Caler in Hindman, Kentucky, in 1928. She was educated at Berea College in Kentucky. Claudia married high school sweetheart Elijah Blair in 1948 and moved to Toadlena Trading Post. Later they went to Mexican Water Trading Post. Claudia then moved to Cortez, Colorado, when her children were school age.

Elijah Blair
Elijah Blair

Elijah Blair was born in McRoberts, Kentucky, in 1927. He worked at Toadlena Trading Post, Mexican Water Trading Post, and Aneth Trading Post before becoming a partner in Aneth Trading Post. Later Elijah owned Dinnebito Trading Post, Kayenta Trading Post, and Wetherill Inn. He currently owns Blair's Dinnebito Trading Post in Page, Arizona. He is a past president and board member of the United Indian Traders Association.

Hank Blair
Hank Blair

Hank Blair was born in Farmington, New Mexico, in 1947. His parents are Bradley Blair and Carolyn Recknagel Blair. Hank grew up at Red Mesa Trading Post and attended high school in Farmington, New Mexico. He joined the Marine Corps in 1966 and served in Vietnam. He worked at Kayenta Trading Post and Wetherill Inn until 1984, when he bought Totsoh Trading Post in Lukachukai, Arizona. He is currently its owner-operator.

Marilene Blair
Marilene Blair

Marilene Blair was born Marilene Bloomfield in Provo, Utah, in 1919. She grew up with her parents George and Lucy Bloomfield and seven brothers and sisters at Toadlena Trading Post. She was educated in a one-room schoolhouse at Toadlena, attended high school in Kirtland, New Mexico, and married Raymond Blair in 1937. Marilene subsequently helped operate Mancos Creek Trading Post, and later they owned and operated Rock Point Trading Post and Round Rock Trading Post.

Bob Bolton
Bob Bolton

Bob Bolton was born in Columbus, Kansas, in 1926. His family moved to New Mexico in 1934. After high school, he enlisted in the United States' Navy and moved to Gallup after his discharge. Bob drove a bus on the reservation for 6 years then worked for Henry Hillson, a wholesale distributor based in Albuquerque. He traveled throughout the reservation selling dry goods and clothing to trading posts. As of 1999, he is a Pendelton blanket wholesaler.

Bruce Burnham
Bruce Burnham

Bruce Burnham was born in Farmington, New Mexico, in 1940. He spent his early childhood at Bisti Trading Post and attended school in Farmington. After release from the United States' Army in 1960, he returned to the reservation, drove a delivery truck, then worked at Red Rock, Aneth, and Dinnebito Trading Posts. He married Virgina Kishkoli Begay in the early 1970s, and they currently own the R.B. Burnham Trading Post in Sanders, Arizona.

Virginia Burnham
Virginia Burnham

Virginia Burnham was born Virginia Kishkoli Begay in Ganado, Arizona. Her parents are Ella Kishkoli Begay and Emerson Horace. Virginia grew up herding sheep and other livestock in a remote, agrarian setting. She was educated in California and married Bruce Burnham in the early 1970s. She is an active jeweler, jewelry manufacturer, and trading post operator in Sanders, Arizona.

Joe Danoff
Joe Danoff

Joe Danoff was born in Los Angeles, California and raised in Gallup, New Mexico. Joe served in the United States' Air Force during both World War II and in Korea. He married Ruth Lee. After Korea he went to Ganado to manage the trading post there for his father-in-law, Art Lee. Joe subsequently bought Ganado Trading Post and became partners on two other trading posts: Low Mountain and Smoke Signal. He ran the Gallup airport for more than 25 years.

Ed Foutz
Ed Foutz

Ed Foutz was born in 1937 in Farmington, New Mexico. He lost his father, Edwin Luff Foutz, to spinal meningitis at Teec Nos Pos Trading Post in 1939. Ed went to work at Teec NosPos for Russell Foutz at age fourteen and bought into the Shiprock Trading Company in 1964. In his career he has handled large quantities of wool, livestock, and artwork. Wholesale rugs are his specialty. He has experienced trading at every level, and is the current president of the United Indian Traders Association.

Jay Foutz
Jay Foutz

Jay Foutz was born in Fruitland, New Mexico, in 1924. He spent his early childhood in Ganado and attended school in Fruitland. Jay worked at Teec Nos Pos after high school. He joined the United States' Navy in 1943 and was discharged in 1945. He settled at Teec Nos Pos and Beclahbeto Trading Posts; he is currently partners with Loyd Foutz.

Loyd Foutz
Loyd Foutz

Loyd Foutz was born in Kirtland, New Mexico, in 1926. He joined the United States' Navy in 1945 and worked at Gallego Trading Post with Russell Foutz after the service. Loyd worked in the oil drilling business before he settled at Teec Nos Pos in 1949 in a partnership deal with Russell Foutz. Eventually he readjusted his partnership of Beclahbeto Trading Post with Jay Foutz.

Russell Foutz
Russell Foutz

Russell Foutz was born in Kirtland, New Mexico, in the early 1900s. He grew up at Teec Nos Pos Trading Post. As a teenager, Russell worked for Progressive Mercantile, a wholesale supply house to other trading posts. He has had extensive experience buying livestock in quantity, and in wholesaling supplies to trading posts and trade goods to other markets. He acquired numerous other trading posts, including an outlet in Scottsdale, Arizona. Russell is a past president and board member of the United Indian Traders Association.

Mildred Heflin
Mildred Heflin

Mildred Heflin was born in Farmington, New Mexico, in 1913. Her parents, O.J. Carson and Jessie Smith Carson, started out ranching but soon took up trading, buying a trading post 30 miles from Farmington at a place now called Carsons. Mildred was educated at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado, and taught on the reservation for a year and a half before she married Rueben Heflin. The Heflins bought Oljato Trading Post and then Shonto Trading Post, where they lived for 10 years. They bought Kayenta Trading Post from John Wetherill and lived there for 15 years.

Grace Herring
Grace Herring

Grace Herring was born in Shiprock, New Mexico, in 1910. She moved to Toadlena Trading Post with her parents George and Lucy Bloomfield in 1911. She grew up with her seven brothers and sisters at Toadlena. She married Charles Herring in the early 1930s and they ran Toadlena Trading Post until 1959.

Evelyn Jensen
Evelyn Jensen

Evelyn Yazzie Jensen was born on Black Mesa, Arizona, in 1954 to the Bit'ahnii Clan and for the Tó'áhaní Clan. After growing up in a remote, agrarian environment, she became a bank manager in Kayenta. She bought Oljato Trading Post in 1991 and is currently its operator.

Edith Kennedy
Edith Kennedy

Edith Kennedy was born in Cheyenne, Oklahoma, in 1919. She was educated in Portales, New Mexico. Edith worked for the Farm Security Administration, Department of Agriculture, in Farmington, New Mexico. She married Troy Kennedy in 1942 when he was in the United States' Air Force. After World War II, they returned to New Mexico and worked at Fruitland Trading Post. The Kennedys bought an interest with Jewel McGee in Red Rock Trading Post in 1948 and worked there until 1992.

J.W. & J.D. Kennedy
J.W. & J.D. Kennedy

John W. & John D. Kennedy: J.W. Kennedy was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in 1912. In 1913 his father built Salina Trading Post. From there the family moved to Chinle Trading Post and then to Rock Springs Trading Post. J.W. worked for Gallup Mercantile as a young man and had extensive experience in wholesale trading, handling large quantities of various merchandise and traveling regularly across the Navajo Reservation. J. D. Kennedy was born in Zuni in 1941 and has followed in his father's footsteps in the wholesale trading business.

Evelyn, Jack, & Snick Lee
Evelyn, Jack, & Snick Lee

Evelyn, Jack, & Snick Lee: Jack Lee was born in Breen, Colorado, in 1917. Evelyn Lee was born in Princeton, Arkansas, in 1918. Their son, Snick, was born in Ganado in 1947. The Lees met in Hawaii when both were in the service during World War II. They moved to L & A Trading Post at Keams Canyon, which they operated for 30 years. Jack's great-grandfather was John D. Lee, a Mormon pioneer who established Lee's Ferry and several trading posts in the 1800s.

Marie Lee
Marie Lee

Marie Lee was born in Aneth, Utah, in 1939. She attended school in Stewart, Nevada. Marie began working at Aneth Trading Post for Elijah Blair in 1960. She started working at Dinnebito Trading Post in 1965 and moved with the store to Page, Arizona, after the Navajo-Hopi relocation. She is currently working for the Blair family.

Bill Malone
Bill Malone

Bill Malone was born in Gallup, New Mexico, in 1939. He attended school in Durango, Colorado. After school he joined the United States' Army and was discharged in 1961. He worked for trader Al Frick at Lupton, Arizona, then worked at Piñon Trading Post for Bill and Cliff McGee for 18 years. Malone has run the Hubbell Trading Post in Ganado, now a National Historic Site, since 1981.

Jack Manning
Jack Manning

Jack Manning was born in Farmington, New Mexico, in 1931 and raised in Shiprock, New Mexico. He worked at Bruce Bernard Trading Post during World War II, then again from 1953 through 1970. In 1968 he and his brother bought the Dickens Trading Post. Today Jack's daughter runs the off-reservation pawn shop that bears their name outside of Farmington.

Jewell McGee
Jewell McGee

Jewel McGee was born in Kirtland, New Mexico, and lived in the Colorado Plateau from 1914-1999. He worked at Tsaya Trading Post after completing high school and then moved to Red Mesa Trading Post. He became a partner in Red Rock Trading Post in Lukachukai, Arizona, in 1933. He traded livestock and was active in strengthening herds through better breeding.

Jewell, Leona, & Lavoy McGee
Jewell, Leona, & Lavoy McGee

Jewel, Leona, & Lavoy McGee: Leona was born in Sanford, Colorado, in 1918. She married Jewel in 1937. Their son Lavoy was born in Farmington and grew up at a trading post before starting school. A past president and board member of the United Indian Traders Association, Lavoy ran Red Mesa Trading Post for many years. He currently owns a pet supply business.

Ruth McGee
Ruth McGee

Ruth McGee was born Ruth Bloomfield in Farmington, New Mexico, in 1917. She grew up with her parents, George and Lucy Bloomfield, and seven brothers and sisters at Toadlena Trading Post. Educated in a one-room schoolhouse until eighth grade, she married Roscoe McGee in 1937 and moved to Red Mesa Trading Post. They moved to Mancos Creek Trading Post in 1939 and she relocated to Farmington when her children reached school age. Roscoe and his brother Jewel were involved in partnerships in several different trading posts.

Paul D. Merrill
Paul D. Merrill

Paul Merrill was born August 6, 1919, in Ramah, New Mexico, where he also attended school. Paul's family had a farm and a boarding house. He worked at the Fort Wingate Trading Post after school. Paul enlisted in the United States' Marines at an early age. After World War II, he returned and bought the trading post from his former boss and over the years expanded the operation a great deal. Eventually it included a grocery store, an automotive supply store, a car dealership, and numerous rental properties.

Betty Rodgers
Betty Rodgers

Betty Rodgers was born near Lukachukai, Arizona, around 1916. She was taken from her family by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and placed at boarding school in Tuba City. Later, Betty was adopted by John and Louisa Wetherill and lived at Kayenta Trading Post. She married Buck Rodgers in the mid-1930s and together they established the Buck Rodgers Trading Post in Cameron, Arizona, which they operated for nearly 40 years.

Jay Springer
Jay Springer

Jay Springer was born at Ganado Presbyterian Hospital (Arizona) in 1935. He grew up at Sunrise Trading Post until he moved to Gallup to attend school. His family eventually owned or partnered in five trading posts -- two Sunrise Trading Posts, Lower Greasewood Trading Post, White Column Trading Post, and Dilkon Trading Post. His father, Harold Springer, an accountant, was a charter member of the United Indian Traders Association, and served as president and treasurer. Jay Springer, also an accountant, is treasurer of the UITA.

JB Tanner
JB Tanner

J. B. Tanner was born in Mesa, Arizona, in 1924. His parents, Rulel (Chunky) and Stella McGee Tanner raised him at Montezuma Creek Trading Post, among others. J. B. operated his first trading post, Steamboat, on his own at age 16. He served in the United States' Air Force during World War II. He has operated numerous other posts over the years, including Ya-Ta-Hey Trading Post and J.B. Tanner's. He and his family founded the Navajo Shopping Center. He is a well-known radio personality and is a descendant of Mormon pioneer Seth Tanner.

Joe Tanner
Joe Tanner

Joe Tanner was born in Farmington, New Mexico, in 1938. He grew up with his parents, Rulel (Chunky) and Stella McGee Tanner in Kirtland, New Mexico, and Durango, Colorado. Joe is the 5th child of 8; his eldest brother is J. B. Tanner. After 8th grade, he went to work for Raymond Blair and Pappy Whit. He later worked for Jewel McGee at Red Rock Trading Post and ran Tocito Trading Post at age 17. He was a partner in Navajo Shopping Center with his family. Joe has been extensively involved in weaving, wool, mohair, yarn, jewelry, mining, and piñons, both at the wholesale and retail levels. He is a descendant of Mormon pioneer Seth Tanner.

Stella Tanner
Stella Tanner

Stella Tanner was born Stella McGee in Kirtland, New Mexico, in 1906. She traveled with her family and 7 siblings from Harrisburg, Utah, to Waterflow, New Mexico, in a covered wagon in 1918. Stella married Rulel (Chunky) Tanner in 1924. They operated several trading posts, including the Navajo Shopping Center with sons J. B. and Joe.

Charles "Bud" Tansey
Charles "Bud" Tansey

Charles "Bud" Tansey was born in Kansas City, Kansas, in 1915. He attended school in Kansas and New Mexico and graduated from law school at Kansas University in 1938. He was admitted to the New Mexico Bar Association in 1939 and practiced in New Mexico throughout his career, except for when he was in the navy for 38 months during World War II. Bud Tansey served as an attorney for both the Navajo tribe and the United Indian Traders Association.

Tobe Turpen
Tobe Turpen

Tobe Turpen Jr. was born in Flagstaff, Arizona, in 1920. His father, Tobe Turpen, started working at Shonto Trading Post in the early 1900s. Tobe joined the MacAdams Company in Gallup, where he began contracting with numerous silversmiths and marketing jewelry on a large scale. Tobe Turpen Jr. entered the business in 1946, running a Gallup trading post owned by his father. Around 1956, Tobe Jr. bought the business and transformed it from a trading post to an arts and crafts store. He has been at his current location outside of Gallup for 52 years.

Sally Wagner
Sallie Wagner

Sallie Lippincott Wagner was born in Wheeling, West Virginia, in 1913. After graduating from college with an anthropology degree, she married Bill Lippincott and moved west in 1938. They bought Wide Ruins Trading Post and eventually Pine Springs Trading Post; they operated the latter until the late 1950s. She is the author of Wide Ruins.

Clarence Wheeler
Clarence Wheeler

Clarence Wheeler was born in Red Mesa, Colorado, in 1927. His grandmother, Harriet Adelta Bingham Wheeler, was a trader. Clarence worked at Smith Lake Trading Post after completing high school. He also worked at Keams Canyon, Polacca, Na-Ah-Tah, and Piñon Trading Posts, among others. He is a past board member of the United Indian Traders Association.

Les Wilson
Les Wilson

Les Wilson was born in California in 1948. He attended college in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and started work at Shonto Trading Post in 1972. Les moved to Many Farms Trading Company in 1976 and Two Grey Hills Trading Post in 1983. In 1986 he bought Two Grey Hills Trading Post, which he currently operates. He is presently a board member of the United Indian Traders Association.

Tom Woodard
Tom Woodard

Tom Woodard was born in Gallup, New Mexico, in 1936. Tom's father, M.L. Woodard, worked for the United Indian Traders Association in the 1930s and bought his own Indian arts and crafts business in the 1950s. M.L. Woodard oversaw silver distribution during World War II. When the UITA divested itself of the silver business after the war, he saw that the profit was invested in AT&T stock, which led to the grants allowing funding of this project and others. Tom Woodard started an Indian arts and crafts store in Tucson in the 1950s. In 1964 he closed that store and has since operated others in Gallup, Scottsdale, and Santa Fe.

Colina Yazzie
Colina Yazzie

Colina Yazzie was born November 26, 1959. Her clan is Tótsohnii. Her father's clan is Ta'neeszahnii and Táchii'nii báshíshchíín dóó Tódích'íi'nii dashinálí. Colina grew up in a small hogan with four brothers and three sisters in the Ganado area. After graduating high school she moved to Dallas, Texas, and trained for the airlines but due to homesickness returned and began working in the Hubbell Trading Post in Ganado. Eventually she married Raymond C. Yazzie and together they operate Yazzie's Indian Art Store in Gallup, New Mexico.

Raymond C. Yazzie
Raymond C. Yazzie

Raymond Yazzie was born in Vanderwagen, New Mexico, near Gallup. His clan is Bit'ahnii, and his father's is Tódík'ózhí. His grandparents are Kinyaa'áanii and Tsi'naajinii. Raymond grew up in a hogan with a family of 12. His parents were both silversmiths, and Raymond began working as an apprentice silversmith for Joe Tanner as a youth. At age 14 he collaborated on a piece that won Best of Show at the Intertribal Ceremonial and from there went on to win numerous awards for silversmithing. He is now married to Colina Yazzie and together they operate Yazzie's Indian Art Store in Gallup, New Mexico.


Peterson Zah

Peterson Zah was born in Keams Canyon, Arizona, in 1937. His grandfather, Guy Malteen, was a carpenter, miner, and brother to Scott Preston, a chairman of the Navajo Nation. Peterson graduated from Arizona State University in the early 1960s and returned to the Navajo Nation as a teacher and coach. Later he became a construction estimator in the building of new schools, trained VISTA volunteers, and was advisor to the DNA, the first Navajo legal aid program. He served as chairman of the Navajo Nation in the 1980s, and currently works as a special advisor at Arizona State University.