Charles Trumbull Hayden

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Charles Trumbull Hayden

Birthdate: (74)
Birthplace: Haydens, Windsor Township, Hartford County, Connecticut, United States
Death: February 5, 1900 (74)
Country home 1-1/2 miles east, Tempe, Maricopa County, Arizona Territory, United States (Catarrhal infection.)
Place of Burial: Tempe, Maricopa County, Arizona, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Joseph Trumbull Hayden and Mary Hayden
Husband of Sallie Calvert Hayden
Father of Sen. Carl Hayden (D-AZ); Sallie Davis Hayden; Anna Spenser Hayden and Mary Louisa Calvert McEllherren

Occupation: Probate Judge, businessman, early settler of Tempe, Arizona
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Charles Trumbull Hayden

Charles Trumbull Hayden (April 4, 1825 – February 5, 1900) was an American businessman and probate judge. His influence was felt in the development of Arizona Territory where he helped found both the city of Tempe and Arizona State University. Hayden is also known as the father of U.S. Senator Carl Hayden.


Hayden was born on April 4, 1825 in Haydens, Windsor Township, Hartford, Connecticut to Joseph and Mary Hanks Hayden. He was the descendant of English settlers who had come over in 1630 and settled in the Connecticut River valley. Hayden's father died when he was six, leaving himself and his sister Anna to help his mother run the family farm. He completed his education at 16 and worked as a clerk for several years before leaving home in 1843. His departure was motivated in part by a lung ailment.

From Connecticut Hayden went to New York City, where he studied law, before beginning a series of teaching jobs in Kentucky, Indiana, and Missouri. While in Kentucky, Hayden was influenced by Henry Clay's vision of opening the West to settlement by the development of roads and canals. By 1847, he was working as a teamster hauling freight on the Santa Fe Trail.

Following ratification of the Gadsden Purchase, Hayden established a store in Tubac which served the nearby mines. By 1860, he had moved to Tucson and according to census records had assets worth US$20,000. In addition to working as a merchant, Hayden also worked as a freighter and civic leader. With the creation of Arizona Territory, he added mail contractor to his list of duties. Finally, he was appointed a probate judge by Governor Goodwin and he achieved the title "judge".

Hayden remained in Tucson until 1873 when he moved to the Salt River valley. Local legend claims that while he was on a business trip from Tucson to Prescott, flood waters on the Salt River delayed him near the present location of Tempe, Arizona for several days. Using this time to explore the site, Hayden saw the potential to develop a new town at the site. In December 1870, Hayden published a notice claiming two sections along the south side of the Salt River "for milling, farming, and other purposes". He used the land to build a cable ferry, grist mill, general store, and other related businesses.

On October 4, 1876, at the age of 51, Hayden married Arkansas-born schoolteacher Sallie Davis in Nevada City, California. The couple would have four children, Carl Trumbull, Sallie Davis, Anna Spenser, and Mary "Mapes" Calvert. Anna died when two-and-a-half years old while the three other children reached maturity.

Politically, Hayden made an unsuccessful run to be Arizona Territory's Congressional Delegate in 1874. This was followed in 1884 when Grover Cleveland considered him for Governor of Arizona Territory. In 1885, Hayden succeeded in having a former employee, John S. Armstrong, elected to the 13th Arizona Territorial Legislature. Believing the territory's need lie primarily in educating new teachers, Hayden used his connection with Armstrong to lobby for the Territorial Normal School. Hayden even favored the normal school over the fiscally more lucrative insane asylum, arguing "Stockton, California was known to most people only as the place where insane people are confined" and that Tempe should not risk gaining a similar reputation. The normal school established in Tempe is now Arizona State University.

Hayden remained in Tempe for the rest of his life and died on February 5, 1900.


Obituary in the Phoenix (Arizona) Republican of Tuesday morning, Feb. 6, 1900:

Passing of a Pioneer: Death of Charles Trumbull Hayden last night

News was received in Phoenix late last night of the death of Mr. Charles Trumbull Hayden, at 9:05 o'clock, at his country residence one and a half miles east of Tempe. Mr. Hayden had been in feeble health for some time, suffering from a catarrhal infection, and about 8 days ago he was confined to his bed by the advance of the disease. He was given the best of attention, but his system was too greatly weakened by age to resist the acute attack.

His daughter Sarah, now in San Francisco, was summoned at once and is expected to arrive on Wednesday's train. Though arrangements have not yet been announced, it is probable the funeral will be held on Wednesday.

Deceased was a native of Connecticut and 77 years of age. He leaves a wife and three children to mourn the loss of a kind and indulgent husband and father. The eldest child, Carl, recently assumed control of his father's business in Tempe. The second child is Miss Sarah, referred to above, and the youngest, Noma, residing at home.

Mr. Hayden's career has been an active one and the latter half of his life was spent in the development of the resources of Arizona, which has been his home practically since the close of the Civil War. Like the journeyings of most of Arizona's early settlers, his first pioneering was in California in the days of gold. On coming to Arizona, he settled first in Tucson, later removing to the present site of Tempe where he established a flour mill, which through all the years to present day has continued its ceaseless grind, the motive power being the time-honored water wheel turned by the flow of a canal taken from the river a short distance above. He also opened a mercantile house in connection and around these enterprises grew up the little village then officially known as Hayden's Ferry, later changed to Tempe.

In the course of his residence there, he built one or two of the smaller south side canals by his own enterprise and aided materially in the construction of the larger waterways. He has probably given employment to more men than any other resident of the south side - perhaps of the county. Like all men of accomplishment, he has had his critics, but none can deny that his unceasing effort has been for industrial development and he has done his full part in the great work of conquering the desert. During his business experience at one time or another many of the most valuable properties on the south side have been in his possession, and in the changing tide of affairs, passed on to others. He has met with frequent business reverses, but never dreamed of giving way to discouragement, and each failure has been marked by returning prosperity, the Hayden store at Tempe being now one of the largest establishments there.

In education and social and political matters, he has ever taken a deep interest, though usually reserved in his participation. Though holding pronounced political views, he seldom mingled in the whirl of politics, though in the early days he was at one time a candidate for delegate to Congress. In his passing away, Tempe has lost her oldest resident, a citizen whom all respected, and in his death many will feel a personal bereavement.

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Charles Trumbull Hayden's Timeline

April 4, 1825
Windsor Township, Hartford County, Connecticut, United States
October 2, 1877
Age 52
Hayden's Ferry, Maricopa County, Arizona Territory, United States
Age 54
March 3, 1883
Age 57
November 21, 1886
Age 61
February 5, 1900
Age 74
Tempe, Maricopa County, Arizona Territory, United States
Tempe, Maricopa County, Arizona, United States