Tag Archives: mount graham observatory

Ola Cassadore Davis was a clarion voice for Apaches

10 Jan

Ola Cassadore Davis, a member of the San Carlos Apache Tribe, fought against the Mount Graham Observatory, saying building the telescopes hurt the sacred land. By Dr. Robin Silver

By Connie Cone Sexton / Arizona Republic

Day after day, the elder of the San Carlos Apache Tribe saw the eyes of her people fill with tears.

It was spring 1991, and Ola Cassadore Davis was attempting something mentally and physically exhausting, trying to protect Mount Graham from the erection of multimillion-dollar telescopes.

House by house, Davis, the great-granddaughter of an Apache chief, walked the reservation, sharing news that the University of Arizona wanted to build an observatory on the mountain.

She had grown up on the San Carlos Reservation, not far from the southeastern Arizona mountain, the place where as a child she had gone to sing and pray. The place where Apache crown dancers dwelled, where warriors were buried in unmarked graves and medicine men went to learn healing.

Davis believed Mount Graham was sacred, not the place to build an observatory. Continue reading