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Babbitt and Roberts Trading Post Records

Identifier: MSS-435-BC

Scope and Content

The collection consists of ledgers and ledger sheets, day books, receipt books, inventory, and cash sheets from Babbitt and Roberts Trading Post at Antelope Springs, AZ, in the Jeddito Valley. The ledgers record sales and trade of groceries, hardware, wool, livestock, sheep, etc. One of the ledgers records transactions with Indians. A cassette tape containing an interview conducted by David Brugge with Wilmer Roberts in 1977 is included in Box 1 of the collection.


  • 1919-1977
  • Majority of material found in 1919-1951


Language of Materials


Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Copy Restrictions

Limited duplication of CSWR material is allowed for research purposes. User is responsible for compliance with all copyright, privacy, and libel laws. Permission is required for publication or distribution.

Organizational History

David and William Babbitt arrived in Flagstaff, Arizona in 1886. Within a few months, brothers Charles, George, and Edward joined them. They began a small cattle business, and also bought a building in which they began operating a general store, run by David. By 1889, trade had expanded tremendously; and the store was moved to a larger building. The expanded store operated as Babbitt Brothers Trading Company. People representing a broad spectrum of northern Arizona society, including reservation traders and Indians, traveled distances of more than 100 miles to do business with the Babbitt Brothers.

The Babbitt Brothers bought, built, or acquired a small empire of trading posts on the Navajo reservation. Primarily concerned with their cattle business and with expanding retail operations, they often delegated management to others. Prior to incorporating most of their trading posts in 1923, many were operated as partnerships, the manager usually having a partnership interest in the post. Presumably, this was the case with the Babbit and Roberts Trading Post, also known as the Antelope Springs Trading Post, at Jeddito, AZ.

Wilmer C. Roberts, born in Maryland in 1889, moved to the Southwest as a boy. He grew up in the Jeddito area. Circa 1919, he bought the Antelope Springs Trading Post, and with his cousin, C. R. Roberts, ran the post for some 35 years.


4 boxes ( 4 cu. ft.)

Related Archival Material

Don Perceval Trading Post Research Center for Southwest Research, University Libraries, University of New Mexico

Relevant Secondary Sources

  • McNitt, Frank. The Indian Traders.
Finding aid of the Babbitt and Roberts Trading Post Records, 1919-1977 (bulk 1919-1951)
For Approval
Processed by B. Silbergleit
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is in English

Revision Statements

  • June 28, 2004: PUBLIC "-//University of New Mexico::Center for Southwest Research//TEXT (US::NmU::MSS 435 BC::Babbitt and Roberts Trading Post Records)//EN" "nmu1mss435bc.sgml" converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02.xsl (sy2003-10-15).
  • Monday, 20210524: Attribute normal is missing or blank.

Repository Details

Part of the UNM Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections Repository

University of New Mexico Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections
University Libraries, MSC05 3020
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque NM 87131