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Arizona National Guard marksmen at Camp Perry, 1910

Object Name: Print, photographic
Date: ca 1910
3 3/4 x 2 1/2 in. (9.5 x 6.4 cm)
Medium: Paper
Catalog number: 1999.28.1
DescriptionCresenio "Chris" Sigala is seated at the far left in the second row. A tent is in the background.

Marksmenship team of the 1st Infantry Regiment, Arizona National Guard at Camp Perry, Ohio in August 1910. 18 guardsmen and officers are pictured in the photo - they are situated in three rows, with back row standing, middle row seated on chairs, and the four men in the front sitting cross-legged on the ground. Except for the three officers in the center, all of the soldiers hold Springfield rifles, Model 1903 as issued to American servicemen at this time.
The officer seated at the far left, middle row is Lt. Chris Sigala. He wears three marksmanship medals, including a federal army issue badge for expert riflemen (rightmost badge), an Arizona National Guard medal with four attachments probably indicating year of qualification or level (such as marksman, sharpshooter, or expert), and an unknown medal on the left. Some of the other guardsmen wear their marksmanship medals as well. The officer in the middle of the second row is Major Carl Hayden (team leader). Major Hayden and Lt. Sigala are both members of the Arizona National Guard's regimental staff. Five other men in this photo are from Tempe's Company C of the 1st Infantry Regiment, Arizona National Guard.

The marksmen in the photo all qualified to attend this national match competition at Fort Huachuca in late July-early August at Fort Huachuca in southern Arizona. The twelve-man team finished 23rd overall out of 50 teams in the competition with a score of 2916 points, and a 2nd place finish in the C division and earned a $200 prize. Lt. Sigala and Capt. Woolf earned the top team scores of 262 points each. (Source on competition stats - Tombstone Epitaph, Sept. 4, 1910)
ProvenanceCresensio "Chris" Sigala was born in Sonora, Mexico. In 1874, and was brought to Tempe as a child. He grew up in a house on Creamery road (Now known as Old 8th Street). His stepfather, Miguel Oviedo, owned a grocery store across the street from Pacific Creamery.
Chris Sigala was actively involved in the business and civic affairs of Tempe around the turn of the century. He attended the Territorial Normal School (now Arizona State University) and played on the school's football team when it won its first victory over the University of Arizona in 1899. He worked as a typesetter for the Tempe Daily News for nearly twenty years. Then, in 1917, he opened a grocery store on Dewey Street, where the ASU Palo Verde dormitories are now located.
Through much of his life, Mr. Sigala also worked in law enforcement. He was elected constable of Tempe in 1904 and later served as both a deputy sheriff and an assistant fire chief. He also enlisted in the Arizona National Guard and served for more than twenty years. He eventually became a commander of Tempe's Company C, which was called upon to help maintain order during the Morenci copper mine strike in 1915.
Chris Sigala was also involved in early civil rights activities in Arizona. He was one of the founders of the Tempe lodge of the Liga Protectora Latina (Latin Protection League). This mutual aid society provided insurance benefits to its members, but also led rallies to protest the segregation of public schools and discrimination in employment. Sigala was president of the Tempe lodge from 1915-1917, and served a year as vice president of the organization's Supreme (national) Council. This collection documents the life of Chris Sigala and offers a glimpse into Tempe daily life in the early 1900s. The collection was donated by his son, Charles Sigala, in 1994.

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