University of Arizona

Students, faculty, staff, and the public are now welcome to visit Special Collections without an appointment from 9 am to 4 pm, Monday through Friday.

Harry Heffner Empire Ranch photograph collection

Primarily photographs but also a small amount of reminiscences, typescripts of letters, and notes concerning Harry Heffner’s involvement with the Empire Ranch  from 1893 to 1905. There are typescript copies of letters written to Edward L. Vail, 1875 to 1877, mostly by Walter Vail, and there are original ranch and water documents from Heffner’s California activities, 1905-1937.

Harry Heffner was employed by Walter Vail of Vail and Gates at the Empire Ranch, Pantano, Arizona from June 1893 to 1905. He started as a ranch hand, and later was manager of the ranch from 1902 to 1905. Heffner moved to California in 1905 where he owned various ranches, managed the Gates estate, and was director of various water districts. From 1939 to 1944, he was Vice President of the Cortaro Farms Company in Marana.