Award Winning Speaker

Doug has twice been awarded the Danielson Award for best program by Westerners International. He has been selected as a Road Scholar by AZ Humanities.

About the talks

All talks are planned for 1 hour, 40 minutes of talk and 20 minutes of Q&A. They are supported by PowerPoint slide shows. Doug has his own computer, remote control, screen and projector. Let him know if he needs them or just the thumb drive.

Fee Arrangements

$250 honorarium and travel expenses are negotiable. 

Books to Sell

Doug has copies of his books to sign and sell. Let him know if this is a problem.

AZ Humanities

AZ Humanities provides Road Scholars through the AZ Speaks program to non-profit organizations. The organization pays $100, opens the program to the public, and advertises. AZ Humanities reimburses the speaker for expenses and honorarium. 

Tom Jeffords: Friend of Cochise

A Remarkable Friendship that Made Peace Possible

In 1872, Cochise had been at war with the United States for 11 years. From his Stronghold in the Dragoon Mountains he could see soldiers approaching while they were still two-days' ride away. He didn't trust Americans and wanted a reservation in his own country. Tom Jeffords had captained a ship on the Great Lakes, scouted for the army, and prospected. Asked to ride alone into Cochise's camp, he did, and won the Apache leaders respect and friendship. That bond made peace negotiations possible. Jimmy Stewart played Tom in the movie Broken Arrow


Black Legend

George Bascom, Cochise, and the Start of the Apache Wars

For many years, historians blamed Lieutenant George Bascom for mistreating Cochise of the Chiricahua Apache and starting 11 years of bloody warfare. Because Arizona was almost completely evacuated in 1861, a self-aggrandizing sergeant was able to pass along the story of a drunken shave-tail  picking on Cochise without reason and thus starting a war with an Apache who was always friendly to Americans and who protected the Overland Mail.

The real story, drawn from the accounts of people who were actually present is much more interesting as are the real reasons the war began and didn't end. Cochise was the greatest leader the Chiricahua ever produced.


Colonel William Emory

The Heroic Opening of the American Southwest

This is a personification of Colonel William Emory.  Lieutenant William H. Emory, topographical engineer, rode with General Kearny in the 1846/47 conquest of New Mexico, Arizona, and California. Bold Emory, as he was known at West Point, fought beside the general at the Battle of San Pascual. Throughout his trek from Missouri to California, he recorded the terrain, its people, ruins, flora and fauna, minerals, agricultural resources and trails. His map opened the Southern Emigrant Road to travel and his published work introduced the Southwest to the American people and established the need for the Gadsden Purchase. He told the national what was in the Southwest, why they should come and how to get there. After the war, he returned to survey our southern boundary. He was among the first to command a cavalry regiment. This is a personification told as if Colonel Emory were the speaker. 


Death on the Santa Fe Trail

Kit Carson and the Pursuit of the Jicarilla Apache

 In 1849 the Jicarilla Apache had been at war with the United States for two years. That year massacred the men of a wagon train and kidnapped a woman and her child. Kidnapping Mexican and Pueblo women was a commonplace, but Mrs. White was an Anglo and a lady, almost the only one in New Mexico. Pursuit came from all directions but it took Kit Carson to find and follow a trail already a month old. This is the historic background to the historical novel, Massacre at Point of Rocks, the real story. 

Author Doug Hocking  grew up among the Jicarilla and can tell their story in a way that few can match.


Terror on the Santa Fe Trail

Kit Carson and the Jicarilla Apache

The range of the Jicarilla Apache covered a third of the Santa Fe Trail on both the Cimarron Cut-Off and the Mountain Branch. At any time, they could cut New Mexico off from the Union striking cold fear in the hearts of leaders in Santa Fe. Three times when angered they closed the trail, but in 1854 they had been at peace for four years. 

Governor Meriwether predicted a war caused by the policies of his predecessor. But it didn't come. Then Lieutenant Davidson attacked a peaceful camp of Apaches. They defended themselves with 100 warriors to his 60 dragoons. Twenty-two dragoons died and the rest were wounded while the Jicarilla suffered only 3 casualties. The governor had his war which was officially declared. Davidson became a hero and after almost two years of pursuing and killing Apaches, the governor made almost the same peace treaty as his predecessor. 

Through it all Kit Carson was enemy, neighbor, friend, scout, and their Indian agent.


The Graves at Dragoon Springs

Who is Buried Under the Four Rock Cairns?

In 1858, seven men worked at the Dragoon Springs Station of the Overland Mail, colloquially known as the Butterfield Mail. In the night as the men slept, three Mexican employees attacked the other four. They lay wounded and dying for many days in the Arizona sun until relief came. Only Silas St. John, horribly mutilated, survived. The other three lie buried in two cairns along with Silas's arm.

In 1862, near Dragoon Springs Cochise attacked a crew of Confederate soldier/herdsmen accompanied by Union prisoners. Union and Confederate fought side by side against Apache, Some of them fell. 


Padre Antonio Jose Martinez

New Mexico Hero and Excommunicated Priest


For more than 300 years New Mexico was a Franciscan mission field and her people, other than Indians, an afterthought. With the Mexican Revolution in 1821 that changed and the Franciscans were expelled leaving the land with only one priest. Padre Martinez performed wonders, trained priests and led the Penitentes only to have much of his work undone by a French bishop who didn’t understand the culture. He owned and operated the first printing press in New Mexico, started the first school and seminary, served the Mexican and then the American legislature. He's rumored to have fathered five children and to have been the head of the Pentitente secret society. He was excommunicated for baptizing his flock without forcing them to tithe first.