Interpretive Eduation Programs
Connect Your Class to the Past! Yuma Quartermaster Depot State Historic Park offers five interpretive education programs to supplement your classroom curriculum. Each program meets specific Arizona Standards for that program’s recommended grade levels.
There is a $1.00 per student entrance fee for programs. This is a flat fee, and does not change based on the numbers of programs requested.
For program descriptions and Arizona Standards planning, download the Interpretive Education Program Flier ( 220 KB PDF). For more information or to schedule a program call (928) 783-0071 and ask for Tammy. Programs include:
History of the Depot (grades K-12)
The Yuma Quartermaster Depot served as an army supply depot between 1864 and 1883. Touring the remaining original buildings of the depot, students learn the purpose of the site and its role in storing supplies for all the forts in Arizona Territory, and some forts outside the territory as well. Depot buildings on the tour include the old Storehouse, the Quartermaster’s Office, the Water Reservoir, the Quartermaster’s House (which is the oldest house in Yuma), and the Corral House. Gr. K and up
Natural History (grades K-8)
Many different species of animals populate the desert around Yuma and live along the banks of the Colorado River. The skull bones of these mammals and birds tell us a lot about the animal itself—including what type of food they eat, how big of an animal they are, their sense of smell, and whether or not they have good eyesight. Using the skulls of native animals of this area, students learn how skull features indicate the different lifestyles of animals. During the program, students have the opportunity to handle both skulls and hides. Gr. K-8
River Walk (grades 3-8)
The Sonoran desert displays a wide variety of vegetation. Both native and introduced plants of the Sonoran desert are explored through a nature hike around the park and along the banks of the Colorado River. During the hike, students discover how the native plants of the area have adapted to our desert climate, and the historical uses of plants by local tribes. Gr. 3-8
A Soldier’s Life (grades 3-6)
The heydey of the Yuma Quartermaster Depot was during the Indian Wars period of the 1870s. At that time, most army soldiers lived on frontier posts west of the Mississippi River. Using these posts as a campaign base, the army fought with native tribes of the west and forced them onto reservations. When not on campaign, these soldiers led a largely monotonous existence at their posts. By looking at the strict, daily routine of western soldiers in the 1870s, students will learn how the average army soldier spent much of their time during the Indian Wars period. Gr. 3-6
Arizona and the Civil War (grades 6-12)
Although most of the fighting during the Civil War occurred in the eastern United States, the war also had a strong influence on the history of the Southwest. During this program, students will tour the grounds of the historic Yuma Quartermaster Depot, built during the Civil War in 1864, and occupied by the army’s California Volunteers. While touring the grounds, students will learn not only the history of the depot, but also how the conflict resulted in several small skirmishes in Arizona, and the formation of Arizona as a separate territory from New Mexico. Gr. 6-12
Become a Junior Ranger
If you're between ages 6–12, you can become a Junior Ranger at Yuma Quartermaster Depot State Historic Park! Pledge to do your part to help preserve the beauty of the park for everyone to enjoy!
On this page, you can download a Junior Ranger activity for this park that you can complete on your own. It's just one of the fun activities you can do to become a Junior Ranger. After you complete it, bring it with you to the park and you're on your way to becoming a Junior Ranger.
When you visit the park ask for a full Junior Ranger booklet at the Visitor Center, Ranger Station or office. Complete the activities during your visit and then bring it to a Park Ranger for review. When a Park Ranger approves your work you'll be asked to take the Junior Ranger Pledge and get sworn in as our newest Junior Ranger. You'll also be given a Junior Ranger Button. We hope to see you at the park!
Activity Sheet Summary
Knowing the Code: Before our modern day internet or even phones, people communicated using the telegraph. The telegraph allowed people to communicate over long distances using beeping sounds that traveled through telegraph wires, just as sound travels through our telephone wires today. Joesph Henry invented the telegraph and Samuel Morse created the language of short and long beeps to represent letters and numbers.
The first military telegraph in Arizona was located here on the grounds of the old Yuma Quartermaster’s Depot. Use the Morse Code below to discover what was on the Quartermaster’s supply order list.
Download 1-Page Activity Sheet ( 531 KB PDF)
Pledge & Button
Junior Ranger Pledge: “As an Arizona State Parks Junior Ranger, I pledge to help the park rangers protect and preserve habitat, wildlife, and help keep the park clean and safe for visitors and wildlife.”
Remember, you can become a Junior Ranger at nearly all Arizona State Parks. So explore our website and visit the FOR KIDS page for each park for more activities.
Junior Ranger Button: Show everyone that you're a Junior Ranger! After you complete your activities and take the Junior Ranger Pledge you'll receive a Junior Ranger Button. You can pin it to your pack, put it on a bulletin board, or proudly wear it. Check out the button for this park in the picture.
- Alamo Lake
- Buckskin Mountain
- Cattail Cove
- Lake Havasu
- River Island
- Yuma Quartermaster Depot
- Yuma Territorial Prison
- Dead Horse Ranch
- Fort Verde
- Red Rock
- Riordan Mansion
- Slide Rock
- Verde River Greenway
- Boyce Thompson Arboretum
- Fool Hollow Lake
- Lost Dutchman
- Lyman Lake
- Tonto Natural Bridge