LB - Auto Racing Upickem

Home | Real Estate Search | Classifieds | Place an Ad | Public Notices | Galleries | Obituaries | Subscriber Services | Kingman Digital | Contact Us
Kingman Daily Miner | Kingman, Arizona

home : latest news : local May 24, 2016


6/3/2014 6:00:00 AM
Disabled vet builds, donates covered wagon to museum
DOUG McMURDO/Miner
DOUG McMURDO/Miner
DOUG McMURDO/Miner
David Savage stands with a covered wagon he built to half-scale and donated to the Mohave Museum of History & Arts.
DOUG McMURDO/Miner
David Savage stands with a covered wagon he built to half-scale and donated to the Mohave Museum of History & Arts.

Doug McMurdo
Miner Staff Reporter


KINGMAN - Not many images evoke the Old West era more vividly than does the covered wagon. The Mohave Museum of History & Arts now has one on display, thanks to the woodworking skills of disabled Vietnam veteran David Savage.

Savage built a half-scale model of a covered wagon, complete with water and grease buckets, sacks of flour and beans, a chest full of blankets and tools mounted to the sides, including a shovel, ax and bucksaw. There is a replica flintlock rifle and powder horn behind the bench.

The wagon is 8 feet long and 40 inches wide and almost everything is made of wood, even the tools and the brake.

Savage donated the wagon to the museum; a gesture Director Shannon Rossiter said was deeply appreciated.

"We've already got a lot of positive comments from visitors," he said. One woman, from Tennessee, went so far as to suggest Savage's wagon was her favorite display on a comment card.

Savage doesn't get around like he used to, not like he did a long time ago in Southeast Asia.

The retired Navy Seabee was among the first Americans to land on the beach at Da Nang and he and others from his construction battalion literally built a city in the jungle in 1966 and '67.

While in Vietnam, Savage was exposed to the chemical defoliant known as Agent Orange. His symptoms were dramatic and almost immediate.

"I had my first heart attack way back in the early '70s," he chuckled. "The lung cancer came next."

Savage would survive his bout with cancer, but at a tremendous cost to his health.

Unable to work because he simply had no idea how long his body would hold up over the course of the day, he became his own boss as a master woodworker.

"If I'm my own boss I can work four hours if that's all I can do or I can work for two hours," he said. "Everything depends on how I feel."

Savage spent a couple of months building the wagon in his garage.

"I found a guy in Golden Valley that had pinewood," he said. "This was choice honey pine and I bought it to make this wagon."

Like a musician who plays by ear, Savage has never used blueprints or somebody else's written instructions to make any of his woodwork, some which is featured in other museums in the West.

"I just look at a photograph at just about every angle you can look at a picture and go from there," he said. "Sometimes, if I want to learn more about something, I'll read historic accounts."

And while the shovel, ax and bucksaw are made of wood, they look like the rough-hewn tools in use 130 years ago.

The only modern item Savage used on the wagon is its cover. He didn't have the money to buy a canvas tarp, but he had the next best thing: A cover for his van that he no longer used.

"It fit perfectly," he said. "Like it was made for it, and that made me happy."

A curator at a museum in Las Vegas saw Savage's wagon and he's been asked to build one to display there.

"I have just enough wood to build another one," he said with a wide smile. "That means I've got something to keep me busy."



Click for home delivery with comics, grocery deals, inserts, TV listings, coupons and more

ICT - Re/Max - cdavidcooley (rentals/sales) 233x388

    Most Viewed     Recently Commented
•   Editorial: A boy named I'll sue (1641 views)

•   Obituary: Claudia Pena (1450 views)

•   KRMC follows trend, outsources coding (1283 views)

•   Ray Smith resigns as LWHS boys hoops coach (1122 views)

•   Man suffers injuries in Golden Valley rollover (1121 views)



Reader Comments

Posted: Tuesday, June 3, 2014
Article comment by: Rick O'Shea

Now that is cool!

Posted: Tuesday, June 3, 2014
Article comment by: terry mcsherry

Great job David Savage. Imagine a100 David Savages volunteering to do small or large western theme projects for downtown Beale street. Some one in another article mentions Kingman is famous for Route 66 and that is cool. Why not both , old west theme for Beale st. and Route 66 theme for Andy Divine/66 area downtown? Some neat places are there now , but need more to attract tourists and locals.



Article Comment Submission Form
Comments are not posted immediately. Submissions must adhere to our Use of Service Terms of Use agreement. Rambling or nonsensical comments may not be posted. Comments are limited to Facebook character limits. In order for us to reasonably manage this feature we may limit excessive comment entries.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Required
Last Name:
Required
Telephone:
Required
Email:
Required
Comment:
Required
Passcode:
Required
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.
   


Advanced Search

HSE - We want to hear from you
Kingman Chamber News
House Ad- Dining Guide
Auto Racing Upickem
Find more about Weather in Kingman, AZ
Click for weather forecast






Find it Features Blogs Milestones Extras Submit Other Publications Local Listings
Real Estate Search | Classifieds | Place an Ad | Find Kingman Jobs | Kingman Chamber | e-News | Contact Us | RSS | Site Map
LB - Las Vegas Motor Speedway 0518 Appreciation

© Copyright 2016 Western News&Info, Inc.® The Kingman Daily Miner is the information source for Kingman and surrounding area communities in Northern Arizona. Original content may not be reprinted or distributed without the written permission of Western News&Info, Inc.® Kingman Daily Miner Online is a service of WNI. By using the Site, kdminer.com ®, you agree to abide and be bound by the Site's terms of use and Privacy Policy, which prohibit commercial use of any information on the Site. Click here to email your questions, comments or suggestions. Kingman Daily Miner Online is a proud publication of Western News&Info, Inc.® All Rights Reserved.


Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved