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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Mojave in Kern County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Josephine Stephens Bishop

 
 
Josephine Stephens Bishop Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Craig Baker, November 20, 2021
1. Josephine Stephens Bishop Marker
Inscription.  "Josie" was born on June 18, 1875 in Silver City, New Mexico to Harvey and Harriet Whitehall. At 19 years old, she taught school in Pinos Altos, New Mexico. She married Herbert Hall Bishop on March 4, 1896, bearing him seven children. The Bishops moved around the country for several years, finally separating in 1920. While living in Long Beach, Josie began her short acting career and mined this area for gold and silver. After acquiring numerous claims, Josie finally hit pay dirt in 1937 by discovering the richest Radium deposit known at the time. The media gave her the name, "Radium Queen of the Desert" and Josie's fame spread worldwide. As a representative of Kern County and the mining industry, she toured the nation, appearing on various radio shows and in many publications. The only wealth she ever got from her big strike was fifty dollars. Josie Bishop died in an auto accident on July 12, 1951. She is buried at her claim, approximately five miles North of this spot.
 
Erected 1998 by Peter Lebeck Chapter No. 1866, Billy Holcomb Chapter No. 1069, Slim Princess Chapter No. 395, E Clampus Vitus. (Marker
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Number 93.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Arts, Letters, MusicCemeteries & Burial SitesEducationEntertainmentIndustry & CommerceRoads & VehiclesSettlements & SettlersWomen. In addition, it is included in the E Clampus Vitus series list. A significant historical date for this entry is June 18, 1875.
 
Location. 35° 18.049′ N, 118° 0.11′ W. Marker is in Mojave, California, in Kern County. Marker is at the intersection of Jawbone Canyon Road and Aerospace Highway (California Highway 14), on the right when traveling north on Jawbone Canyon Road. The marker is located about 19 miles north of Mojave. It is visible inside the fence at the BLM Jawbone facility, Jawbone Canyon Road is 1.1 miles south of the SR-14 & US 395 junction. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 28111 Jawbone Canyon Road, Cantil CA 93519, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 7 other markers are within 13 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Florence "Pancho" Barnes (approx. 0.4 miles away); Desert Spring (approx. 2.7 miles away); Red Rock Canyon State Park (approx. 4.6 miles away); William Henry "Burro" Schmidt (approx. 10.4 miles away); The Randsburg - Mojave Road
Josephine Stephens Bishop Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Michael Kindig, December 4, 2011
2. Josephine Stephens Bishop Marker
(approx. 11.9 miles away); California City Veterans Memorial (approx. 12 miles away); 20-Mule Team Trail (approx. 12.9 miles away).
 
More about this marker. After her discovery of radium the name "Radium Queen of the Desert" was a natural "handle" and stuck. Although Josephine made a big strike, she unfortunately was not able to cash in big on it. Josephine died as result of a vehicle accident on July 12, 1951.
SOURCE: Billy Holcomb Chapter 1069 35th Anniversary Plaque Book by Phillip Holdaway
 
Also see . . .  Josephine Stevens "Josie" Whitehill Bishop - Find-A-Grave. Josie's mining claim and grave site were recognized by the State of California, State Historical Resources Commission as Point of Historical Interest "Josie Bishop Mining Claim Site KER-010" on November 4, 1994. (Submitted on December 7, 2011, by Michael Kindig of Elk Grove, California.) 
 
Josephine Stephens Bishop Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Craig Baker, November 20, 2021
3. Josephine Stephens Bishop Marker
Jawbone Station image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Michael Kindig, January 15, 2012
4. Jawbone Station
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 21, 2021. It was originally submitted on December 7, 2011, by Michael Kindig of Elk Grove, California. This page has been viewed 1,528 times since then and 117 times this year. Last updated on November 3, 2014, by Michael Kindig of Elk Grove, California. Photos:   1. submitted on November 21, 2021, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California.   2. submitted on December 7, 2011, by Michael Kindig of Elk Grove, California.   3. submitted on November 21, 2021, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California.   4. submitted on January 16, 2012, by Michael Kindig of Elk Grove, California. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.

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Jun. 20, 2024