WILLCOX Cowboy Hall of Fame inductees


B. A. Gardner was born on August 26, 1897 in San Angelo, Texas. He came to Arizona in the early 1900's as a very young child, along with several of his siblings, his Mother and Father. They traveled in a covered Wagon and passed through Apache Pass to settle in Douglas, Arizona on a homestead by the old marble quarry affectionately known as "Poverty Flats". His family later moved to Willcox, where B. A. and his siblings were raised and educated. He later moved to Rico, Colorado after marrying Henrietta (Hattie) Koster in 1921. They owned and operated a butcher shop in the boom town of Rico and lived there for several years.

They returned to Willcox in the 1930's and homesteaded a place a few miles out of Willcox where they both lived till they passed away. B. A. was an avid horseman; he loved his racehorses and his gamecocks. He always had several of each in the back yard and would proudly tell you stories about each of them. He played the fiddle quite well along with his wife Hattie playing the piano; they would entertain their friends and family till the wee hours without stopping and loved every minute of it. Hattie passed away in 1978 and B. A. lived alone in their home till he passed in 1989. They raised two fine boys; Lee Gardner of Tempe, Arizona; and Ray Gardner of Prescott. They both inherited their parent's love of music and love of entertaining friends and family. B. A. was loved by many who knew him and was always ready with a good story about his horses or his roosters, but most of all he loved his friends and family to come visit him and Hattie.

The coffee pot was always on, and the fiddle just in reach.