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Garfield Goodwin Building

Garfield A. Goodwin moved to Tempe in 1888 and began his long-time commitment to Arizona State University and the revitalization of Tempe.

As a student, Goodwin played on the Territorial Normal School's first football team. As an alumnus, he helped the Tempe Normal School become a four-year accredited institution and acted as secretary of the school board. Later he promoted the creation of Tempe's first football stadium and headed the Tempe Beach Committee to establish the city's first park. If that wasn't enough, citizens elected him mayor, an office he served in from 1924 to 1926. Goodwin also served on the City Council for six years and was the President of Tempe Commerce and the local Rotary Club.

Amid all of his service to the city, he found time to run a Mill Avenue curio store, which he opened in 1903. Goodwin made frequent trips to New Mexico to purchase Native American arts and crafts that he sold in the store. Goodwin is one of many who capitalized on "Arizona culture," which borrowed from many Mexican and Native American cultures. He ran the business until his death in 1944. Many of the Native American artifacts Goodwin collected can be found in the Heard Museum. The property and much of the merchandise were sold to an acquaintance, Larry Miller, who ran the store until 1965.

The building is now home to multiple businesses but retains much of the original interior and exterior. Today, the original awning that once held the curio store's sign is still intact.

"The Garfield Goodwin Building is significant for its association with Garfield A. Goodwin, a prominent citizen of Tempe and operator of the Goodwin Curio Store for 41 years. The Garfield Goodwin Building is Tempe's only one-story cast iron frame commercial building and retains a significant portion of its exterior and interior integrity." (Tempe Preservation, Mill Ave Tour)


Goodwin Novelty Store, ca. 1930
Goodwin Novelty Store, ca. 1930 This shot of the Goodwin Building, taken around 1930, shows the eclectic wares found in the store. The decorative totem poles and scale seen here now reside in the Tempe History Museum. Photo courtesy of Tempe History Museum. Source: B/W of Exterior of Goodwin Novelty Store, c 1930. 2003.30.8. Tempe History Museum.
Garfield Goodwin, ca. 1925
Garfield Goodwin, ca. 1925 Garfield Goodwin was a prominent member of the Tempe community, helping to build up the Downtown area along with Arizona State University during the Depression and beyond. He served as Tempe's mayor from 1924 to 1926. Photo courtesy of Tempe History Museum. Source: Garfield Abram Goodwin, Tempe Mayor 1924-1926. Photograph, c 1925. 1987.35.9. Tempe History Museum.
Goodwin Stadium at Arizona State University
Goodwin Stadium at Arizona State University The Goodwin family has had such an impact on Tempe and its landscape that Arizona State University's first football stadium was named after him. Photo courtesy of the Tempe History Museum. Source: Completion of Goodwin Stadium at Arizona State University, and Prof. Lewis Neeb. Photograph, c 1936. 1999.14.360. Tempe History Museum



Holly Solis, “Garfield Goodwin Building,” Salt River Stories, accessed June 24, 2024,