Tombstone, Arizona And Surrounding Area
Posted 20 December 2011 - 09:25 AM
Tombstone is most notably known for the 1881 Gunfight at the OK Corral involving the infamous Wyatt Earp, which lasted 30 seconds. Recently, they've actually found the court transcripts and uploaded them to the Arizona Memory Project online archive/database-- you can view them here. I actually don't have photos of inside the corral, but I do have photos of the entrance on Allen Street (which is the current main entrance) and also photos of the "back alley" (which used to be the main entrance at the time of the gunfight).
My favorite place to visit in Tombstone is BootHill-- probably because it's free. Unfortunately, all the headstones face east and I've only managed to get out there in the late afternoon so all my photos are back-lit. (Some people think the lens flare from the glare are "ghosts"-- I can assure you, it's just a bad photo!) It's a $2 donation for a little pamphlet describing who is buried in which graves, their significance to the town as well as their cause of death. As far as I know, aside from the curious photograph taken of Ike Clanton (descendant of the 1880's Ike Clanton), there aren't any other strange circumstances out at Boot Hill. Surprisingly, it's possibly one of the LEAST HAUNTED places in the whole town... at least, as far as I've heard. (I didn't say I didn't think it wasn't haunted. *wink*)
The most haunted place in town is, hands down, the Birdcage Theater. It's $20/adult to walk through the Birdcage, but the place is more-or-less exactly as it was left. There are antiques all around, bullet holes and all manner of oddities.
Tombstone is also notorious for a strange and seemingly non-existent photo of a Thunderbird that everyone seems to remember having seen-- even though it, apparently, never exited.
... but before I jump right into the more notorious ghost stories, here are some photos of BootHill.
Above: The graves of Billy Clanton, Tom and Frank Mclaury, which are in the SE corner of the area of the graveyard that has been recovered from the underbrush. This shot looks towards the NW and across Boot Hill from near the SE corner of the cemetery.
Above: Just a random view of some of the graves on BootHill
Above: George Johnson's grave. The marker, one of the more tragic, yet comedic headstones in Boothill, reads: Here lies George Johnson hanged by mistake 1882. He was right. We was wrong, but we strung him up and now he's gone.
Above: Marshall Fred White's grave, which reads "Marchall Fred White, Shot by Curly Bill".
Above: The notorious Lester Moore-- Can't post photos without one of Lester Moore's grave. Here Lies Lester Moore. Four Slugs from a 44. No Les. No More.
Two Chinamen Died of Leprosy. (Chinese are buried in the NW side of the graveyard)
Six Shooter Jim Shot by Burt Alvord '85
The Brady Brothers. Two small boys who drowned.
John Blair Died of Smallpox. Cowboy threw rope over feet and dragged him to his grave.
William Grounds. Died of Wounds. (He was shot in the face)
Margarita stabbed by Gold Dollar (in the BirdCage Theater) As the story goes, Gold Dollar caught Margarita sitting on the lap of a poker player named Billy Milgreen who was also the boyfriend of Gold Dollar. In a jealous rage, Gold Dollar stabbed Margarita in the chest, killing her.
Posted 22 December 2011 - 02:33 PM
Though the original building has likely been reduced to ashes in one of the many Tombstone fires, the location where Morgan Earp spent a lot of his waking hours in life is still frequented by him in death.
The Earps were a well dressed bunch. They were raised with manners, which is something a lot of western settlers were lacking. Those manners seem to have carried over in this life as well. Employees of the store are alleged to have told that Morgan Earp watches over the store in their absence. At night, when everyone has gone home for the evening, Morgan will face shelves (incorrectly) and tidy up the place. One employee is said to have been unable to finish stocking shelves before the store closed. Planning on finishing the task in the morning, they left the box of wares still half-full. The last person there was the first to open the shoppe in the morning, and when they went to finish shelving the contents of the box they found it empty. Items from the box had been removed sometime during the night, but they were not shelved correctly and the employee spent a lot of time trying to find where the helpful spirit had set the wares.
Was it a prank or was it really the kind-hearted Morgan Earp trying to help staff from beyond the grave?
Campbell and Hatch's is now a tourist shoppe that sells primarily western antiques to the curious Tombstone tourists who want to visit the "Town Too Tough To Die". The significance of the building is announced by a 2005 plaque outside the building which reads:
Morgan Earp was murdered while playing pool at Campbell and Hatch's Saloon on March 18th, 1882
Above: Campbell and Hatch's (Original location... possibly not the original store-- fire did burn down a good portion of Tombstone). Photo taken 2010-02-15.
Above: Note the inscription in the window indicating the historical site.
Posted 31 December 2011 - 06:15 AM
I enjoy a lot of the Wild West.... I think mostly because there was such a sense of newness to everything. They were explorers first and foremost, not just part of an expansion of what would become an over-sized country. The West was the final frontier and these men and women pushed beyond the accepted boundaries to find out what was there.
Perhaps someday I can return and visit Tombstone and other similar places in and outside of Arizona.
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