Tombstone, Arizona

Outside of Tucson is a little town with a big name, “Tombstone.” Many people have heard of Tombstone, but most also have assumptions about the town. The true history of the town isn’t often discussed on “haunted” programming, but it is fascinating nonetheless.

Tombstone started in 1877. Ed Schieffelin went against the advice of his acquaintances and set out in a desolate part of the Arizona land. They told him they would have to look for him and all they would find would be his tombstone.

Schieffelin ignored their protests and went alone into the desert. He happened upon a silver rock and staked his claim. He called his mine, “Tombstone.” Word of silver spread and soon people were arriving in droves to find their own fortunes. Several mines sprung up and they looked around to find a flat area big enough for a town. When they located a suitable building site, Goose Flats was born.

It is incredible that this town had such growth and such a large population. Tombstone is known for the Shootout at the OK Corral, for the Earp brothers, Doc Holiday, and Boot Hill Cemetery.

By the 1880s, the population estimates for the city had reached between 15,000 and 20,000. This was not a tiny town. There were newspapers, 100 saloons, numerous restaurants, schools, two theaters, and the town eventually had the first public swimming pool in Arizona, and it’s still in use today.

In 1881, a fire in the town destroyed 60 businesses. In 1882, yet another fire swept through the business district. The town rebuilt each time.

With the violence that occurred in the town, reports of paranormal activities abound today in the old town. The notorious “Bird Cage Saloon,” is still standing and paranormal groups are still investigating.

Reports of activity encompass the town, from the saloon to the cemetery. There’s also rumors that the historic items are, “cursed.” Many reports have came in through the years of zealous tourists taking tiny pieces of the town, such as nails or pieces of boards. These items are mailed or brought back to Tombstone within a week or two of visiting.

Tombstone is still a populated town, today, and visitors are treated to numerous plaques and historic information throughout the structures. Boot Hill is also visitor-friendly and you can see the graves of many legendary outlaws from the town’s glory days.

Further information on this infamous city:

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