Arizona Holiday: Day 2: Tombstone Diary: On the street

27 Apr

Tombstone Diary: Saturday, April 11, 2015

Downtown Tombstone is mainly 2 streets and 500 saloons.
Just kidding – there’s 3 streets.
In it’s heyday Tombstone had “110 saloons, 14 gambling halls, and numerous dancing halls and brothels”.

Today’s Map of Tombstone: Hope you can read the print.

Downtown Tombstone Map

Tombstone badge 2

Rose and I exit the The Bird Cage into bright sunlight. It’s a beautiful day.

Downtown Tombstone cowboys

Downtown Tombstone sign board

Lots of things to see in Tombstone

We head for a shop across the street …
But we get far before we’re bushwhacked by this guy:

Dirty Dingus

Dirty Dingus is big and mean lookin’ and smooth talks us into going into
The Gunfight Palace
A place where they do “Famous Gunfight Re-enactments”.

I don’t really want to go in, but Rose is already buying the tickets.

So … in we go.

After the Intro we get down to business …

Downtown Tombstone 1

Downtown Tombstone card game

Downtown Tombstone card game 2

*Bang Bang* !!

Downtown Tombstone card game 3

Uh huh …

We toss a couple of nuggets into the spittoon
and head back to the street.

Tombstone badge 2

Hey ! There goes the stage …

Nice looking rig.

Stage 1

Downtown Tombstone Haunted Hotel

Downtown Tombstone Haunted Hotel 2

Time for some shopping.

Replica Guns for sale
More replica guns

Downtown Tombstone

Downtown Tombstone knives
Can’t afford a gun? Try a knife.

Downtown Tombstone Crystal Palace

Stage 2

Tombstone Visitors Centre
Tombstone Visitors Center

Next:
Downtown Tombstone:
Big Nose Kate’s

Arizona Holiday … Day 2 … Tombstone Diary: Inside the Bird Cage

23 Apr

Tombstone Diary: Saturday, April 11, 2015

Inside The Bird Cage you’ll see this guy.

guy in the bird cage

“Howdy Greenhorn”

He gives a 10 minute talk on the history of The Bird Cage.
It’s a good talk. (Though I’m not so sure about the sunglasses)

guy in the bird cage 2

And a damn nice bar it is !

gal in the Bird Cage

Rose ‘bellys up’

Lots of stuff to look at.

Bird Cage entrance

 For 8 bucks, we’re invited to go in back and see the rest of The Bird Cage.
We ante up and mosey in.

Tombstone badge 2

The Bird Cage Theatre

Rose is standing where the seats used to be.
I’m shooting from by the stage.
The Bird Cages line the room on both sides.

inside the bird cage main room

inside the bird cage main room 2

A table of artifacts.

inside the bird artifacts

Below: I found the guns.

inside the bird cage guns

Below: Faro table used by Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp.

inside the bird cage faro table

Tombstone badge 2

Lots of ghost stories and ghost experiences around Tombstone – as you would imagine. I bumped into a couple of gents in The Bird Cage who trying to photograph ghosts or ‘orbs’.
I didn’t encounter or photograph anything myself and it really wasn’t on my mind. Rose, however, did have an interesting experience at the piano. She took a number of shots, but none of them would come out.

inside the bird cage Rose's paino 2

Fuzzy, grainy and with spots all over them.
Below also.

inside the bird cage Rose's paino

True, we are both fully capable of taking lousy photographs, but
I have never seen this effect on either of our cameras before.
???

Below: I had no such problem.

iside the bird cage my paino

Except for the thing in the circle.
An Orb? or just a spot?

inside the bird cage my paino 23

inside the bird cage my paino 2

Moving along …

inside the bird cage Stage

The Bird Cage stage and piano (image from the internet)

Behind the curtain …

inside the bird cage Doc Holliday

inside the bird cage boot hill

inside the bird cage famous folks

inside the bird cage hearse

Downstairs …

inside the bird cage poker game

I’m in …

inside the bird cage poker game 2

On the way out …

inside the bird cage somebody's room

inside the bird cage on the way out

inside The Bird Cage notice

inside the bird cage merchandise

Replica guns

A good and interesting time in The Bird Cage.

Next:
Downtown Tombstone

Arizona Holiday … Day 2 … Tombstone Diary: The Bird Cage Theatre

21 Apr

The Bird Cage Theatre / Tombstone

Old Bird Cage

The Bird Cage Theatre was opened on December 26, 1881, by William “Billy” Hutchinson and his wife Lottie. Its name apparently referred to the fourteen “cages” or boxes that were situated on two balconies on either side of the main central hall. These boxes, also referred to as “cribs”, had drapes that could be drawn while prostitutes entertained their clients. The main hall contained a stage and orchestra pit at one end where live shows were performed.

The Bird Cage Theatre operated continuously – twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year – for the next eight years. It gained a reputation as one of the wildest places in the country, prompting The New York Times to report in 1882 that “the Bird Cage Theatre is the wildest, wickedest night spot between Basin Street and the Barbary Coast”. More than 120 bullet holes are evident throughout the building.

Aside from Lillian Russell, many other famous entertainers of the day were alleged to have performed there over the years, including Eddie Foy, Sr., Lotta Crabtree and Lillie Langtry. In 1882, Fatima allegedly performed her belly-dancing routine at the Bird Cage Theatre.

inside the bird cage 2

inside the bird cage 3

inside the bird cage 4

The basement poker room is said to be the site of the longest-running poker game in history. Played continuously twenty-four hours a day for eight years, five months, and three days, legend has it that as much as $10,000,000 changed hands during the marathon game, with the house retaining 10 percent. Some of the participants were Doc Holliday, Bat Masterson, Diamond Jim Brady, and George Hearst.

inside the bird cage 5

inside the bird cage 6

When ground water began seeping into the mines in the late 1880s the town went bust, the Bird Cage Theatre along with it. The poker game ended and the building was sealed up in 1889.

Arizona Holiday … Day 2 … Tombstone Part 1

21 Apr

Tombstone Diary: Saturday, April 11, 2015:


Gunfight at OK Corral (1957) / Frankie Laine

I came to Tombstone with the attitude that “whatever’s there, I’m going to enjoy it”. I surely expected a degree of tackiness –  but I also looked forward to a degree of the Historic Tombstone …

We’ll see …

Tombstone badge 2

Saturday, April 11, 2015: A beautiful day. Going to be about 80 F. With clear blue skies. Shouldn’t burn my delicate Alberta skin.

But first, of course, we get lost. Took a wrong turn in the desert.
No sweat. I’m enjoying the scenery.

Then ! a sign …

Tombstone Sign

Yep … this must be the way …

We ride into Tombstone at about 10 a.m.

Tombstone Sign 2

“Tombstone City Limit” – Sure, it could use some paint, but at least there’s no bullet holes.

Wow! … lots of people in town. Something is going on. ? I see some costumed kids dancing in the street …

Tombstone street fair

Seems we’ve arrived on the Tombstone Rose Festival !

Tombstone Rose Festival:

“Celebrating the 130th Blooming of the “World’s Largest Rose Tree”.
Events included the Rose Tree Parade, Rose Queen Coronation, Pet Parade,
Folklorico Dancers and the Nogales Arizona Mariachi Apache Band
and much more.”

Amazing !

There’s also a Corvette Stingray rally as part of the festival.

Tombstone Stingray

I coulda taken a dozen pics of these beautiful Rays’.

But that’s not why we came.

Tombstone badge 2

We find a parking spot … jump out …

First thing we see is a bunch of wagon wheels behind a building.

We think this is interesting. ? *click click*

Tombstone wheels

Tombstone wheels 2

Tombstone badge 2

Walking around the corner and Rose gets right into it …
Snaps a nice shot of some folks in Western attire.

Outside the Birdcage

Sign on door says: “Through these doors have passed some the most famous characters of Western history” 

Sign on the wall says:

Sign on the Birdcage

 We find we’re standing right in front of the famous Bird Cage Theatre !
–  blog buddy Rick (Surrounded by Imbeciles: https://surroundedbyimbeciles.wordpress.com/)
had recommended this to us! 

Birdcage fake

Sign outside of the Bird Cage:

sign outside Birdcage

Curly and Fred get immortalized.

 Next up:

Inside the Bird Cage 

Tombstone …. a brief history

20 Apr


Lindsey Stirling – Transcendence

Tomestone: a brief history

Tombstone Heritage

Wikipedia: Tombstone is a historic western city in Cochise County, Arizona, United States, founded in 1879 by Ed Schieffelin in what was then Pima County, Arizona Territory. It was one of the last wide-open frontier boomtowns in the American Old West. The town prospered from about 1877 to 1890, during which time the town’s mines produced US$40 to $85 million in silver bullion, the largest productive silver district in Arizona. Its population grew from 100 to around 14,000 in less than seven years. It is best known as the site of the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral and draws most of its revenue from tourism.

The town was established on a mesa above the Tough Nut Mine. Within two years of its founding, although far distant from any other metropolitan city, Tombstone boasted a bowling alley, four churches, an ice house, a school, two banks, three newspapers, and an ice cream parlor, alongside 110 saloons, 14 gambling halls, and numerous dancing halls and brothels. All of these were situated among and on top of a large number of dirty, hardscrabble mines. The gentlemen and ladies of Tombstone attended operas presented by visiting acting troupes at the Schieffelin Hall opera house, while the miners and cowboys saw shows at the Bird Cage Theatre, “the wildest, wickedest night spot between Basin Street and the Barbary Coast”.

Under the surface were tensions that grew into deadly conflict. The mining capitalists and townspeople were largely Republicans from the Northern states. Many of the ranchers in the area were Confederate sympathizers and Democrats. The booming city was only 30 miles (48 km) from the U.S.–Mexico border and was an open market for beef stolen from ranches in Sonora, Mexico, by a loosely organized band of outlaws known as The Cowboys. The Earp brothers—Virgil, Wyatt, Morgan and Warren—arrived in December 1879 and summer 1880. They had ongoing conflicts with Ike and Billy Clanton, Frank and Tom McLaury, and other Cowboys members. The Cowboys repeatedly threatened the Earps over many months until the conflict escalated into a confrontation that turned into a shootout, the now-famous Hollywood-ized Gunfight at the O.K. Corral. The actual gun fight was on Fremont Street a block or 2 away from the O.K. Corral.

Tombstone MarkerCITY OF TOMBSTONE

Tombstone badge 2

Colt 45 2

Tombstone badge 2

Picacho Peak … Arizona

19 Apr

That “unknown Peak” from a couple of posts back was Picacho Peak, Arizona.

Picacho Peak

Heading South to Sierra Vista

Picacho Peak, Arizona

From the other side – This image borrowed from the internet

Rather grand looking.

Picacho Peak State Park

http://azstateparks.com/Parks/PIPE/index.html

“Visitors traveling along I-10 in southern Arizona can’t miss the prominent 1,500-foot peak of Picacho Peak State Park. Enjoy the view as you hike the trails that wind up the peak and, often in the spring, overlook a sea of wildflowers. The park and surrounding area are known for its unique geological significance, outstanding and varied desert growth, and historical importance. The unique shape has been used as a landmark by travelers since prehistoric times. One of the first recordings was in the 1700s by the Anza Expedition as it passed through the area.

The park facilities include a visitor center with exhibits and a gift store, hiking trails, playground, historical markers, campground, picnic areas, ramadas, grills, dump station, restrooms, and showers. The group use areas, for day & overnight use, are available by reservation. Before you hike, be prepared with enough water and proper footwear as the trails are steep and challenging.”

There ya go.

Arizona Holiday … backtracking

18 Apr

“Goin’ places that I’ve never been
Seein’ things that I may never see again …”

ARIZONA TERRITORY

ARIZONA Territory

Rolling in from Phoenix and Tucson … to Sierra Vista

then Tombstone

On the way to Sierra Vista

Signs of Buffalo

Imagine our shock to see these signs: “Buffalo Soldier Trail“. We had no idea. Pure coincidence that I had been blogging about the Buffalo Soldiers and here we have a Buffalo Soldiers Museum at Fort Huachuca – right across the street from our hotel !

Signs of Buffalo

Then Imagine our disappointment when we discover that we can’t get in !!! Because we have no “Escort”:

“International visitors are required to arrange for a Department of Army identification card holder escort prior to their visit. Please contact … to arrange for an escort at least three weeks in advance.”

Of course, we didn’t know any of this, but I also discovered that the Fort Huachuca museums are presently undergoing extensive renovations. So it’s doubtful we would have been able to see anything even if we were able to get in. Too bad. It would have been a very nice bonus for our trip.

Buffalo Soldiers at Huachuca

Our Sierra Vista home

Oh well …

Tomorrow we head for Tombstone.

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