You can visit Tombstone, Arizona – The Town too Tough to Die

Tombstone, Arizona CourthouseTombstone, Arizona is a historic Wild West town, also a well-known tourist attraction, which was dubbed the “town too tough to die.” Located south of Tucson, Tombstone is a favorite with families and visitors. The town hosts shoot-outs, stagecoach rides, wild west shows and much more.  Tombstone is not a theme park. It is a real town, rebuilt from the ghost town abandoned by the silver mining industry. And, some say, there are real ghosts still living there.

Tombstone History – Silver Strike
Tombstone, like many other historic Arizona towns was founded as a mining claim. In 1877 a prospector named Ed Schieffelin who was actually there as part of an expedition seeking out the local Apaches. He found silver on one of his forays into the desert and named his mine “The Tombstone.”

Soon other prospectors arrived looking for silver. In 1879 the area grew into a town which was named after Ed Schieffelin’s first mine in the area.

At Tombstone’s highest period of growth, Tombstone was said to be the fastest growing city between St. Louis and San Francisco. There were numerous saloons, a theater, and a thriving business district.

 Eventually the mines were tapped out and people started leaving Tombstone a virtual ghost town. More Tombstone History

Visiting Tombstone, Arizona
Tombstone has a great little visitor’s center with helpful volunteers. The Tombstone Visitor and Information Center is located on 4th and Allen Streets.Tombstone, Arizona Stage Coach

Be sure and get the free map of Tombstone. The center also has tourist information on other Arizona attractions.

I always enjoy following walking maps. By using the walking map, you’ll be sure to see all of Tombstone and focus on attractions that are of the most interest to you. Visitor’s Center Website

What to see inTombstone

– Tombstone Courthouse State Historic Park
Tombstone still houses some fantastic vestiges of the Old West. The Tombstone Courthouse is a bit of real Tombstone history. The park is located on the corner of Toughnut and 3rd Streets, 2 blocks off Highway 80. Places like the Courthouse are real, not just tourist attractions.

– Tombstone Tour
You can take a historical tour of Tombstone by wagon or stagecoach. Website. There are also jeep tours of Tombstone and the surrounding area.

– Good Enough Mine Tour
Mining is what made Tombstone, so why not check out this real mine. You’ll actually go down into the mine on this tour. Address:Toughnut St., Tombstone, AZ

The mine is located on the corner of Toughnut and Fifth Sts. The attraction is open daily with tours on the hour from 10-4. Phone:520-255-0552

– Bird Cage Theater
Billed as the most authentic attraction in Tombstone, The Birdcage Theater is open to the public year-round from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm daily. There’s lots going on at The Birdcage. Some of the activity is paranormal. You’ll find out if you go on one of the nightly ghost tours. More on the Birdcage Theater.

– Gunfight at OK Corral
Everyone has heard about the Gunfight at OK Corral. And for a price, you can see a reenactment of this infamous event.

First see the film on Tombstone’s history and then tour this famous gun fight site. Walk where Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday, Virgil and Morgan Earp fought the Clantons and McLaurys on October 26, 1881. You can experience the reenactment inside the O.K. Corral® at 2 p.m. each day. Entrance Fee. Website

– Boot Hill Grave Yard
Another well-known site is the Boot Hill Graveyard. The Graveyard is just a short distance from Tombstone off Highway 80. I walked there from town but others may want to drive. Boot Hill was founded in 1878 on a rise just north west of the city. This historic cemetery was the burial ground, for all of Tombstone’s earliest settlers. Entrance Fee or Donation for Map. Website

Getting toTombstone
Tombstone is located 70 miles southeast of Tucson. To get to Tombstone, take I-10 from Tucson to Benson, Arizona. At Benson, head south on 80.Map

More Information
City of Tombstone Website
Tombstone Visitors Information

Photo Credit: Elizabeth R. Rose

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