Tombstone Terrors: Ghosts and Gunslingers of the Wild West
From $25 / person
Tombstone Terrors: Ghosts and Gunslingers of the Wild West
From $25 / person
Things to Do in Tombstone: By JUNKET
Did you know the "Tombstone Epitaph" is the oldest continuously published newspaper in Arizona? Or that the town’s Boothill Graveyard is named for the number of men buried with their boots on? Or that the famous gunfight at the O.K. Corral only lasted 30 seconds?
In the heart of the rugged Arizona desert, where the whispers of the Wild West still linger, lies a town frozen in time. Welcome to Tombstone, a legendary mining boomtown steeped in tales of lawmen and outlaws, greed and gunfights, and the echoes of a bygone era.
As you step foot onto its historic streets, prepare to be transported back to a time when the West was yet to be won and legends were forged in the crucible of the dusty frontier. Here, the spirit of Wyatt Earp and his lawmen live on, and the vestiges of cowboys, saloon girls, and silver prospectors seem to swirl in the wind, weaving a tapestry of untold stories and larger-than-life characters.
Tombstone beckons you to embark on a journey into its storied past, where the clash of gunfire, the creaking of saddle leather, and the call of justice still resonate, echoing through the canyons and forever etching this small town into the annals of American history.
The Wild West Lives On
Transport yourself back in time as you stroll down iconic Allen Street, lined with authentic Victorian-era buildings that whisper tales of the past. Immerse yourself in the haunting atmosphere of the O.K. Corral, where a famous gunfight would become legendary, and witness thrilling reenactments that bring the Old West to life.
Explore the Boothill Graveyard, a hauntingly captivating site where legendary figures from the city's turbulent past rest eternally. Saddle up for a scenic horseback ride through the breathtaking landscapes surrounding Tombstone, allowing you to soak in the beauty of the rugged Arizona wilderness.
Terror in Tombstone
For a touch of Old West entertainment, head to one of the authentic saloons that come alive after the desert sun dips below the horizon. Immerse yourself in the historic atmosphere as you sip on handcrafted cocktails and listen to live music featuring talented local musicians who bring a touch of the Wild West to the stage.
But as darkness descends upon Tombstone, the city reveals a spectral tapestry where the ethereal presence of lingering apparitions intertwines with the echoes of a bygone era. Haunting tales and whispers of restless spirits that linger on its historic streets will prey upon your captive imagination as you commence an enthralling journey on the legendary Tombstone Ghost Tour. Prepare to be invited to:
- Uncover the ghostly prankster at Red Buffalo Trading Co.
- Encounter the residual gunfire at the O.K. Corral
- Discover the phantom cowboy at Ike Clanton’s Haunted Hotel
- Unearth the angry spirit at Doc Holliday’s Saloon
- And so much more…
There’s a Junket for everyone – Pick yours.
Birth of a Boomtown
Etched into the annals of American history, Tombstone holds a place of enduring fascination as a symbol of the Wild West. Its name alone evokes images of lawmen, outlaws, and gunfights. But beneath the surface of its legendary status lies a captivating story that shaped the town into the iconic destination it is today.
In 1877, a daring silver prospector named Ed Schieffelin embarked on a journey from Camp Huachuca, an Army post nestled in the untamed landscapes of southeastern Arizona. Aware that the area was often scouted by the native Apache tribe, his fellow soldiers tried to dissuade Schieffelin from venturing towards the formidable Dragoon Mountains. He was warned, “The only thing you’ll find there is your tombstone.”
Fate smiled upon him as he discovered a bountiful silver deposit, which he aptly christened the Tombstone Mine.
The news of Schieffelin's remarkable find spread like wildfire, and by the year 1880, a bustling town bearing the same name had sprung up around the mine.
Like a torrential mountain stream, riches poured forth from the hills, swelling the town's population to over 14,000 within a matter of a few years as a relentless tide of hopefuls converged upon the region in pursuit of wealth.
Emboldened by this influx, the town thrived, witnessing a rapid construction spree that birthed a vibrant community. Housing, hotels, stores, a theater, and a multitude of saloons and gambling halls emerged from the arid landscape, catering to the needs and desires of the burgeoning populace.
Shootout at the O.K. Corral
Although mining bestowed wealth upon Tombstone, the surrounding region retained its untamed essence as a vast desert wasteland, providing a haven for cattle rustlers, cowboys, and outlaws to thrive. Exploiting the newly established saloons, hotels, and services of Tombstone, these renegades frequently incited rowdy bar brawls and wreaked havoc, raising concerns among the eastern businessmen who had made substantial investments in the town's economy.
Tombstone's reputation as a lawless and untamed town was solidified with the rise of the infamous Cochise County Cowboys and their clashes with the law. The Earp brothers, led by the charismatic Wyatt Earp, took up the mantle of law enforcement, and their fateful encounter with the cowboy gang culminated in the legendary gunfight at the O.K. Corral.
"I have come to Tombstone with the intention to see justice done." – Wyatt Earp
This dramatic showdown would forever cement Tombstone into the annals of Western lore, immortalizing names like Doc Holliday and the Earp brothers in the pages of history.
The Town Too Tough To Die
As Tombstone sought to distance itself from its wild reputation, efforts were made to present a more civilized image. The town transformed, embracing the development of civic institutions, infrastructure, and cultural endeavors. Newspapers, theaters, schools, churches, and other civic organizations emerged, aiming to establish a sense of normalcy and progress.
As the 20th century dawned, Tombstone faced challenges that tested its resilience. The decline of mining in the region, coupled with economic fluctuations and natural disasters, posed significant challenges for the once-flourishing town.
Yet, the spirit of Tombstone refused to wane. The citizens fought to preserve the town's history, restoring buildings and establishing museums that celebrated its colorful past.
Tombstone boomed once again, this time as a living museum of the Wild West. Its dramatic past continues to capture the imagination, and the legends that unfolded within its borders still resonate today. The city stands as a living testament to the indomitable spirit of the American West.
When The West Was Wild
Embrace the time-turning ambiance of Tombstone as you step into a world frozen in the past. Traverse the historic streets of this legendary Arizona town, where you will witness gripping reenactments that transport you back to the era of cowboys, lawmen, and desperate outlaws.
From the heart-pounding drama of the O.K. Corral, where legendary gunfighters once clashed in a blaze of bullets, to the secrets of Tombstone's past at the Tombstone Courthouse State Historic Park, where captivating exhibits and artifacts vividly narrate the stories of the town's tumultuous history, the remnants of a bygone era come to life before your eyes.
“It’s just something about Tombstone that draws the people here.”
– Arizona Bill
The Past Comes Alive
Prepare to be captivated by the dramatic tapestry of entertainment that Tombstone has to offer. The authentic buildings that house saloons, shops, and museums on historic Allen Street will immerse you in the spirit of the Wild West, where the footsteps of legends that once walked its wooden boardwalks still echo.
Marvel at the original interior, adorned with vintage furnishings, period decor, and intriguing artifacts, of the Bird Cage Theatre, a former entertainment establishment (and brothel) that stands as a testament to Tombstone's Wild West legacy. Take part in the town’s seasonal festivals, parades, and reenactments that celebrate Tombstone’s heritage and ensure it remains alive.
When Nature Calls
Tombstone offers a captivating array of outdoor activities that allow you to immerse yourself in the natural beauty and rugged landscapes of the Arizona desert. In Tombstone, nature's drama unfolds at every turn, offering an unforgettable experience for those seeking adventure and a connection with the raw beauty of the Southwest.
Embark on a horseback riding adventure or trail hike to explore the vast expanses of the surrounding desert. Traverse rugged canyons, winding trails, and open plains, as you witness the breathtaking scenery and feel the exhilaration of riding through the untamed wilderness.
A Taste of the Times
Whether you're craving authentic Western cuisine or seeking a cozy spot for a satisfying meal, this historic Arizona town has options to suit every palate. For a taste of the Old West, head to one of the iconic saloons that dot Allen Street, such as the Crystal Palace Saloon.
Sink your teeth into juicy steaks, tender ribs, and savory burgers at The Longhorn Restaurant, all accompanied by hearty sides and washed down with your choice of refreshing libations. Immerse yourself in the rich history and rustic charm as you dine in an atmosphere reminiscent of the town's Wild West days.
Get to Know Tombstone
As you explore Tombstone, you'll uncover a captivating and authentic Western town that emanates an adventurous and nostalgic charm. Alongside the renowned Tombstone Junket Experience, here are a few must-visit local gems you should explore:
- Bird Cage Theatre: Discover this historic theater that operated as a saloon, theater, and gambling hall during the town's heyday.
- Boothill Graveyard: Pay a visit to the historic graveyard where some of Tombstone's notable residents and outlaws are buried to read the interesting epitaphs on the tombstones.
- O.K. Corral: Explore the historic site where the infamous gunfight between the Earp brothers and the Clanton-McLaury gang took place.
- Goodenough Mine: Go deep underground in one of the many silver mines that contributed to the city’s prosperity and learn about the area’s rich mining history.
- Tombstone Courthouse State Historic Park: Visit the restored courthouse, which now serves as a museum with exhibits showcasing the history of Tombstone, including its mining heritage and the famous gunfight.
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