Tombstone Tourist Attractions
In the southeastern corner of Arizona is Tombstone the famous Wild West township of the silver boom.The town has preserved many of the original buildings and in fact restored them to the point that they no longer look historical. Some are replicas. Actors dressed in Western style walk through town and staged gunfights breakout in the streets.However, the town now has almost a polished feel to it. The historic Boothill Graveyard which once felt like you were walking through an old cemetery now has freshly painted grave markers which look like they were erected last year. The town has a much more commercial feel than historical feel although the history is still very evident.
The OK Corral is perhaps the most well known site in Tombstone. This was the scene of the famous shoot-out in 1881 between the Earp and Clanton gangs, a legendary event in the Old West. Today life-size replicas of the nine gunfighters stand on the spots where they began the gunfight, giving a sense of the distance, or lack of distance, between each of the men, and the overall layout. The setting remains much the same as it was in 1881.A re-enactment of the gunfight takes place daily inside the OK Corral at 2 p.m.
Address: 326 East Allen Street, Box 367, Tombstone, AZ 85638-0367, United States
Opening hours: 9am-5pm
Entrance fee in USD: Adult $5.50, Child 5 & under FREE
Camillus Fly Studio
The Camillus Fly Studio can only be reached through the OK Corral. It is a recreated studio and boardinghouse of the pioneer photographer.
Bird Cage Theatre
The Bird Cage Theatre in Tombstone was built in 1881, and never closed during its first three years. A theater, dance hall, saloon and brothel, the Bird Cage is said to have 140 bullet holes in the wall and ceiling.Original fixtures and furnishings are still on display with the hand painted stage and orchestra pit in original condition. The stage of the Bird Cage Theatre features photos and stories of the many entertainers that performed. Some rooms located below the bird cage, which were sealed off since 1889, have been opened to the public. They remain as they were found in recent days.The building is also believed by many to be haunted.
Crystal Palace Saloon
The Crystal Palace Saloon in Tombstone was built in 1882 following a fire that destroyed the original Golden Eagle Brewing Company which stood at this location. The new structure was designed as an upscale watering hole and quickly became the best dining establishment in the town. It changed hands and businesses many times over the years. In 1964 it was completely reconstructed, maintaining the character and detail of the original.Today visitors can still come here for a meal and see the history. Costumed characters mingle with visitors and the Crystal Palace has still maintained much of its past glory.
The Tombstone "Epitaph" paper was founded in 1880 by John Philip Clum. It was the local newspaper of the day and covered the stories which today comprise Tombstone's history. One of the first "big" stories was the gunfight at the O.K. Corral.The Epitaph itself has a long history but is today still being published by students in the Community Journalism class at the University of Arizona. The newspaper has taken a much different focus, and still reports as if it were back in the olden days. The paper is designed to be fun and entertaining, while portraying the history of the Old West.The original press is on display.
Allen Street in Tombstone is the tourist main street through town, where visitors will inevitably find themselves. This is where many of the major attractions are, as well as the restaurants and shops, and the famous old saloons. Allen Street is also the scene of occasional historical re-enactments, where performers put on staged gunfights and barroom brawls. Even if nothing is taking place, actors roam the street in western costumes.On one of the corners on Allen Street is the famous O.K. Corral.
Boothill Graveyard in Tombstone is the final resting place for all the town's hanging, lynching, and shootout victims. The number of graves is estimated at 276, many of them unmarked. Boot Hill was founded in 1878 and houses many unknown grave markers because so few people at the time carried identification. Many were only known by their nicknames!In more recent years the graveyard was restored, with the crosses redone and repainted, giving it a much less authentic feel. Unfortunately the graveyard looks quite new and has lost much of its appeal.
Courthouse State Historic Park
The Tombstone Courthouse, now a State Historic Park, was built in 1882, but abandoned in 1929 when the county seat moved to Bisbee. The courthouse housed the sheriff, recorder, treasurer, and the board of supervisors, with a jail located at the rear.The building is today a museum, where the lives of local citizens from the late 19th and early 18th C are portrayed through antiques and artifacts. Outside in the courtyard stands a replica of the gallows where criminals were publicly hanged.
Rose Tree Museum
The Rose Tree Museum in Tombstone is named for the Lady Banksia tree that has been growing here since it was sent from Scotland in 1885. The Guinness Book of World Records confirms yearly that the world's largest rosebush is located here, it covers nearly 9,000 square feet and looks more like a tree than a bush, with a thick stock and the branches laid out on trellises.The museum itself displays local artifacts from the 1880s, along with books.
The Historama offers a multimedia presentation, narrated by Vincent Price, which describes the history of Tombstone from the first Apache inhabitants to modern times. Facts surrounding the OK Corral Gunfight are also presented. This is a good overview for visitors looking for a brief but comprehensive idea of the history of the town.
St Paul's Episcopal Church
St Paul's Episcopal Church in Tombstone was built in 1881, and is the oldest standing Protestant Church in Arizona. It is made of adobe bricks and is a National Historic Landmark. This little church has an interesting design with a single tower and steep pitched roofs that match the arched doorway of the main entrance. A lone cross stands on the top of the tower.
Schieffelin Hall is named for the man who founded Tombstone, Ed Schieffelin. Ed's brother, Al Schieffelin, built the hall in 1881. The hall served as a theater, recital hall and meeting place for mine officials, doctors, lawyers, and businessmen.
Silver Nugget Museum (Closed)
THIS ATTRACTION IS CLOSED.The Silver Nugget, housed in a restored brothel, is just one of several Tombstone museums showing artifacts from the Old West era, including photos, guns and furnishings.
Tombstone Historical Museum (closed)
Map of Tombstone Attractions