Recently, John and I decided to take one of our road trips.
We both love history, and have a special place in our hearts for old west towns. Some are still thriving, sometimes they're are barely holding on, some are complete ghost towns, and other times there's nothing left except the foundations of buildings that fell long ago.
The ghost towns, although very interesting, seem a bit sad and lonely to me, but the towns that only have foundations left are the saddest of all.
Sometimes we're able to find pictures of what was there, but oftentimes we can't find a thing. So, we like to imagine what it all looked like when a place was bustling with townsfolk or what a house or building might have looked like when it was still standing.
It never fails to amaze me that people just picked up and left one day, never to return.
Honestly, I could wax poetic about that all day and probably will some other time, but I'll stop there and return to the road trip ;)
Anyway, although we usually have a destination in mind, we tend to stop here and there, willy nilly, taking our time.
Let's just say that, if there's an historical marker, we can't pass it up.
Some interesting places are found that way, but being distracted also makes it so you don't always end up at the destination where you were headed in the first place.
This was one of those times.
We left Tucson on Saturday morning, with John's three pups:
Bentley (AKA BeeBee)...
Miss Daisy the lap dog...
I had no idea where we were going, because John originally wanted to surprise me with a trip to Clifton, which neither of us had been to, but there was a lot to see on the way, which is why we never made it.
For instance, distractions like this:
We had been in the car for about an hour or so and after a couple of stops at some tiny towns (I forgot to take pictures... darn it!) we decided to stop and let the pups out to stretch their legs and have some fun on the Gila River (Gila is pronounced he-la).
Pretty, isn't it?
Personally, I had no idea that there was anything this serene and beautiful in the lower part of Arizona, but John likes to prove me wrong about the desert being a
dirty, ugly barren place with only cactus to look at, and has quite a few times. In fact, it's really kind of growing on me. Not as much as the pine tree filled mountains of Northern Arizona, where I live, but I truly can't say that I hate the desert anymore.
Don't tell him I said that though ;)
You can read more about this area 'here'.
The two of us had a really good time,
but I think the pups enjoyed it the most ;)
After everyone was all tuckered out from running and playing in the water, we headed to our next stop, which happened to be Globe.
It started out as a mining town and was founded in 1875.
|image via Arizona100|
Of course it doesn't look like that anymore (I wish!), but it's a really sweet town that's been kept up pretty well.
They have quite a few antique stores, including this one, called Hill Street Mall:
The building was previously a Coca-Cola plant and also a Safeway grocery store.
The lady that was working there was a sweetheart and funny to boot!
John bought me a replacement for the tiny blue Pyrex bowl I broke recently.
And I found him some hankies :)
Many of the original buildings still exist, including the old courthouse, built in 1905, which is now used as a center for the arts.
|Image via Google search|
And do you see that little old grey building behind it, on the right?
It's the old jail that served from 1910 until 1981.
Yes, you read that right.
It finally closed down the same year that President Reagan first took office.
In other words, I was almost a teenager when it closed!
They give free tours, so of course we had to take a quick one ;)
Our friendly tour guide, Rick Benning showed us around the old jail and had many stories to tell about some of the infamous prisoners who stayed here.
He even asked to snap a picture of us in jail:
He said we looked too darn happy to be in there ;)
I know what he means by that, as it was definitely a very dark, creepy place and it was freezing inside!
Below is the door to the pulley system that locks up the cells, which Rick demonstrated for us.
Yikes! What a sound that was!
We both swear it's haunted.
In fact, a paranormal team actually tried to stay there overnight, but left in the early morning hours.
I couldn't do it!
This bridge is three stories up and it's where the prisoners left the courthouse to go into the jail to serve their sentences.
This is looking up towards the top story of the courthouse, next to the bridge.
Below is the door to the old Sheriff's office on the back of the courthouse building.
It was definitely not a place that I wanted to stay for more than 20 minutes, so can't imagine living there for years, much less in a tiny shared cell.
You would think that it would be a real crime deterrent, but knowing how many people ended up there, I suppose it wasn't.
You can read more about the jail 'here'.
After a stop at The Old Dominion (which is where they used to mine for copper), a quick outdoor meal with the pups, at Clint's Blue Line BBQ, and driving through a few more small towns, (I forgot to take pictures... again!) we headed home....
and enjoyed a glorious Arizona sunset.
It was a beautiful ending to a perfect day :)