Thursday, April 17, 2014

Oriental Saloon

The Oriental Saloon opened its doors on July 22 in the early 1800's in Tombstone, AZ.  It competed with The Crystal Palace as one of the up-scale places to enjoy a drink or two.  The peaceful mood of the place and beautiful decorations would be disturbed occasionally by the violence that usually occurred in town.  In December of 1881, City Marshal Virgil Earl was shot and wounded outside the establishment, and a year later, Billy Claiborne surprised Frank Leslie and made an attempt on his life.  He ended up killing a friend of Leslie's.  There were others killed in and around the Oriental Saloon, causing many to refer to it as "a regular slaughterhouse".

Today the Oriental Saloon sits on the corner of 5th and Allen Streets and is one of the many historic buildings with a violent history in this Wild West town.  Throughout the years, the building was once a clothing store, a steakhouse, and a drug store with a soda fountain.  Some have said that the ghost of Virgil Earp has been seen hanging around the Oriental Saloon, perhaps still looking for those who ambushed him.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Silver King Hotel

Built in the 1800's, the Silver King Hotel was another place where miners would stay while employed at the mines.  It was first named the Bisbee Hotel, and is another great place to stay while in Bisbee.  It is a short distance to any shopping, eating and historic establishments.  
Check out their website for more information on this hotel: 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Texas John Slaughter

He stood at 5’-2” with dark eyes, and had a bad stutter.  Always seen on his person was a pearl-handled .44 and a 10-gauge, double-barreled, sawed-off shotgun.  He was born John Horton Slaughter on October 2, 1841.  Slaughter was “an American lawman, Civil War soldier, and gambler.  Over the course of his long life, John Slaughter served as an honorable soldier and lawmen throughout much of the Southwest. He fought in many skirmishes against all sorts of enemies, including Union soldiers, hostile natives, and Mexican and American outlaws.

He served in the military as a Confederate soldier in the American Civil War.  After his service, he was affiliated with the Texas Rangers until 1874 when he started a cattle business with his brother.   He married Eliza Harris on August 4, 1871, and together they had four children.  Sadly, only two of his kids would only see their adulthood.  The other two died at young ages.  After Eliza died of smallpox in 1877 in Tucson, he married for the second time, two years later to an eighteen year old woman named Viola.  They never had biological children, but adopt a quite a few.  His regular gambling games became a problem and were a strain on the marriage.  Viola became angry and he was in jeopardy of losing her.  Slaughter’s final years were spent at the San Bernardino Ranch in southern Arizona.  This historic site is kept well-preserved.

The Slaughter House in Tombstone.

Friday, April 11, 2014

The Crystal Palace Saloon

"Originally known as the Golden Eagle Brewing Company, this establishment was one of early Tombstone's first saloons. It occupied just a small lot of about 50 by 30 feet while the brewery was in another structure to the rear. Named after its builder, Benjamin Wehrfritz, the Wehrfritz Building was expanded by adding a second story to house the offices for such notables as U.S. Deputy Marshal Virgil Earp, attorney George W. Berry, and Dr. George E. Goodfellow. It is even known that "Buckskin" Frank Leslie was a night watchman here for a short time!"
(Source and quote:

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

The Bisbee Inn/Hotel La More

Located on Ok Street in Bisbee, AZ sits the Bisbee Inn/Hotel La More.  It opened in 1912 and was the place where miners used to rest their weary bones.  It later was a Peace Corps training center, and then in 1983 it was converted into a hotel.  This family owned establishment is the second grandest hotel in historic old Bisbee.  The family has renovated it back to its former glory using original furnishings.  The inn/hotel is located near shops, restaurants, and other amusements.  Most of these places you can walk to from the hotel.

For a more detailed history and hauntings of this establishment, check out Debe Branning's article at the Examiner's website:
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