Haunted Tombstone

Hey, Readers. It’s time for another legend. It’s been a few weeks since I posted about a haunting, so I thought this would be a good time.

Tombstone, Arizona is a historic town founded in 1879 by prospector Ed Schieffelin. Known for its silver mines, it became one of the last boomtowns on the American frontier. It grew from a population of one hundred to around 14,000 in less than seven years. Today, a little over 1,300 reside there.

I visited there in 2006 while on a business trip to Tucson. My coworker and I took an early flight so we’d have time to see this legendary town. If you ask a resident what Tombstone first became famous for, they would say the silver. However, I doubt many would even know the town’s name if not for the infamous shootout at the O.K. Corral involving the Earp brothers and Doc Holiday against Cowboy members Tom and Frank McLaury and Billy Clanton.

Tombstone was known for its lawlessness, or blatant disregard for the law, which resulted in the deaths of several people. As you might imagine, there are said to be lots of ghosts that still reside there, some even walk the streets.

On October 28, 1888, Curly Bill Brocius, a leader of the Cowboy faction gunned down Marshall Fred White. He died two days later, and his spirit is said to haunt the street near the shooting site.

Some have claimed to have seen another apparition, dressed in a long black frock coat on several occasions crossing the street. This occurrence is near the place where Virgil Earp was ambushed and shot in the arm. Earp lived but was crippled for life. Some believe it is his spirit that haunts the place. Interestingly, the ghost never makes it across the street.

As you might guess, the O.K. Corral itself is said to be haunted by the ghosts of the Cowboys who died there. Several witnesses claim to see fading apparitions dressed in cowboy attire, often with guns drawn. Others say they feel cold spots in various places.

The graves of Billy Clanton, Frank McLaury, and Tom McLaury in Boot Hill Cemetery. The sign to the right states they were murdered on the streets of Tombstone.

Visitors to Boot Hill Cemetery report seeing strange lights and hearing unidentifiable noises in the old graveyard. Some say Billy Clanton walks from his grave back toward Tombstone. A number of people say spirits appear in photographs.

My coworker and I visited Boot Hill but didn’t witness any strange sights or sounds. However, another coworker went there with a group of friends. One of them took a photo of her standing near a grave marker. To Tami’s left was a dark image of what looked like a cowboy. This was in broad daylight. She showed me the photo, and I easily saw the apparition.

These are only a few of the reported sightings in Tombstone. But a town with its history is sure to have some hauntings.

37 thoughts on “Haunted Tombstone

  1. Thanks for a delightfully spooky post, Joan. Would love to see Tombstone for myself one day, but I’d probably have to go in the dead of winter to avoid heat stroke. 🙄Still … it would be a very interesting trip, and I’d definitely want to visit Boot Hill, too.

    Thanks for sharing! 😊❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve never gotten to visit Tombstone, but would love to. How wonderful that you did visit and I love that an apparition showed up in a co-worker’s photo. No doubt, the area is haunted! Great post, Joan!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was years ago, but I still wish I had the text she sent me with the photo. I showed it to my husband without telling him the story and asked what he saw. He immediately said, “A cowboy.”

      Liked by 1 person

    1. A good piece of history to include. Years ago, I read a time travel story where a character went back to Tombstone just before Morgan Earp was murdered. It was interesting to read.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Like minds with ghost stories. It’s a neat place to visit. I can’t imagine anyone wanting to live there, however. Although we didn’t see any ghosts, I would have been happy to see Kurt Russell and Val Kilmer. 😉 (Loved the movie Tombstone.)

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Fascinating! I just checked MapQuest, and Tombstone is only 4.5 hours from where I live. I’m definitely going to visit in the near future. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s great, Gwen. I would recommend going before it gets hot. Summers are unbearable in Southern Arizona. It’s funny. When we got on Interstate 10 headed east from Tucson, a sign said it was around 300 miles to El Paso, Texas. That’s less than half the distance from El Paso to where I live in eastern Texas.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve always wanted to visit Tombstone. Like you, I went to Arizona for a business trip. On my free day, my husband and I went to Sedona instead (which is an awesome place). We didn’t have time to make it back, but if I ever do, I’d love to visit Tombstone. The historical aspects draw me, especially that infamous shoot-out.

    That is so weird about your friend, Tami. What an awesome photo to keep!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I would love to visit Sedona. Took four trips to Tucson but never made it there. It would have been nice if John had been able to accompany me and then we could have taken some vacation days.

      I am glad to have visited Tombstone, however. Lots of interesting history. I wish I still had the text where Tami sent me the photo. If so, I would have posted it here.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. There are countless stories of other incidents. We went into the Birdcage Theater. There is a bar in front that still has a bullet in the woodwork. Somewhere I have a close-up shot of it.

      Liked by 1 person

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