Re-enactment of the gun fight at Ok Corral
The Town too Tough to Die," Tombstone is known in wild west's history as the notorious mining camp for lawlessness,violence, and debauchery - all eclipsed by the infamous gunfight at the o.k. corral between the earps and the clamptons.
Many of the buildings from the 1880s still stand to this day; and with its dirt road through main street and coach tours, one feels as though they have stepped back in time.
Upon my arrival, i was so excited, but had much difficulty in discerning which part of this old western town was original and which one was a movie-set. i have to admit that i was faced with great disappointment, as this entire town was turned into a giant gift shop! however, as i am on the topic of gift shops, there was one in particular that i liked.
this one was across the way from the o.k. corral, and housed some of your basic "desert cowboy" items. strange fossils, horse blankets, dream catchers, cowboy hats, guns and rifles, sarsaparilla, and "hotter than hell" seasoning.
anyone ever heard of the "habanera" pepper? this is the hottest pepper in the world, acording to the hot food harbingers that bring you not only "beyond hell hot sauce", but also "kick in the ass" and "whoop ass" BBQ sauce. oh yeah, and they also purveyed "pits of hell" chili mix. of course i had to purchase some...my aunt will love the seasoning because she loves to cook cajun/creole foods. ahhhhhh yes, life certainly is grand down here!
of course tourists would be subjected to a re-enactment of the shoot-out, which took place in 1881 between the earps, doc holliday, the mcLaurys, and clantons.
this show marked the first time that i used a digital camera, and the lithium battery ran out before the show was over, but i did manage to get some nice photos. now, if i can figure out how to do it, i will send a file of the pictures along. if not, i actually have a website and could post them to that. have not done anything to the site...don't have the time anyhow.
big nose kate, doc's girlfriend at the time, had a saloon, which i visited on the last leg of the trip. more than half the crowd in the saloon was stuck in time. the women had feathers in their hair, bustiers, frilly skirts, and fishnet stockings tucked in dainty leather boots. the men cast a more intimidating appearance as they stood complete with spurs, gunbelts, and wide-brimmed cowboy hats.
main street with classic car
of course, there were different styles of dress. the sherrifs and gentlemen were wearing black, white banded-collared shirts, and black frock coats. the "rough riders" had the chaps and leather vests, and i especially loved the mean clicking of their spurs as they stomped into the cool comforts of the saloon. it was thrilling for me, just walking in the footsteps of wyatt earp and doc holliday, but discontent, all the same, with the modernization of this town. mainly speaking of gift shops, here. bah! i purchased a black and white photo of the "tombstone" gang from the movie, starring val kilmer and kurt russell. we had it matted and framed in a barb wire and bullet frame, into which was carved TOMBSTONE. this will be a birthday present to my aunt, as she loves that movie soooo much!
on our return trip, we stopped in the town of coolidge, to visit the "casa grande" ruins.
locals dressed up for 'gunslinger' days
these were what remained of an almost 700 year old hohokam village. this is one of the largest buildings in this tribe's recorded history, and what purpose it served is still a mystery. scientist deduced that it might have been an ancient observatory for the stars. the building itself was about four stories high, and made of "caliche", a type of clay-mud found in the area, and saguaro ribs. (cactus) for some structural support, pine and fir was imported from over 60 miles away....now remember, this was AD 1300! we were unable to walk around inside the structure, as the many years of weathering and human tampering had made it quite unstable. but, i met my first ground squirrel and learned some ancient history of the area.