Thursday, January 22, 2015

Boothill Grave Yard - 1/21/15

Boothill is a common name for burial grounds of gunfighters in reference to the term "dying with your boots on." The most famous Boothill Graveyard, is here in Tombstone, AZ, and is a very popular stop for visitors to the area.

Admission to the Grave Yard is free, but we purchased a guide to 250 graves that are marked (although many are unknowns) for $3. The grave yard has also been placed on the list of National Register of Historic Places by the Department of the Interior.

This is a monument that was erected by the American Legion in the 1940s in memorial to those unidentified veterans, pioneers, and settlers buried in the graveyard.

Many outlaws, their victims, and those who died violent deaths (murder, suicide, etc.) are buried here along with upstanding citizens  (including children) who died of diseases (scarlet fever, diphtheria, pneumonia) or natural death.

The graveyard is believed to hold approximately 300 graves although only 250 are marked. Many of the Jewish and Chinese citizens of Tombstone were buried in unmarked graves. A memorial was built to commemorate the Jewish people that are buried here.

Chinese graves are in one section of the graveyard.

Some Native Americans are also buried here.

As well as those killed by Native Americans.

The cemetery was "closed" in 1886 when a new "City Cemetery" was opened in Tombstone.

The graveyard was not maintained and fell into disrepair. Many of the grave markers were stolen as souvenirs. Townspeople came to together in the 1940s to restore the graveyard. In particular, Emmett Crook Nunnelley was a dedicated volunteer, and was the last person to be buried at the cemetery (in 1946).

Perhaps the most famous grave sites here are those of the three individuals killed at the Gunfight at O.K. Corral (Billy Clanton, Frank McLaury, and Tom McLaury).

And the grave of another Clanton located behind the ones shown above.

Wondering around this graveyard provides a clear mental picture of the violence of the old West here in Tombstone. Very interesting.


No comments:

Post a Comment