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Today in Arizona History: Week of May 12

Tombstone circa 1881 (Courtesy Arizona Historical Society)

Tombstone circa 1881 (Courtesy Arizona Historical Society)

Today

On this date in 1886, fire destroyed the Grand Central pumphouse in Tombstone, causing the mines to flood and shutting down all mining operations.

On this date in 1887, the Tombstone Epitaph reported that a volcano had erupted in the Dragoon Mountains following an earthquake.

On this date in 1897, Ed Schiefflin, discoverer of the Tombstone silver mines, died.

On this date in 1913, Herbert Brown, who had come to Arizona in 1873, engaged in lumbering in the Santa Rita Mountains and in the mercantile business in Tucson, died. Brown was the owner of the Tucson Citizen and the Tucson Post newspapers and in 1902 was appointed warden of the Yuma Prison, and operated the Gondolfo Hotel there.

Monday, May 13

On this date in 1846, President James K. Polk declared that a state of war existed between the United States and Mexico.

On this date in 1905, the dams at Greer and St. John gave way and the St. Johns Valley suffered heavy flood damage.

On this date in 1920, the city of Tucson charged that Phoenix was holding up its census figures until it could learn Tucson’s population — and then increase the numbers for Phoenix to put it ahead.

On this date in 1929, a forest fire that had burned for days in the Patagonia Mountains was finally put out, just in time to save the town of Harshaw.

Tuesday, May 14

On this date in 1884, the first Arizona Industrial Exposition was held in Phoenix.

On this date in 1903, the Salt River Valley Project was authorized by the Bureau of Reclamation.

On this date in 1910, 1,000 lots were sold in Parker in a single day.

On this date in 1913, John J. Gospers, Secretary of State of the Territory of Arizona during the administration of Gov. John C. Fremont, died as a charity patient in Los Angeles County Hospital.

On this date in 1922, 60-year-old undelivered letters were found with the skeleton of a Pony Express carrier in the cellar of an old cabin near Oatman.

Wednesday, May 15

On this date in 1899, the Phoenix Daily Herald ran an ad placed by a local contractor asking residents why they continue to spend $5, $10 or $15 a month on rent when they could own a lot in the heart of Phoenix for $65 to $200.

On this date in 1899, the Phoenix Daily Herald reported the departure of John Gorman, who was the tollgate keeper on the Riverside-to-Globe road until it was abandoned. Gorman took tolls for 18 years, often with a pistol or shotgun in his hand.

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