Bisbee Travel Guide
Arizona is a state with a great history of clashes between cowboys and Indians battling for territory. Perhaps the only name less notorious that Geronimo is Cochise, and it’s in Cochise County where the town Bisbee can be found. The picturesque town is situated in equally picturesque surroundings, wide plains and the craggy Mule Mountains. 90 miles south of Tucson, the area is home to Bisbee, along with many other towns with a similar past.
Like the other towns in the region, Bisbee was founded as a mining pit. And as the other former mining towns perched on hills or scratched into mountainsides, Bisbee was named after its New York patron investor, Judge DeWitt Bisbee, who funded the Copper Queen Mine, which was adjacent to the present day city.
It was in 1880 when boom time began for the copper, silver, and gold mines of the area, and Bisbee were incorporated as a town in 1902. While World War I raged in Europe, the copper miners here made their fortune to meet the demands for the metal to be used for the war effort. It was with the same fate as other prominent Arizona mining towns that Bisbee was all but abandoned save for those who stayed to continue with strip mining.
Following the formula of many other cities of the kind, the cheap as chips land prices and attractive isolated setting made way for the artsy fartsies to move in, and since the 80s Bisbee has reinvented itself as a hip getaway for not only yuppie baby boomers, but also as a tourist destination in its own right, with its restored Victorian houses and Art Deco City Hall.
Lavender Pit: thankfully inactive, this reminder of the open pit mining that went on here sits in the center of town.
Thomas Ranch: a family owned ranch that has been operating continuously since the town’s founding in 1902.
Bisbee Mining and Historical Museum: here you can relive the legacy of this tenacious town from its days as a Wild West outpost to the thriving community of today.
Warren Ball Park: claims to be the sport’s oldest park still in use, dating from 1909.