In 1903, the New York Times declared that Jerome was the "Wickedest City in the West." Jerome, a billion dollar copper mining mecca, was once a booming city in Arizona. It is said that the owner of the Verde Copper Company, William Andrews Clark, provided a heady mix of booze, opium, gambling and flesh peddlers for his delighted miners. Now, it's a touristy ghost town carved into Cleopatra Hill like a tiered wedding cake. The Jerome Grand Hotel is said to be one of the most haunted places in Arizona - with numerous spine tingling tales attached to it like a bloody tick: including the ghost of Claude Harvey, whose body was found murdered under the hotel's old elevator shaft.
At 5,000 feet, there's a great view of the barren and sprawling Verde Valley.
The color of the bulb hints at the crumbling structure's former business.
A nice rental.
Do you see the climbers scaling the building?
They are the only ghosts you are guaranteed to see in town.
Well, there's this guy too.
No trip to Jerome is complete without a pit stop at Desert Diamond Distillery in Cottonwood, Arizona. Real spirits!
I wish we would have glided along on one of the many ghost tours while in Jerome. Instead, we hightailed it back down to the Red Rocks of Sedona - not wanting to risk encountering "Headless Charlie" or "the Lady in Red" after dark. (female ghosts always seem to be wearing red or white) There are 88 miles of darkened, memory filled tunnels beneath the old town. It could be an underground playground for ghosts in the bowels of night. You never know.
The Awesome Links:
P.S. These days, no tale is as scary as real life. My heart goes out to the friends and family of those killed in Las Vegas.