At the now famous stop sign, I turn left. In a couple of miles, I arrive in beautiful downtown Globe, Arizona.
In a previous day trippin' ride report that I read, the writer wrote the Globe was "not much". From the point of view of somebody who's just passing through on a 500 mile, one day circle through eastern Arizona, that's true. I, on the other hand, had the good fortune, or misfortune depending on you perspective, to live in this area a few years ago. I only lived there for a year or so, so I guess, even if you live here, it's not much.
One of the good things, in that year, was that I got to take a tour of downtown Globe, given by somebody who'd lived there all their life and knew the "real" history, the stuff you'll never find out by reading the Chamber of Commerce brochures.
So, here we go.........
All small town tours seem to start at the courthouse, so we'll start there too. This is the first courthouse of signifigance for Gila County, Arizona. The county has since moved to one of those new two story buildings on the edge of town that has no signifigance at all so there's no pictures of the new place.
The old courthouse is now the community arts center. The first two floors were administrative offices, with the courtroom and the judges chambers being on the third floor. I know that first hand. No, I was never in court there (I have been in the courtroom in the new courthouse but that's another story.) The community theatre people were putting on a play a few years ago that had 26 actors in it and I got drafted. I even had a few lines, one of which I forgot one night.
Now, if were convicted in Gila County and were sentenced to jail time, this is where you went.......
Because the old jail is right behind the courthouse, they didn't take any chances that you might escape. They marched you out the back door of the courthouse, across this walkway and you went STRAIGHT to jail!
As we start our walking tour through downtown Globe, the tour guide says, "See that building across the street? Years ago, the first floor was a doctor's office, upstairs was a whorehouse".
This building used to be the hardware store, upstairs was a whorehouse.
One building was the pharmacy, the other one was the laundry. Upstairs in both buildings were whorehouses.
This building has always been a bar. Upstairs was a whorehouse.
I can't vouch for those other buildings but I've been upstairs in this building. No, not when it was a whorehouse. I happened to know somebody who knew somebody who knew the owners. One Saturday night I got to take a "tour" of the upstairs. Everything was pretty much as it was 100 years ago, a bunch of little rooms, or cribs, where the deeds went down.
Also, don't hold me to what the building used to be....on the first floor! As for the second floor, that's exactly what the tour guide said.
I took some pictures of the other side of the street. All the buildings look decidedly different from the buildings we just saw. The reason for that is that, years ago, they wanted to widen the main drag in Globe. Trouble was, all the buildings were built almost at the edge of the street. There was the two lane main street, a small sidewalk and then the building. So, what they did was to buy the front 25' of the buildings, tear them off, build the new wider street and put "new" metal fronts on the buildings. Now one side of the street is original and other is "newer".
Now, before I head out of Globe, I wanted to share a building that's actually in the record books......
It has to do with the owner buying bricks for his new building and telling the contractor to use them all up. If you give your contractor those instructions, this is what you'll get......
After the brief tour of Globe, I ride east on Hwy 60, heading towards Pima/Thatcher/Safford, Arizona.
As I ride through Ft. Thomas, Arizona, I stumble across this......
Ft. Thomas doesn't qualify as a wide spot in the road today. It's hard to imagine it back then.
After riding through the towns of Pima, Thatcher and Safford, I continue east on Highway 70 in search of Hwy 191, which will take me north towards four corners.
At the intersections of Highways 75, 78 and 191, I come across an old drive-in movie screen. The only thing at the intersection, besides the old movie screen, is a gas station. No wonder the place failed. There must have been more here at one time, that or they anticipated the area would grow up around the intersection of three highways.
From the drive-in, it's just a short ride into the towns of Clifton and Morenci. In Arizona, these towns are pretty much said together,
Clifton/Morenci. Clifton was once a thriving mining town but now it looks like this.......
I'm guessing that the fact that Clifton is sandwiched between to sheer mountain faces, had something to do with the fact that it has pretty much died....nowhere to expand.
Morenci, Clifton's partner in crime, will be my stop for the night.
Tomorrow, it's north on Arizona's Tail of the Dragon, Highway 191.