There are a lot of little “living ghost towns” in Arizona. They were mining communities at one time that drew people. Sometimes they survived long enough to have a post office and a school. All of them had saloons, honky tonk girls and served pop-skull, tanglefoot, red-eye, and oh-be-joyful. Jimjams (delirium tremens) were said to be a problem.

“Rattlesnake Valley, over yonder, ain’t never been good for much exceptin’ the finest breed of serpents an’ horn-toads a man ever see outside a circus or the jimjams.”- Jackson Gregory.

One of them is in the spotlight on Virtual Mirage today — Chloride, AZ. The place is far removed from the rush and crush of humanity, being but a fifteen mile or so drive north of Kingman.
Your sermonette for this Sunday is that you need to stop and take in some of the local color when you’re rushing down the Interstate, because every place has its story, and it’s likely more interesting than the Gulp-and-Guzzle, snooze and stop where you bolt down carbs and stretch your legs.
Chloride Today

Chloride about 80 years ago
Best guess, there are about 250 people living in Chloride today.
It was a more lively place 80 years ago. Yes there were gun fights (usually an ambush), claim jumping, run aways (soiled doves) working their way west to San Francisco, etc. But most of those took place more than 80 years ago.


  1. Love these places. I was fortunate to grow up as a young lad in the California gold rush country during late 50's and early 60's. I got to experience first hand little back waters like Fiddletown and Drytown and Volcano before they became tourist traps.

    Here is a cool live steam video (Yeah, I'm also a train nut). The background scenery brings back a lot of memories.

  2. more interesting than the Gulp-and-Guzzle, snooze and stop where you bolt down carbs and stretch your legs.

    Good advice. Too few will understand, or care, about what they are seeing. Even in my dotage I can be inspired looking at what people have created out of bare earth.

    Will the WWM soon qualify?

  3. That's not something (steam locomotive) that you see every day. In Arizona there is the Verde Valley Railway and the Grand Canyon Railway, each of which is about the same distance from the White Wolf Mine. The Durango-Silverton Railway is one of my very favorite, though. Worth the trip.

  4. I love little towns, so thank you for the Sunday Sermonette spotlight.
    Awesome news on the hovel. Though I guess now it is closer to a cabin now?
    Be safe and God bless.

  5. I love searching out places like that Nd there'several right on the doorstop. They may not last much longer, so I make it a kind of mission to visit them.

    Of course if it gets much hotter they'll all ignite, but I can't help that bar paying the weather tax. Which isn't going to happen.

  6. But last year there was so much water…

    Texas Hill Country has many little towns like that. Itasca comes to mind and that brings to mind Karen's burrito stand. If I was in Texas now, you know where I'd be sitting down for lunch.

  7. Our daughter-in-law's younger sister gave me half a dozen books on local history for our first Christmas here, and since we've finally begun "exploring" the area, I dug them out to read.

    Places I've been driving past since we first started coming here are now springing to life in my mind. Turns out the Laporte and Bellvue communities are far older than I'd realized, with Laporte being the first "white settlement" in the area, started by Antoine Janis and his Ogala/Lakota wife, Elk Woman.

    Many of the little communities in the Poudre Canyon area were started as "Tie Hacking" camps for the Westward expansion of the railroad.

    Just amazing stuff to actually see after reading about it History class in grade-school.

  8. Yes, and it humbles me. To think of those that came here in the 1830's, and what they found and made of it, makes me see history in a different light.

    Kinda like watching "Victory at Sea", and then volunteering on the Iowa for 5-1/2 years…..

  9. That old gas station would make a tight little hide out – from the law, or the bank, or the ex, or angry red headed Faroese lasses.

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