This afternoon I took my daughter downtown to Whisky Row, an old part of Prescott with the original buildings from when Prescott was the Arizona capital in the late 1860s-1870s. It is a tourist location now with museums, shops and restaurants but it is fun to explore the area because of the history and if you were going to ask, yes many of the buildings are considered haunted.
We started with lunch at the Palace Saloon, which was opened in 1877 and is the oldest restaurant in the state. Virgil Earp lived in the area at the time and would visit the Palace Saloon before moving to Tombstone with his brothers Wyatt and Morgan. Doc Holliday would play poker in the Palace Saloon too before moving to Tombstone with the Earp brothers.
The saloon has changed hands over the years and was modernized but about a decade ago the owners restored the saloon to how it looked after it was rebuilt following a fire in 1900. When the fire was ripping through the area residents went in to the Palace Saloon and physically carried the actual bar out of the restaurant and across the street to the capital building to save it from being destroyed and when the buildings were being rebuilt the bar was moved back inside so the actual bar you stand at to order a beer is the same bar Earp and Holliday stood at to order a beer in 1877. I didn’t take a picture of the bar because it was full of people and kind of loses its historical luster when a bunch of old guys wearing fanny packs and crocs are sitting there talking about where they are from and how long they have been snowbirds.
Here is a picture of the bar, I didn’t take this photo it is from their site. I cannot imagine how many people would have been required to move this gigantic piece of solid wood across the street while there is a fire in the area but I do know they should have gotten free beer for the rest of their life.
I took some pictures around the restaurant, a bit kitschy but it wasn’t overdone. The first picture is of two of the brothel rooms, they have a prostitute mannequin at the top of the stairs. It was a little odd explaining to my 13-year old daughter that prostitution was legal and that those were two of the rooms used.
The next picture is a memorial for the Yarnell 19, they were 19 Prescott Firefighters that perished during the Yarnell Hill fire on June 28, 2013. During the recent Goodwin fire there was a lot of anxiety among the emergency crews because on June 28th the Goodwin fire was spreading quickly and being the fourth anniversary of the passing of the Yarnell 19 was on everyone’s mind.
The third picture is the front window of the saloon, they don’t have much of a fan fare type promotion. There is a Palace Saloon sign above with this in their window. Quite easy to miss if you didn’t know it was there. Behind where Griffey is hanging out there are steps going down to the original jail, it was underneath the saloon. This section is caged off and locked so you can only access it from the kitchen inside the saloon, they now use the area as storage but the jail cells are still located down there.
I talked with our server for a while, I love paranormal and the Ghost Adventures did a show here last year so it was cool to hear about some of the stories and he told us about some of the experiences some of the employees have dealt with over the years.
If the story is not enough to get you to come take a look if you are in the area then maybe this will, here is my bison burger. The bison is from a Northern Arizona farm, the buns are baked in town and the fries are made fresh in the restaurant so everything is local.