Early Tombstone Paper: Documents, Billheads & Letterheads

This page will contain scanned images from our collection of documents, billheads & letterheads from early Tombstone, Arizona, and other Old West venues. It is our purpose to share as much of our collection as possible with those that are truly interested.

You will notice the items on display have dark lines through them or a red logo. This is from a clear Mylar transparency that we lay the document on before scanning it. We do this to stop unauthorized copying of the items.

Our goal is to promote and educate people on the magnificent history of the American West. Step back in history and enjoy these rare and scarce images from early Tombstone and southeast Arizona!

(1) The above document and the following four are from the town of Fairbank, A.T., located on the San Pedro River not far from Tombstone. They are billheads of businesses who, at one time, thrived there including J. Goldwater & Co., A.A. Castaneda & Co., and the New Mexico & Arizona Railroad Co. A ghost town now, Fairbank survived well into the 20th century. It was named after N.K. Fairbank, a shrewd Chicago investor who invested heavily in the Tombstone District. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

(2) J. Goldwater & Co. Fairbank, Arizona dated January 7, 1888. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

(3) Another J. Goldwater variation billhead from Fairbank, Arizona dated August 25, 1889. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

(4) J. Goldwater & Co., Fairbank, Arizona February 1886. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

(5) A New Mexico & Arizona Railroad Company memo/letterhead from the agent at Fairbank Station dated in March 1887. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

This letterhead, signed by Tombstone resident G.W. Lang, is from Noble (Nobles), Arizona. It features the instructions cattleman G.W. Lang was given in delivering cattle to J.T. Fitzgerald. This was a very important piece of paper at the time, attesting to Mr. Lang's job and good intentions. It will be remembered George W. Lang's son Billy Lang was killed along with Old Man Clanton and others in the ambush at Guadalupe Canyon in August of 1881. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

This billhead is from the Cochise Hardware & Trading Association, dated November 9, 1884. This business specialized in mining equipment, tools, and prospector gear as indicated by the items on this very scarce Tombstone, A.T. invoice. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

This well preserved document from early Tombstone leaves no doubt that the office of Cochise County Sheriff/Tax Collector was indeed a lucrative and rewarding position. The document, signed by J.H. Behan, indicates his ten percent ($112.32) for collecting taxes due. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

Photographed is a rare 1879 handwritten Order to Arrest/Warrant by Charleston, A.T. Justice of the Peace J.C. Burnett. The "colorful" J.C. Burnett, sometimes considered himself above the law according to his antics in many books related to Tombstone and Charleston, A.T. Charleston and Tombstone, at the time, were in Pima County, A.T. Cochise County would not exist until early 1881. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

An interesting letter here from Fred Dodge to John P. Clum. Both men were there in Tombstone during the early days of the mining camp. The letter reveals the mortality of both men and mentions Wyatt Earp also. Many have said Fred Dodge embellished his activities in Tombstone and was boisterous in his old age too. This typed and signed letter may or may not attest to that, depending on one's point of view. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

Legendary lawman, U.S. Marshal R.H. Paul wrote and signed this letter of inquiry from his office in Tucson, A.T. in 1891. This is an interesting document in that it shows the everyday duties and responsiblities of the position of U.S. Marshal. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

As with the billhead below this one from 1884, it was presented to the well known AZ territorial ranchers Bayless & Buckalew. The L.W. Blinn Lumber Co. was an established business in the west and had branches in many mining areas of Arizona and New Mexico. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

This billhead dates to 1885 and is from the Pioneer Livery, Feed & Sale Stable. The business was located next to the Occidental Hotel on Allen Street. It was, no doubt, a convenience for the traveler to have a stable so close to the hotel. One wonders, however, what the hotels guests thought of the aromas emanating from the stable. The Occidental Hotel was built in 1883 after the fire of 1882 destroyed the Grand and Cosmopolitan Hotels. The Occidental burned to the ground in 1889. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

This extremely rare letter hand written on Hotel Santa Rita stationary is from the real town of Calabasas/Calabazas, A.T. The town's name is spelled two different ways depending on what you are reading. John Cabell Brown's original 1892 book, about the town and its inhabitants, spelled it Calabazas. This letter is believed to have been written circa 1883 and is a companion to the business card located on the Business Cards & Paper Tokens page of this website. Some say Calabasas never existed. We say it most definitely did exist and survived near the Santa Cruz River south of Tucson and north of the Mexican border in what is now Santa Cruz County, Arizona. The town was developed in anticipation of the railroad that never materialized! © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

A remarkable document from early Charleston, A.T. dated March 1, 1879. This is a petition requesting the appointment of James C. Burnett to serve as Justice of the Peace. One of the signatures on the petition is that of Amos W. Stowe. He was the surveyor who laid out and plotted the town of Charleston! © Kevin Mulkins, 2012.

The legendary Spangenberg & Co. Pioneer Gun and Locksmiths presented this bill for services rendered to the local I.O.O.F in Tombstone on August 30, 1881.

This document records a very common and necessary requirement before employment in early Tombstone. It was verification for a potential employer that the man wanting employment was in good physical condition and free from disease. © Kevin Mulkins, 2012

On March 14, 1882 the Grand Hotel, under the management of Archie McBride, apparently ordered or was billed for a new pool table from Jacob Strale & Co. located in San Francisco. Archie McBride, at the time, was desperately ill and would become incapacitated and pass away within six months. ©Kevin Mulkins, 2012

Pictured is a rare 1880 Tombstone Social Club Thanksgiving Party card, probably meant to be folded in half. This elite social gathering was held on Thursday evening, November 25th, at the recently opened magnificent Grand Hotel on Allen St. What a site it must have been! The list of various committee members is impressive with many notable Tombstone citizens. The reverse of the card has the twenty-two dances listed. They range from a Waltze, Quandrille or the Schottische to a Polka. I have only seen one of these dance cards from the Tombstone Social Club with an Earp as one of the committee members. Virgil Earp was listed as Sergeant-at-Arms. Generally, the Earps were not invited to this type of social gathering in Tombstone. ©Kevin Mulkins, 2012

Contact us with any questions at: kevbevmulkins@msn.com or call us at 520-603-9325.

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