This last weekend Brent and I took a quick road trip down to Cottonwood Arizona for a family funeral. We celebrated and commemorated the life of Brent’s sweet Grandma Jones. It was wonderful to be with family. Both sides of Brent’s family go back to Arizona’s Verde Valley, so there are always lots of incredible people to see. While in Cottonwood we drove up the hill to Jerome, one of the West’s most lively ghost towns, built on the side of Mingus Mountain.

Built on the hill looking out towards the red rocks of Sedona, Jerome is quite an incredible little location. It was established in 1876 as a copper mining town. Known as one of America’s “Most Vertical Cities,” the history of Jerome involves fires, miners, wealthy investor families, brothels, fires, landslides, saloons, and more fires. (They’ve seen a lot of fires.)

We got lunch at the Haunted Hamburger and then spent some time wandering the different street levels of the hillside city. The afternoon was warm and busy, with lots of tourists and live music. Jerome is also home to the oldest family-owned saloon in Arizona — owned by Brent’s great uncle and aunt. It is always fun to stop in and listen to Grandma and Grandpa Rowland reminisce.


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