THE HISTORY OF THE REAL WHISKEY ROW IN PRESCOTT, ARIZONA U.S.A.
Located in the central highlands of Arizona the town of Prescott sits a mile high in elevation, and was established as the the capital of the Arizona territory in 1864.
In the center of town looms the old County Courthouse which is still in operation to this day. Across from the Courthouse, in the late 1800's, a row of saloons cropped up (forty of them) and took over an entire street. They coined it "Whiskey Row." The Great Fire of 1900 destroyed most of the wooden buildings, but most were quickly rebuilt by 1901.
New prospectors searching for gold and copper stayed in the hotels built around the Courthouse. Many of the hotels are still in operation but are said to be haunted by patrons of the past.
Citizen's prospered as merchants opened more and more shops, but it was not an easy life. The Wild West was a period ripe with lawlessness and disorder, wanted criminals on the run, gunfights...and plenty of whiskey-drinkin' gamblers.
Experience Prescott's historic Whiskey Row as you play the game—run from the law down Gurley Street, escape from the Courthouse jail, travel the haunted tunnels and duel to the death on Whiskey Row.
On the game board you will see many of the original historic saloons, hotels and merchants that are still in operation today. (Check out the list, links to their websites and information on their historic beginnings in the WHO'S ON THE GAME BOARD section.)
Pictured here are historic reenactors from the Fourth Cavalry and The Renegades on Whiskey Row in Prescott.
Prescott is named after William Prescott, the preeminent historian admired by the governor's party.
Named after John Gurley, who was elected Arizona's first territorial governor, but unfortunately died before he could take office.
Named after John Goodwin, the first Abraham Lincoln appointee to actually serve as governor.
Named after Hernando Cortés who brought down the Aztec dynasty and killed Montezuma II, the ninth Aztec emperor (hence the name Montezuma Street, which is referred to as Whiskey Row.)
"As a 1900 fire engulfed the saloons and brothels of Prescott (Arizona’s Whisky Row), patrons carried their bottles, glasses, and the monumental 24-foot-long bar out of the Palace Saloon and set it across the street in Courthouse Plaza...and kept on drinking. (The bar was saved and is now still used at the Palace Saloon.) That was not the first spirited event to take place in Courthouse Plaza’s history, nor was it the last. Prescott holds almost all community events—craft fairs, concerts, the annual Acker Night music festival, art exhibits, antique shows, and seasonal celebrations—at the Courthouse Plaza, just as it has since city planners mapped the square in 1864. The 4.1-acre square, with the 1916 granite courthouse at its center, anchors the town’s still-lively historic district of saloons, hotels, shops, cafes, and art galleries." (Excerpt from "Top Ten American Spaces," Travel and Leisure.)
"Prescott (pronounced 'Preskit' among locals,) is everybody's home town," as the slogan goes.
Just outside the town square, The Recreation Services Department manages natural areas that provide for a range of recreational activities to include hiking, running, mountain bicycling, horseback riding, nature study, birding, wildlife viewing, rock climbing, water-based recreation, and geocaching.
The Yavapai County Courthouse
There's much to see. So take your time, look around, and learn all there is to know about these historic saloons, hotels and merchant buildings around Whiskey Row that you see on the board.
We hope you enjoy their sites and patron their establishments.