Located in the Superstition Mountains, Goldfield was a booming gold-mine town from 1892 to 1898, the time it took to strip the rich vein of all its ore.
Between Sedona and Prescott, the town boasted 15,000 residents in the late 1800s. But when mining went bust in the 1950s, all but a handful of people scattered. Today, about 450 people live in this vibrant artists colony.
The Cochise County town was twice reincarnated - from the remnants of its founding mining camp of Turquoise and from the ashes of a 1912 fire that destroyed most of the buildings. Townsfolk rebuilt, but the town was abandoned in the late 1930s, not long after the copper, zinc, silver and lead veins had dried up.
This storied Santa Cruz County town was on the verge of extinction almost from the time it sprung up in the late 1870s. A 1929 forest fire nearly destroyed the town, but it clung to life until the U.S. Forest Service swallowed up the land when it established the Coronado National Forest in the early 1950s.
This was the last of the great Santa Cruz County gold-rush settlements, and its ore was discovered by accident. The mine was active from 1894 to the 1930s, when the last of the residents fled.
- Selected by Cathalena E. Burch