Gleeson, Arizona

Coordinates: 31°44′2″N 109°49′47″W / 31.73389°N 109.82972°W / 31.73389; -109.82972
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Gleeson, Arizona
Remains of Gleeson
Remains of Gleeson
Gleeson, Arizona is located in Arizona
Gleeson, Arizona
Gleeson, Arizona
Location in the state of Arizona
Gleeson, Arizona is located in the United States
Gleeson, Arizona
Gleeson, Arizona
Gleeson, Arizona (the United States)
Coordinates: 31°44′2″N 109°49′47″W / 31.73389°N 109.82972°W / 31.73389; -109.82972[1]
CountryUnited States
Named forJohn Gleeson
Elevation4,924 ft (1,501 m)
Time zoneUTC-7 (MST (no DST))
Area code520
Turquoise Post OfficeOctober 22, 1890 – September 17, 1894
Gleeson Post OfficeOctober 15, 1900 – March 31, 1939
FIPS code04-26700
GNIS feature ID24427[1]

Gleeson is a ghost town situated in southeastern Cochise County, Arizona, United States.[3] It has an estimated elevation of 4,924 feet (1,501 m) above sea level.[1] The town was first settled as Turquoise[4] in the 1870s in what was then the Arizona Territory, then later re-established as Gleeson in 1900.[2]


The area was initially settled as a mining camp called Turquoise after the mineral which had been mined by Native Americans in the area.[4] The Turquoise post office was established on October 22, 1890, and lasted only a few years until September 17, 1894. When local miner John Gleeson registered a copper claim and opened the Copper Belle Mine, the town of Gleeson was created just downhill from the old site of Turquoise. Silver Bill, Pejon and Defiance were some of the other mines that followed in the surrounding areas.[5]

The Gleeson post office, established on October 15, 1900,[6] supported a town of about 500 people engaged primarily in copper mining, including veins of lead, silver and zinc.

In 1912, 28 buildings burned to the ground and the town was rebuilt.[4]

Copper production boomed to supply demand during World War I. The mines played out by the 1930s and eventually the Gleeson post office closed on March 31, 1939.[6]


Though several families still live on the site,[4] Gleeson is, by all measures, a ghost town, with the last commercial venture a rattlesnake products store that closed in 2014. Visitors can find the ruins of a hospital, a saloon, a cemetery, a jail, the foundation of the village school and evidence of the extensive mining in the surrounding hills near town.[4] The Gleeson cemetery is west of the town on the road to Tombstone.[7]

The Arizona Republic newspaper published an article on the town on January 12, 2014, stating that the jail has been renovated and now is a museum.[8]


Gleeson is located 16 miles (26 km) east of Tombstone[6] on the southern slopes of the Dragoon Mountains[5][9] It is located on the Ghost Town Trail near Courtland and Pearce.[4]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Gleeson
  2. ^ a b Sherman, James E.; Barbara H. Sherman (1969). Ghost Towns of Arizona. University of Oklahoma Press. ISBN 978-0806108438.
  3. ^ "Gleeson (in Cochise County, AZ) Populated Place Profile". AZ Hometown Locator. Retrieved November 21, 2016.
  4. ^ a b c d e f Marshall, John (October 19, 2014). "Ghost Towns". The Post Crescent. Associated Press. pp. F1, F2.
  5. ^ a b "Turquoise District (Courtland-Gleeson District), Dragoon Mts, Cochise Co., Arizona, USA". Retrieved August 21, 2009.
  6. ^ a b c Sherman, James E.; Barbara H. Sherman (1969). "Gleeson". Ghost Towns of Arizona (First ed.). University of Oklahoma Press. pp. 62–63. ISBN 0806108436.
  7. ^ Varney, Philip (1980). "Ten: Tombstone Territory". Arizona's Best Ghost Towns. Flagstaff: Northland Press. pp. 108–109. ISBN 0873582179. LCCN 79-91724.
  8. ^ Living in ghost towns – Gleeson, The Arizona Republic, Sat Jan 11, 2014
  9. ^ "The Ghost Town Trail – Gleeson, Courtland and Pearce". April 2007. Retrieved August 21, 2009.

External links[edit]