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Tucson Area Museums

Tucson Area Museums

AHM No Banners2Arizona History Museum 
949 E. 2nd Street, Tucson, AZ 85719
(520) 628-5774
Email: AHSTucson@azhs.gov

The Arizona History Museum’s focus is southern Arizona history from Spanish colonial through territorial eras. Exhibit topics include mining and transportation. The Arizona’s Treasures exhibit features Geronimo’s rifle, Wyatt Earp’s pistol, 18th-century Spanish silver artifacts, and hands-on exhibits for children.

To see some of the features at the Arizona History Museum watch this video: click here

Hours and Admission Prices

Museum Hours:
Monday – Thursday 9:00 am – 4:00 pm
Friday 9:00 am – 8:00 pm (Admission is 2-for-1 from 4:00 pm – 8:00 pm)
Saturday 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
Holidays OPEN: Martin Luther King Jr Day, Presidents’ Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day
Holidays CLOSED: New Year’s Day, Easter, Veteran’s Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas

* The 1870’s Tucson exhibit will be closed September 15th through 25th. 

Museum Admission:
Adults $10

Ages 65+ $8
Adult student $5
Ages 7-17 $4
Ages 6 and younger are free with family
AHS Members and Veterans are free
Blue Star Museum active duty military free (Memorial Day through Labor Day)

Free validated parking is available at the Main Gate Garage, located on 2nd Street and Euclid. Bring your ticket into the museum for validation.

Library and Archives Hours:
Tuesday – Friday 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
There is no admission fee for the Research Library.

Upcoming Events

First Fridays BannerAHM First Fridays – On the first Friday of every month, there will be a free program included with admission to the museum. Admission is 2-for-1 from 4-8pm.
Upcoming events:

  • October 6, 6:00 p.m. – Dogged Pursuit: Tracking the Life of Enrique Garfias, the First City Marshal of Phoenix Arizona book discussion
    Learn about Enrique Garfias’s triumphs over bigotry and bias and the important role of the Hispanic community in American history.

Programs are included with admission to the museum, which is 2-for-1 from 4-8 p.m. Free validated parking available in the Main Gate garage, enter on 2nd Street. For more information about this event, call (520) 628-5774 or email ahstucson@azhs.gov
For information about the Sonoran Wreath Festival, visit: www.azhs.gov/sonoranwreathfestival

The Arizona History Museum and the Fort Lowell Museum are proud to participate in the 2017 Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day Live event coming up on Saturday, September 23rd! In partnership with the Smithsonian magazine, museums around the country are offering free admission to provide visitors with a free museum experience.

The Arizona History Museum will be open 11-4pm. The Fort Lowell Museum (2900 N. Craycroft Road) will be open from 10-4pm.

Receive free admission to the museums by downloading free Museum Day Live! tickets online at www.smithsonian.com/museumday

For a full list of events at the Arizona Historical Society, visit our web calendar: www.arizonahistoricalsociety.org/events

Current Exhibits

* The 1870’s Tucson exhibit will be closed September 15th through 25th. 

HistoryLabLogo_whitebackground-med

History Lab is a new type of museum exhibit that the community to tell their histories in a fun, steampunk style.

The exhibit features the following exhibits and community curators:
“Tucson’s Early Brewers” by Betty Cook
“Tucson’s Black History” by Zee and Bernard Wilson
“Agua Caliente Park” by the Agua Caliente Elementary School 4th grade class
“Mine Workers of Bisbee”; “The Tohono O’odham and Pima Indian Experience in 19th Century Arizona Territory”; “Freemasons, African American Women WAACs and Chicanos”; and “Apache Indian History in the Southwest” by the University of Arizona Department of History Capstone Research class

Also, create your own exhibit in our History Lab DIY activity!
The exhibit will be on display through the end of the year at the Arizona History Museum.

AHS Arizona History Museum 4The Arizona History Museum offers a wide variety of exhibits, ranging from 1870’s Tucson to today. Some of our favorite exhibits are:

 

Museum Gift Shop

store_22We invite you to shop in our wonderful museum store where you will find fine Navajo and Zuni jewelry, reproductions of vintage photographs, maps, and greeting cards from our museum’s collections, children’s toys and books, blown glass artworks, and much more!

The Arizona Mercantile is located near the museum entrance to the right. All sales benefit Arizona Historical Society programs. AHS members receive a 10% discount on all merchandise.

Store Hours:
Monday – Saturday 11:00 am – 4:00 pm

Phone: (520)617-1167

Facility Rentals

The Arizona History Museum offers many unique spaces to host your next event, party, or wedding.

Pioneer Courtyard – Outdoor courtyard with replica 1800’s patios and a small stream. Perfect for cocktails or small parties up to 80 guests.
Lobby – Passing through the historic San Agustin Cathedral Portico, your guests will enter the 1,500 square foot lobby. The lobby features original tiles from 1954 and can hold cocktail receptions up to 100 guests.
Auditorium – This expansive space is perfect for parties and receptions up to 185 for a seated dinner or 300 for a standing reception. Audio/visual equipment includes: projector and screen, 2 microphones, surround sound speakers and Wi-Fi.
Treasures Gallery – Guests are surrounded by priceless artifacts from Arizona History, including Wyatt Earp’s rifle and a Territorial wedding dress. This space can accommodate 90 guests for a seated dinner or 150 for a cocktail reception.
History Lab – A small classroom seconds away from our countless artifacts, the Discovery Room is perfect for small presentations, meetings or birthday parties. This room accommodates 40 seated guests or 50 standing guests.
Conference Room – The conference room offers the perfect site for your next meeting or presentation. This room is complete with a projector, screen, whiteboard, Wi-Fi and video conferencing equipment. The board room can seat up to 40.

If you’re interested in renting a space at the Arizona History Museum, please contact Nicola Brownlee, Facility Rental Coordinator at (520) 617-1141 or nbrownlee@azhs.gov

See the attached packet for more information on the facilities and pricing:
Arizona History Museum Rental Brochure 


Tours

Guided Tours
Th
e Arizona History Museum offers scheduled guided tours on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.  A free walk-in public tour is available on the first and third Saturday of every month at 11:30am.

Scheduled tours on Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday:
Scheduled guided tours are scheduled for either 10am or 11am for 45 minutes. If your group is over 30 people, we will use both hours. The guided tour will cover a majority of the museum’s exhibits, covering content from Territorial Arizona to modern times. A trained tour guide will take your group through the exhibits.

  • For school guided tours we prefer a ratio of 1 chaperone to 5 students. Admission for students is $4 each, teachers and chaperones are free.
  • For adult guided tours, we offer a $1 discount off regular admission for groups of 10 or more. Regular admission pricing is $8 for adults (18-64), $6 for seniors (65+).

Please schedule your guided tour 3 weeks in advance. To schedule, see instructions below.

Walk-in tours on Saturdays:
On the first and third Saturday of every month, a free guided tour is offered for the first 10 people who sign up. Tours begin at 11:30 and will last 45 minutes. The guided tours are free with admission to the museum. 

Self-guided tours:
If you are interested in taking a group of 10 or more to the museum but do not want a guide, we offer discounts for self-guided tours. The museum supplies a gallery guide to explain each room and ample exhibit labels and context for the exhibits.

For self-guided groups, we offer a discount off regular admission for groups of 10 or more. Regular admission pricing is $8 for adults (18-64), $6 for seniors (65+), $5 for student adults (18+), $4 for student youth (7-17).

If you’re interested in scheduling a tour, please fill out the online form:
 School Groups –  Guided/Self-Guided Tour 
 Other Groups (Non-school groups) – Guided/Self Guided Tour

PDF versions of the registration form are also available for download:  2017-2018 Field Trip Registration Form or 2017-18 Adult Tour Registration. Please fill out the form and email it to Mary Ann Ruelas at maruelas@azhs.gov

If you have any questions, please call Mary Ann Ruelas at (520)617-1154 or email maruelas@azhs.gov

Teacher Resources

We have provided a variety of materials for your personal/classroom, and educational purposes only.  The Arizona Historical Society (AHS) and its staff, provides these materials with the understanding that AHS may or may not own the copyright to the shared materials. They are not intended for public distribution.  This includes any commercial reproduction, redistribution, publication, or other use by electronic means (website, social media, etc.) or otherwise is prohibited unless written permission by the copyright holder.

To see the Esperanza Means Hope resources center, visit: http://www.arizonahistoricalsociety.org/education/esperanza/

Research Library and Archives

Arizona Historical Society Research Library and Archives is located within the Arizona History Museum. The library is free to the public and houses thousands of historic documents, photos, newspapers, and more. No appointments are necessary to use the library, but appointments can be made so the librarians can pull your requested documents in advance.

Library Hours:
Tuesday – Friday, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

If you have a question or would like to schedule an appointment, please call (520) 617-1157 or email AHSref@azhs.gov
For more information on the Tucson Library and Archives, please visit: http://www.arizonahistoricalsociety.org/tucson-archives/

Museum Accessibility

The Arizona History Museum is committed to providing a comfortable environment for all visitors to enjoy the facilities.

Public Transportation
The Arizona History Museum is nearby to the Sun Link streetcar stops on University Blvd. at the Main Gate Square. For more information, please check http://www.sunlinkstreetcar.com/.
There are many Sun Tran stops nearby to the museum, please check http://www.suntran.com/  for more information.

Passenger Unload/Load Zone
There is a 15 minute loading zone at the entrance of the museum on 2nd Street. Visitors arriving by vehicle can use this area to use the passenger unload zone, which is by a ramp that leads up to the doors of the museum. Parking is not permitted in this area. Please park in the Main Gate Garage.

Parking
There are metered handicapped parking spaces available in front of the museum on 2nd street.
Validated parking is available at the Main Gate Garage, located on Euclid Avenue and 2nd Street. For validated parking, enter the garage from 2nd street and head straight into the section labeled “Arizona History Museum visitors”. You will receive a ticket to enter the parking garage, which you will exchange for an exit pass once you visit the museum.

Wheelchairs
A wheelchair is available free of charge in a first come, first serve basis. Please ask at the lobby front desk. The museum offers accessible entrances, galleries, elevators, and bathrooms for wheelchair use.

Service Animals
We welcome visitors with trained service animals to the museum.
 

Staff Directory

Front Desk (520) 628-5774
Research Library and Archives (520) 617-1157
Gift Shop (520) 617-1167
School Tours (520) 617-1143
Donations (Archival -2D) (520) 617-1157
Donations (Artifacts – 3D) (520) 617-1179
Membership (520) 617-1165
       
Arriola, Julia Curator, Downtown Museum (520) 770-1473 jarriola@azhs.gov
Brownlee, Nicola Museum Store & Rental Facility Coordinator (520) 617-1141 nbrownlee@azhs.gov
Crowe, Doreen Registrar (520) 617-1175 dcrowe@azhs.gov
Gonzales, Eric Operations Manager (520) 617-1142 egonzales@azhs.gov
Jones, Laraine Daly Museum Collections Manager (520) 617-1179 ldjones@azhs.gov
Marley, Elyssa Curatorial Aide, Fort Lowell Museum (520) 885-3832 emarley@azhs.gov
Mueller-Martin, Peter Building Maintenance Specialist (520) 617-1153 pmueller-martin@azhs.gov
Roe, Leslie Southern Division Director (520) 617-1185 lroe@azhs.gov
Ruelas, Mary Ann Educator (520) 617-1154 maruelas@azhs.gov
Whittemore, Marica Southern Admininistrative Assistant (520) 617-1143 mwhittemore@azhs.gov

 


Reviews/Media Links

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Check out this video from the Southern Arizona Attractions Alliance about their visit to our museum!

Visitor Reviews:
“This visit was planned to “kill time” while our husbands were riding in the El Tour de Tucson. It turned into a 3 hour trip back in time and the many unknown people, places and events that make up the great state of Arizona. Surprises seemed to wait around every corner and interesting artifacts from American Indian culture, mining culture, building of the canals, the migration of the Chinese to Arizona(who knew?!) and so much more.

On our visit, we were the only people in the museum. Take your time and read the history of the area. It was just fascinating to learn about the early settlers of the area and how they made their living and how they lived. For the $8.00 entrance fee, it was well worth our time and would be suitable for people of all ages. We found lots of restaurants around and great places to just people watch. Great for an afternoon.” – Visited November 2016

“This museum gives a great overview of the history of AZ and also gives a bit of local history. The current special feature concerning Poncho Villa was very interesting and we learned quite a bit about him that we did not know. Give this at least a couple of hours to do it justice. Make sure to get your parking ticket stamped by the front desk and the garage parking is free.” – Visited July 2016

AHS_Downtown_front_2014Downtown History Museum
140 N. Stone Avenue

in the Wells Fargo Bank building
Tucson, AZ
Phone: (520) 770-1473

The AHS Downtown Museum exhibits depict early Tucson businesses and homes and the development of Downtown Tucson, including drugstores, police and fire departments, and the Romero barbershop.

Hours and Admission Prices

Museum Hours:
Wednesdays and Thursdays, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm; Fridays, 10:00 am to 3:00 pm

The museum will be open Saturday, September 23rd from 10:00am-4:00pm. 

Museum Admission:
Free admission, donations welcome.

Free validated parking available in the Wells Fargo garage on Alamedia Street. Bring your parking ticket into the museum to be validated.

Upcoming Events

The Downtown History Museum is proud to participate in the 2017 Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day Live event coming up on Saturday, September 23rd! In partnership with the Smithsonian magazine, museums around the country are offering free admission to provide visitors with a free museum experience.

The Downtown History Museum will be open 10-4pm. 

Receive free admission to the museums by downloading free Museum Day Live! tickets online at: www.smithsonian.com/museumday

For a full list of events at the Arizona Historical Society, visit our web calendar: www.arizonahistoricalsociety.org/events

Current Exhibits

The Downtown History Museum continues the tradition of celebrating Dia de los Muertos with Carrillo K-5 Magnet School.  Monarch butterflies and angel shrines (nichos) created by the 4th and 5th grade students will be on display in the museum gallery.

The exhibit will be on display October 20th through November 15th, 2017. Admission is free to the museum, with free validated parking in the Wells Fargo Garage on Alameda.

DWNThe Downtown History Museum tells the story of the heart of Tucson before urban renewal. Travel through Tucson’s beginning as a Spanish Fort and mission, to its boom as the place to be for movies, shopping, and dining. You may even have a run in with Public Enemy #1, John Dillinger!  Put your own mark on history with our interactive exhibit “I Am Tucson.”

John Dillinger Online Exhibit

Museum Gift Shop

ProductsDon’t forget to visit the gift store where you can find rare books, prints of historic downtown Tucson, Dillinger items, children’s toys, jewelry and much more. 

AHS Members receive a 10% discount on most merchandise.

Store Hours:
Wednesday – Friday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm

Tours

Guided tours:
The Downtown History Museum offers guided tours during regular hours on Wednesday through Friday. The guided tour will cover a majority of the museum’s exhibits, with information about the development of Tucson and its people. Admission for guided tours is $3/person.

Self-guided tours:
If you are interested in taking a group of 10 or more to the museum but do not want a guide, we offer self-guided tours. The museum supplies a gallery guide to explain each room and ample exhibit labels and context for the exhibits. 

If you’re interested in scheduling a tour, contact Julia Arriola at (520)770-1473.

Accessibility

The Downtown History Museum is committed to providing a comfortable environment for all visitors to enjoy the facilities.

Public Transportation
The Downtown History Museum is nearby to the Sun Link streetcar stop on Stone. For more information, please check http://www.sunlinkstreetcar.com/.

There are Sun Tran bus stops nearby the museum, please check http://www.suntran.com/  for more information.

Parking
There are metered parking spaces available in front of the museum on Alameda Street.

Validated parking is available at the Wells Fargo Garage, located on Alameda Street. You will receive a ticket to enter the parking garage, which will be validated once you visit the museum.

Service Animals
We welcome visitors with trained service animals to the museum.

Reviews/Media Links

Visitor reviews:
“A great day trip. Loaded with historical treasures. A must see for those who want to learn more about the local history.”

“I am an Arizona native and never realized that this little gem was right there in the middle of downtown Tucson. The day I visited I met the curator on duty, Jim Bleess and the rest is history, he’s a hoot! Knowlegeable about his museum and all things interesting. Between his knowledge of Tucson’s History and the displays anyone who lives here and has not visited is missing an adventure. There is a stunning picture taken in the 1800’s from A-mountain of the city as you enter. You’ll find a tribute to our very own gangster “Dillinger”, keepsakes from hotels gone by and fireman’s uniforms through the ages.”

Visited April 2013

Ft.-Lowell-2

Fort Lowell Museum
2900 N. Craycroft Road

Tucson, AZ
Phone: (520) 885-3832

Fort Lowell Museum tells the historic story of Fort Lowell during the Apache Wars. Housed in a accurate replica of the Commanding Officers quarters, circa 1885. The building hold permanent and changing exhibits featuring military artifacts.

 

Hours and Admission Prices

Museum Hours:
Thursday – Saturday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm.

Museum Admission:
Free admission, donations welcome.

Free parking available in the Fort Lowell Park parking lot. 

Upcoming Events

Soap Making BannerDiscover the history of soap as you make your own. Oatmeal, Coffee, Lemon-Verbena, Lavender, Honey Bee plus kids confetti or hidden prize soap. Fun for all ages! $4/person. This event happens every 2nd Saturday of the month, so don’t miss out. Soap making at Fort Lowell is available only during May-October.
Call the Fort Lowell Museum for more information: (520)885-3832

candles-8588eThe history of dipped candle making dates back to as early as 500 BC. Have you ever wondered how they did it? Learn how and make your own beeswax dipped candles in this fun, volunteer led activity. Fun for all ages! $4/person.

This event happens every 2nd Saturday of the month, so don’t miss out. Candle dipping at Fort Lowell is available only during October-May.*
* Craft is subject to weather, may be substituted with Soap Making. 

Call the Fort Lowell Museum for more information: (520)885-3832 

The Arizona History Museum and the Fort Lowell Museum are proud to participate in the 2017 Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day Live event coming up on Saturday, September 23rd! In partnership with the Smithsonian magazine, museums around the country are offering free admission to provide visitors with a free museum experience.

The Arizona History Museum will be open 11-4pm. The Fort Lowell Museum (2900 N. Craycroft Road) will be open from 10-4pm.

Receive free admission to the museums by downloading free Museum Day Live! tickets online at smithsonian.com/museumday

For a full list of events at the Arizona Historical Society, visit our web calendar: www.arizonahistoricalsociety.org/events

Current Exhibits

Fort Lowell Museum has a wide variety of artifacts and exhibits on display.

  • Campaigning in the Field– Enlisted men from Fort Lowell worked on the telegraph lines and used the heliograph.
  • Scalpels and Satchels– Fort Lowell was equipped with a first rate hospital and supplied excellent care from one of the most famous residents Walter Reed.
  • The Army and the Iron Horse– Once a Cavalry post and headquarters of the 6thCavalry where court martials were held. The military post was also in close proximity to the train depot.
  • Supplying the Troops– Fort Lowell served in many ways during the Apache Wars including working as a supply depot.
  • Scouts– Apache Scouts served with the Cavalry.
  • Social Life & Entertainment– Many dinner parties and dances entertain the enlisted Officers.
  • A Bite to EatFeeding the Soldiers– Bacon, Beans and Coffee. Discover how food sustained the enlisted in the Arizona desert.
  • Images of Resistance– Apache quotes and pictures of a time of hardship.

 

Museum Gift Shop

Products

Make sure not to miss the gift store where you can find books, maps, children’s toys, desert jelly and honey, candle holders to show off your hand dipped candles (see Upcoming events for times) and much more.

AHS members receive a 10% discount on all merchandise.

Store Hours:
Thursday – Saturday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm

 

Tours

 

The Fort Lowell Museum offers guided tours during regular hours on Thursday through Saturday. The guided tour will cover a majority of the museum’s exhibits, with information about the development of Tucson and its people. Admission for guided tours is $3/person. If you are interested in participating in an activity during your visit, you can arrange a tour and activity for $4/person. Activities include beeswax candle dipping and custom soap making.

Self-guided tours:
If you are interested in taking a group of 10 or more to the museum but do not want a guide, we offer self-guided tours. The museum supplies a gallery guide to explain each room and ample exhibit labels and context for the exhibits.

If you’re interested in scheduling a tour, contact Elyssa Marley at emarley@azhs.gov.

 

Accessibility

Public Transportation
The Fort Lowell Museum is nearby to the Sun Tran bus stops. Please check http://www.suntran.com/  for more information.

Passenger Unload/Load Zone
There is a loading zone near the entrance of the museum. Visitors arriving by vehicle can use this area to use the passenger unload zone, located on the South side of the museum.

Parking
Visitors can park in any of the Fort Lowell Park parking spaces in the lot East of the museum.

Wheelchairs
The museum offers accessible entrances, galleries, elevators, and bathrooms for wheelchair use.

Service Animals
We welcome visitors with trained service animals to the museum. 

 


Reviews/Media Links

Visitor reviews:

“Our Museum guide was George, a very personable, friendly and knowledgeable gentleman. George was virtually a “walking encyclopedia” full of wonderful and fascinating information about the history of the Fort and those who served there. This was a completely new experience for us, as George went into great depth about the soldiers, their lifestyle, hardships. I, myself, have been a part of the military family/community for more than 47 years, while my friend was a veteran. We could identify with the military customs and life. Of all the museums we have visited, this was by far the best and most thorough tour we’ve experienced. George stand head and shoulders above the other tour guides we’ve met. He is a great credit to his profession.”
  
Visited August 2016

Free historic museum, well done. Free admission, but donations accepted. After you visit, you will want to donate. Hands on, for children. Surprisingly, they encourage you to touch things not behind glass. Offer candle making and other activities. Outside area too and adjacent to a park. Packed a lunch, or not, as located in neighborhood so food nearby.

Visited February 2017

sosa-carillo-fremontSosa-Carrillo-Frémont House
151 S. Granada Avenue
Tucson, AZ
520-882-8607

The Sosa-Carrillo-Frémont House is a historic adobe house from the 1870s that is an excellent example of Sonoran and Territorial architecture and has strong ties to some of Tucson’s earliest and most prominent pioneers.

[wptabtitle]Hours and Admission Prices[/wptabtitle]

Museum Hours:
Monday through Friday, 10am – 5pm.  

Museum Admission:
Free admission, donations welcome.

Currently Managed by Borderlands Theater
Visit www.borderlandstheater.org

Free parking available in the parking lot off of Granada Ave. Inform parking attendant you are visiting the museum.

Upcoming Events

For a full list of events at the Arizona Historical Society, visit our web calendar: www.arizonahistoricalsociety.org/events

Current Exhibits

20160630_142533-120160630_14312920160630_142822-1Built in the neighborhood formerly known as Barrio Libre, the Sosa-Carrillo-Frémont House was saved from Tucson’s urban renewal project and transformed into a branch museum of the Arizona Historical Society. This Sonoran row house contains an outstanding representation of a zaguán, a central hall leading from the front door to the rear courtyard. A Black Mission fig tree, planted over a hundred years ago, is central to the rear courtyard.

 

Accessibility

The Sosa-Carrillo-Frémont House is committed to providing a comfortable environment for all visitors to enjoy the facilities.

Public Transportation
The Sosa-Carrillo-Frémont House is nearby to the Sun Link streetcar stop on Granada. For more information, please check http://www.sunlinkstreetcar.com/.
There are Sun Tran bus stops nearby the museum, please check http://www.suntran.com/  for more information.

Parking
There are handicapped parking spaces available in the parking lot off of Granada Ave. Free parking is available in this lot, inform the parking attendant you are visiting the museum.

Service Animals
We welcome visitors with trained service animals to the museum.

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Reviews/Media Links

Visitor reviews:

“In the shadow of the Tucson Convention center is this beautiful gem of history tucked away and wonderfully preserved. It’s a small home but has a very interesting history and the significance of being the only House Museum of it’s kind in Tucson. You don’t expect it to be there since it’s surrounded by modern buildings, but I am very glad that it was saved and in use as a cultural landmark. Curator Julia gave me a very interesting synopsis of the home’s history and knows the place inside and out since (I think) she’s been a huge part of it’s preservation and use since the 90s. The house is a great taste of life during that period in the Arizona desert. Tour was a half hour or so. Take the time to check it out!”

Visited September 2015