Historical dates leading up to Tucson's establishment
Photo by Estelle Buehman.
700 A.D. Hohokams
Excavations in the Tucson Downtown area have unearthed a Hohokam Indian pithouse dated at 700 A.D. They settled throughout the Arizona area eas early as 300 B.C. The Hohokam dug a 150 mile canal system along the Gila and Salt Rivers. The canals were used in th 1870's by the white settlers. The Hohokam abandoned their villages in the 15th Century for an unknown reason.
1500s Spanish Explorers
In 1540, Captain-General Francisco Coronado was dispatched to find "the seven cities of Cibola." Coronado marched through the area, about 25 miles from the Tanque Verde Guest Ranch.
1694 Father Kino
Father Eusebio Francisco Kino, a Jesuit priest, visited the Indian villages in 1694. He introduced livestock, fruits and grains from Europe. He established several misions throughout the southwest. Colonists build settlements around each mission. Read more about:
The repressive Spaniard priests and soldiers forced the Apache Indians living in the area to rebel. They killed all the Spaniards and plundered the outposts. The first Spanish post was established in 1752 in Tubac. Read more about Tucson's history in the 1700s.
1880s Mining Boom
The Santa Catalina Mountains became valued for its precious metals in the late 1800s through the mid 1940s. After the Gadsden Purchase, Americans began to flood the Southwest United States in search of gold, silver and copper. This period of mining brought thousands of people to live and work throughout the Catalina Mountains from Mt. Lemmon to Oracle. Such notables as W.F. "Buffalo Bill" Cody owned extensive mining claims in the back hills.
The Mine with the Iron Door is the legend of the lost Escalante mine that supposedly contains gold mined by the Pima Indians under the Jesuits occupancy. The Iron Door Mine was sealed up and its location is lost on history. But, the mine legend is still alive.
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