[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Inside
Weather
Santa Clarita CA
Cloudy
Cloudy
70°F
 
Calendar
Today in
S.C.V. History
August 13
1961 - First Mass celebrated at new Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church (3rd building) in Newhall. Cardinal McIntyre attends [story]
OLPH


Dear Newhall,

I thank you for your letter. Yes, we have real mail service down here in Southern Arizona. Haven’t had a problem sending or receiving mail since the last big snowstorm in January of 2019. Had around 5 inches of that infernal white stuff, and it was cold. There’s something strange about seeing a snow-covered agave plant.

I know it snows a little up your way like in 1962 when you had around 12 inches on your streets. I don’t get that much snow just about ever. I tend to blame it on our many far-northern visitors who come every winter. I can tell you they weren’t very happy in that last big storm of 2019. It may have been the one time our visitors from Canada didn’t actually say, “Thank you.”’

I sit about 1,675 feet higher in elevation than you, and if a body were to head exactly west from me, that would place the person a little south of Ensenada, Mexico, when they reach the Pacific Ocean.

Newhall, you and I do have some things in common, as you wrote in your letter. It seems you got all grown up while I have had a few problems growing at all. Why, at one time I had a population of only around 1,000 souls. I now hold around 1,400, and when the health crisis is over, folks will again come from all over to see me.

I want to thank you for having all those movies about me made where you are. The whole world knows about me, Tombstone, Arizona, but I had to ask someone where you are located. They kept telling me about a place called “Santa Clarita.” The maps I came across showed something with a similar name to be a river that runs to the sea. Come to find out it is a whole new city.

Should you ever come visit, I hope you can stay a few days. You see, there is just so much to do in Tombstone and the whole area around me. In fact, one pamphlet about me calls me, and I quote, “an Old West amusement park.” That is as good a description as any, I suppose.

I have a church that claims to be the oldest Protestant church in Arizona. Records show it began about 1885. Hear tell that you had a Presbyterian Church start up around 1891. So, we both appear to be mostly good, God-fearing towns. I hope you don’t hold it against me that Saint Paul’s Episcopal Church was built with the help of my local, shall I say, “soiled doves?” Yes, them ladies of the evening (and morning and afternoon) contributed nearly 50 percent of the money to put up the building that still sits on Third Street, just a block from all the action.

Tombstone Arizona

My streets are a bit bare right now, what with this sudden decline in tourism. But just you wait.

Action? I had plenty of that, what with the miners and gamblers and aforementioned ladies doing all manner of things, day and night. I’m still a little rowdy at times, but that is mostly for show. My fake gunfights and saloon girls are just for my visitors. Sort of like your yearly Cowboy Festival, ‘cept I do it every day of the year. I didn’t get the motto, “The Town Too Tough to Die” by singin’ in church and just diggin’ in the dirt for silver.

To tell the truth, after the Earps left town, things got real quiet. When the mines flooded and when they moved the Cochise County seat from me to that other mining town called Bisbee, I almost folded up and blew away. If it weren’t for that little 30-second-long gunfight at the OK Corral, I just might have become a ghost town like so many others. But along came the movies. Those silent films that showed just how the West was tamed.

A lot of those films back when – and even now – were filmed in or near you. Why, even today I can tip my hat to you, Newhall, for helping to save me, little ol’ Tombstone, Arizona. Don’t know how I can really thank you except for all y’all come to visit and see what your movies tried to show. You did well, very well.

After this virus passes and we both can return to normal, think about that visit, and I will do the same. As an amusement park, I lack roller coasters and such, but I do have a great stagecoach or two and some trolley cars to see the sights. Maybe all that isn’t as exciting as what you have, but I happen to think that a show at the old Wyatt Earp Oriental Saloon and a meal at Big Nose Kate’s place is a whole lot of fun.

You might see some of my folks dressed for the part as if the 1880s aren’t over. You’re welcome to join in on that. And should I come and visit next year when your Cowboy Festival returns, I’ll be wearing my Tombstone duds. It would only be right to share with my “Brother City” that way.

I hope this finds you well and prospering in these tough times. Please give all my best to you and yours,

Tombstone

 

Darryl Manzer grew up in the Pico Canyon oil town of Mentryville in the 1960s and attended Hart High School. After a career in the U.S. Navy he returned to live in the Santa Clarita Valley for a spell. Darryl has traveled far and finally landed near the town “too tough to die,” Tombstone, Arizona, calling it home for the past two years with the exception of summers, camp-hosting at Refugio State Beach near Goleta. His older commentaries are archived at DManzer.com; his newer commentaries can be accessed [here]. Watch his walking tour of Mentryville [here].

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

0 Comments

You can be the first one to leave a comment.

Leave a Comment


Opinion Section Policy
All opinions and ideas are welcome. Factually inaccurate, libelous, defamatory, profane or hateful statements are not. Your words must be your own. All commentary is subject to editing for legibility. There is no length limit, but the shorter, the better the odds of people reading it. "Local" SCV-related topics are preferred. Send commentary to: LETTERS (at) SCVNEWS.COM. Author's full name, community name, phone number and e-mail address are required. Phone numbers and e-mail addresses are not published except at author's request. Acknowledgment of submission does not guarantee publication.
Read More From...
RECENT COMMENTARY
Thursday, Aug 6, 2020
College of the Canyons is widely recognized as a leader in the innovative development of distance and online education, as well as zero cost textbooks for our students.
Tuesday, Aug 4, 2020
In his monthly message for August 2020, Santa Clarita City Manager Ken Striplin spotlights some of the things we CAN do under Safer at Home restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Monday, Aug 3, 2020
In his August message, Santa Clarita Mayor Cameron Smyth urges residents to prepare for and help prevent dangerous brushfires.
Friday, Jul 17, 2020
We must change our paradigm and the way we think. It’s not enough for us to avoid being racists. We must become warriors against racism and combat it wherever it rears its ugly head.
Saturday, Jul 11, 2020
Gray hair allows a triage doctor to withhold medical care at their discretion, should they feel your life expectancy might not be longer than 5 years. It’s called Crisis Standards of Care, and the physician is absolved of liability. Look it up.
Thursday, Jul 2, 2020
It seems like many things in our lives have been flipped upside down in the past few months. However, work continues, as planned, on the two major projects within our Santa Clarita 2020 Strategic Plan. Throughout the Safer at Home order, construction projects continued to progress.

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
1961 - First Mass celebrated at new Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church (3rd building) in Newhall. Cardinal McIntyre attends [story]
OLPH
Los Angeles County Public Health on Wednesday confirmed 58 new deaths and 2,428 new cases of COVID-19 countywide, with people younger than 50 years old accounting for 71% of the new cases.
Wednesday COVID-19 Roundup: Younger People Continue to Drive New Infections
A plume of smoke visible on what appears to be the north end of the Santa Clarita Valley Wednesday afternoon is the result of a fire in Lake Hughes.
‘Lake Fire’ Grows to 10K Acres in Lake Hughes
As most schools across California begin a new school year under distance learning, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond on Wednesday commended the around-the-clock dedication of educators, families, and students.
California Schools Chief Lauds Back-to-Learning Efforts
The contract for the body-worn camera program that will ensure greater accountability of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has been finalized, enabling the department to now order cameras and equipment at its discretion as of Wednesday.
L.A. County Finalizes Body-Worn Camera Contract
The Los Angeles County Department of Arts and Culture has awarded more than $4.8 million in arts grants for the 2020-21 fiscal year.
L.A. County Awards More than $4M in Arts Grants
The Santa Clarita Valley Senior Center reached another milestone this week when it surpassed 100,000 meals prepared and delivered in the SCV since March 13, as the COVID-19 pandemic began in the United States.
SCV Senior Center Serves More than 100K Meals Since March
The Music Center on Tuesday launched a new digital series called "For the Love of L.A.," designed to celebrate the creativity of Los Angeles and support L.A.-based artists representing the disciplines of music, dance, visual culture and more.
The Music Center Launches ‘For the Love of L.A.’
Los Angeles County Superior Court Presiding Judge Kevin C. Brazile executed a General Order Monday to extend court trial dates in Civil, Family, Probate, Juvenile and Criminal Divisions of the Court.
L.A. County Presiding Judge Again Extends Court Trial Dates
If you're voting in Los Angeles County this November, you'll soon have more options on how to cast your ballot.
Voting in L.A. County this November? Know Your Options
The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning for the Santa Clarita Valley and most of Southern California to be in effect from Friday morning through Monday evening.
Excessive Heat Warning Called for This Weekend in SCV, SoCal
The new 2020 Census deadline is approaching on September 30, and Los Angeles County officials remind residents that it's important that EVERYONE is counted, including all children who live with you.
Be Counted in U.S. Census by New September 30 Deadline
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department will review its policy and training for the use of assault rifles, following the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station's response to an assault report and felony stop Friday in Canyon Country, where three teenagers were detained at gunpoint, law enforcement officials said Tuesday.
SCV Incident Prompts Review of LASD Rifle Deployment Policy
Without downloading an app, millions of Californians and even tourists will automatically receive earthquake early warnings to their Android cellphones under a deal announced Tuesday by Google and the state.
Google Adding California Quake Early Warnings to Android Phones
1944 - Newhall Refinery on Sierra Highway destroyed by fire (then rebuilt) [watch film]
Newsreel
Los Angeles County reaches a somber milestone as deaths from COVID-19 surpass 5,000, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Tuesday.
L.A. County Reaches Grim Milestone: More than 5,000 COVID-19 Deaths
In a back-to-school day unlike any other before it, the first group of Santa Clarita Valley K-12 students and teachers returned to the classroom via a distance learning format Tuesday.
SCV Teachers, Students Return to Virtual Classrooms
SAN FRANCISCO - The Pac-12 CEO Group voted unanimously to postpone all sport competitions through the end of the 2020 calendar year.
Pac-12 Conference Postpones All Sports Through 2020
Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger has released a statement regarding a recent incident involving deputies from the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station - an incident, which was recorded by bystanders, and has since gone viral.
Barger Releases Statement Regarding Incident Involving SCV Deputies
(CN) — Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden selected California Senator Kamala Harris as his running mate Tuesday, upholding a debate promise to pick a woman to round out his ticket.
Biden Taps California Senator Kamala Harris as Running Mate
The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) announced the award of $38 million in Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Recovery Assistance grants to 14 Revolving Loan Funds (RLF) grantees, including the Los Angeles County Development Authority (LACDA).
L.A. County Secures $10.9M CARES Act Grant
Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station deputies rushed to a Canyon Country shopping center parking lot Tuesday after receiving a call from a man who said he had shot someone in a vehicle.
Deputies Respond to Possible Shooting in Canyon Country
Circle of Hope has announced their 16th annual signature Tea fundraiser, which will be held Saturday, Oct. 3, will feature something new and different with an internationally themed dinner and program.
Oct. 3: Circle of Hope Semi-Virtual Tea Fundraiser
Los Angeles County Chief Executive Officer Sachi A. Hamai, who agreed to temporarily postpone her retirement to help lead the County through the initial phase of the COVID-19 emergency, announced that she will retire at the end of August 2020.
L.A. County CEO Announces New Retirement Date
%d bloggers like this: