Bisbee (Arizona)

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Bisbee old town
Bisbee old town
Bisbee in Cochise County
Cochise County Incorporated and Unincorporated areas Bisbee highlighted.svg
Basic data
Foundation : 1880
State : United States
State : Arizona
County : Cochise County
Coordinates : 31 ° 25 ′  N , 109 ° 54 ′  W Coordinates: 31 ° 25 ′  N , 109 ° 54 ′  W
Time zone : Mountain Standard Time ( UTC − 7 )
Residents : 5,575 (as of 2010)
Population density : 446 inhabitants per km 2
Area : 12.5 km 2  (approx. 5 mi 2 )
Height : 1688 m
Postal code : 85603
Area code : +1 520
FIPS : 04-06260
GNIS ID : 0001436
Website :
Mayor : Adriana Zavala Badal
Bisbee; Postcard from 1910; Looking east

Bisbee , formerly known as "Queen of the Copper - deposits ," is a city (City) and the county seat of Cochise County in the US state of Arizona . Bisbee has almost 5500 inhabitants (as of 2010) on an area of ​​12.5 km². The population density is 446 inhabitants per km². Bisbee is near the border with Sonora , Mexico .

History of the mining town of Bisbee

Bisbee was founded in 1880 after rich copper, gold and silver deposits were discovered there. The city was named in honor of the judge DeWitt Bisbee, the financier of the first copper mine in Bisbee. Because of the mining in the Mule Mountains , the population increased sharply. In 1902 Bisbee received the administrative status city and by 1910 Bisbee had developed into the largest urban area in the county with up to 10,000 inhabitants. With the newly established suburbs like Warren, Lowell, and San Jose all located near a mine, Bisbee reached a population of nearly 25,000. In 1929 the seat of Cochise County was moved from Tombstone to Bisbee.

Due to the high copper demand during World War I , the Phelps Dodge Corporation opened the first open- cast copper mine . In November 1917 there were riots and strikes due to the exploitation of the (mostly Mexican) workers and their discrimination. 85% of all mine workers (more than 3000) went on strike for better working and living conditions. Phelps Dodge Corporation, which operated three mines in town and owned the only hospital, department store and newspaper, portrayed the riots as anti-American and let more than 1,000 striking miners at gunpoint out of town in cattle cars deported to Hermanas, New Mexico to curb union influence. Although President Woodrow Wilson made the deportation illegal, few individuals returned as they were threatened with lynching in Bisbee . The incidents came to be known as the Bisbee Deportation in the United States .

Between 1910 and 1975, however, the population fell continuously to around 6,200, as the ore deposits gradually became exhausted. Between 1974 and 1975 the last mines still open were closed. The largest and most important mine, the Queen Mine , was converted as a visitor mine, making the city a well-known and attractive tourist area to this day. From the opening in February 1976 to 2010, over a million visitors came.

During the almost a century of mining, a total of around 8 billion pounds of copper (~ 4 million t), 102 million ounces of silver (~ 3,172 t) and 2.8 million ounces of gold (~ 87.08 t ) promoted. Added to this were several million pounds of zinc , lead, and manganese .

The time after the mine was closed

After the mining companies withdrew, real estate prices plummeted and many California hippies took this opportunity to buy land in Bisbee. Together with the so-called baby boomers , Bisbee succeeded in stabilizing the population and developing in the direction of culture and modernity. In May 2000, Bisbee was voted one of the "Craziest" cities in America. In 2007 Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold bought Phelps Dodge Mining and began to investigate the soil, since mining in Bisbee may be profitable again due to the increased raw material prices. A mining operation has not yet come about.

In the spring of 2013, the congregation caused a national sensation with two extraordinary measures for America:

1. Plastic bags were banned and 2. the city allowed homosexual couples to live together through a civil union with the legal consequences of getting married. The Conservative Attorney General of the state of Arizona wanted to prevent this, but was unsuccessful.

Mineral finds

Cuprite from Bisbee
The Lavender Pit opencast copper mine in Bisbee

With around 500 proven minerals and their varieties , Bisbee is one of the most mineral-rich areas in the world. In addition to solid copper , gold and silver , the copper minerals azurite , chalcosine , cuprite , malachite and tenorite , the rare gold minerals calaverite , krennerite and sylvanite , the silver minerals acanthite , chlorargyrite , jalpait and xanthocone as well as various other ore minerals such as lead - or lead-molybdenum minerals galena and wulfenite , the iron minerals hematite , pyrite and siderite as well as the lead-vanadium mineral vanadinite are found.

For the minerals Chalkoalumit , Graemit , Henryit , Kiddcreekit , Paramelaconit and Shattuckit Bisbee applies also as a type locality .


Bisbee is at the junction of Arizona State Route 80 and Arizona State Route 92 . The official border crossing to Mexico is about 20 km south of the city center in Naco. The municipal regional airport is also located in the south of the city.

sons and daughters of the town

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Mineral Atlas - Bisbee
  3. Leslie Marcy: The Eleven Hundred Exiled Copper Miners. International Socialist Review, vol. 18, no. 3 (September 1917), pp. 160-162.
  4. History of Bisbee ( Memento of the original from May 2, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  5. International Real Estate Digest ( Memento of the original from June 7, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. ,, accessed March 12, 2010. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  6. Bloomberg News , accessed March 12, 2010.
  7. Süddeutsche Zeitung No. 79 of April 4, 2013, p. 10.
  8. Mindat - Description of the location and mineral list from Bisbee, Warren District, Mule Mts, Cochise Co., Arizona, USA

Web links

Commons : Bisbee, Arizona  - Collection of pictures, videos, and audio files