Visiting Jerome Historic State Park: A Comprehensive Guide

Visiting Jerome Historic State Park: A Comprehensive Guide for RVers

If you’re planning a trip to Arizona, make sure to add Jerome State Historic Park to your itinerary. Located in the charming town of Jerome, this park offers a glimpse into the state’s mining history and the life of James S. Douglas, a prominent mining magnate. The park’s main attraction is the Douglas Mansion, which was built in 1916 and now serves as a museum.

Inside the mansion, you’ll find exhibits that showcase the history of the town and the mining industry. You’ll also learn about James S. Douglas and his contributions to the mining industry. The mansion itself is an impressive structure, with its Spanish Colonial Revival architecture and stunning views of the Verde Valley. Outside the mansion, you can take a stroll through the park’s gardens and enjoy the scenic beauty of the area.

Before you visit Jerome State Historic Park, it’s important to know that the park is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. The park is open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM on Wednesdays through Sundays. Admission to the park is $7 per person, and children under 14 get in for free. Guided tours of the Douglas Mansion are available for an additional fee. With its rich history and beautiful setting, Jerome State Historic Park is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in Arizona’s past.

Overview of Jerome Historic State Park

If you’re planning a trip to Arizona, a visit to Jerome State Historic Park is a must. Located in the northeast of the Black Hills, this state park is home to the historic Douglas Mansion, which was built in 1916 by James Douglas, a mining entrepreneur. The park is a popular destination for history buffs, families, and anyone who wants to learn more about the history of Arizona.

Jerome State Historic Park is operated by the Arizona State Parks system and is open to the public year-round. The park offers a variety of activities, including guided tours of the mansion, hiking trails, and picnic areas. Visitors can also explore the museum, which features exhibits about the history of the park and the surrounding area.

One of the highlights of the park is the guided tour of the Douglas Mansion. The mansion was once the home of James Douglas, and it has been restored to its original condition. During the tour, you’ll learn about the history of the mansion and the people who lived there. You’ll also get a glimpse into the life of a mining entrepreneur in the early 20th century.

If you’re interested in hiking, the park offers several trails that range in difficulty from easy to moderate. The trails offer stunning views of the Verde Valley and the surrounding mountains. The park also has picnic areas where you can enjoy a meal with your family or friends.

Historical Significance

Jerome State Historic Park is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in Arizona’s rich history. The park is located in the former mining town of Jerome, which was once known as “The Wickedest Town in the West” due to its wild and lawless nature during its heyday. Today, the park is dedicated to preserving the history of the town and the surrounding area.

Jerome was founded in the late 19th century as a copper mining town, and it quickly became one of the most productive mines in the state. The town’s success was due in large part to the efforts of James S. Douglas, who built the Little Daisy Mine and the Douglas Mansion, which is now part of the park. Douglas was one of the most successful copper mine owners in the state, and his family played a significant role in the development of Arizona’s mining industry.

The park’s centerpiece is the Douglas Mansion, which was built in 1916 and served as the family home until 1931. Today, the mansion is a museum dedicated to the history of the Jerome area and the Douglas family. Visitors can explore the mansion’s many rooms and learn about the family’s life and legacy.

In addition to the mansion, the park also features a collection of mining equipment and artifacts, including a stamp mill and a hoist house. Visitors can learn about the underground mines that once operated in the area and see firsthand the tools and equipment that were used to extract copper from the earth.

Exploring the Museum

When visiting Jerome State Historic Park, exploring the museum is a must. Once the stately mansion of mining magnate James Douglas, the museum is now home to a collection of artifacts, minerals, and displays that tell the story of the Jerome area and the Douglas family.

As you walk through the museum, you’ll see exhibits that include photographs, a 3-D model, and personal possessions of the Douglas family. You’ll also learn about the history of mining in the area and the role that Jerome played in the development of the American West.

One of the highlights of the museum is the mine museum, where you can see a drill and other equipment used in mining operations. You can also watch demonstrations of mining techniques and learn about the geode rock and silver town that once dominated the area.

In addition to the exhibits, the museum also features a gift shop where you can purchase jewelry and other items related to the history of the area. If you’re an engineer or just interested in the history of technology, you’ll find plenty to interest you in the museum’s displays and exhibits.

Overall, the museum at Jerome State Historic Park is a fascinating and informative destination for anyone interested in the history of the American West. Whether you’re a history buff or just looking for an enjoyable way to spend an afternoon, the museum is definitely worth a visit.

Touring the Park

When you visit Jerome State Historic Park, there are a few things you should know before you start your tour. The park is located on Cleopatra Hill, which provides stunning views of the surrounding area. You can see Mingus Mountain to the north and the Mogollan Rim to the south. The park is open from 10 AM to 4 PM every day except Christmas and Thanksgiving Day.

When you arrive at the park, you can start your tour at the Douglas Mansion. The mansion was built in 1916 by James S. Douglas, and it is now a museum that houses exhibits about the history of the town and the mining industry. You can take a self-guided tour of the mansion, or you can join a guided tour led by a park ranger. The guided tour is recommended if you want to learn more about the mansion’s history and the people who lived there.

After touring the mansion, you can explore the park’s other attractions. One of the most popular attractions is the Audrey Shaft Headframe, which is a remnant of the Little Daisy Mine. The headframe is visible from the mansion’s balcony, but you can also get a closer look by hiking down to it. The park ranger can provide you with a map of the hiking trails.

If you don’t want to hike, you can take a shuttle to the headframe. The shuttle is available from April to October, and it runs every 30 minutes. The shuttle is included in the park admission fee.

The park also offers geology programs, which are led by a park ranger. The programs cover the park’s geology, including the formation of Cleopatra Hill and the Little Daisy Mine. The programs are available from April to October, and they are included in the park admission fee.

Finally, the park is known for its haunted history. If you’re interested in the paranormal, you can join a ghost tour led by a park ranger. The ghost tour takes you through the mansion and the park, and it includes stories about the town’s haunted past. The ghost tour is available from April to October, and it is not included in the park admission fee.

Visitor Information

When planning a visit to Jerome State Historic Park, there are several things you should know to make the most of your trip. Here’s what you need to know:

Hours and Entrance Fee

The park is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., except for Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. Admission to the park is $7 per person for adults, $4 for youth (7-13 years old), and free for children under 7 years old. Arizona State Parks Annual Pass holders can enter for free.

Video Presentation

Before exploring the park, visitors are encouraged to watch a 15-minute video presentation that provides an overview of the history of Jerome and the Douglas Mansion. The video is available in the Visitor Center, which is open during park hours.

Picnic Area

If you’re planning to spend the day at the park, there is a picnic area available for visitors to use. The area is located near the parking lot and offers shaded tables and benches.

Shops and Galleries

Jerome State Historic Park has a gift shop located in the Visitor Center, where visitors can purchase souvenirs, books, and other items related to the park’s history. Additionally, there are several art galleries located in Jerome, which showcase the work of local artists.

Rainy Days and Hot Weather

If you’re visiting the park on a rainy day, be sure to wear appropriate footwear, as the grounds can become muddy and slippery. During hot weather, it’s important to stay hydrated and wear sunscreen, as there is limited shade on the park grounds.

Holiday Hours

Jerome State Historic Park is open on most holidays, but hours may vary. It’s recommended that you check the park’s website or call ahead to confirm hours of operation on holidays.

Nearby Attractions

If you have extra time, consider exploring some of the other attractions in the Jerome area. The park is located in the Verde Valley, which is known for its scenic beauty and outdoor recreation opportunities. Additionally, the nearby cities of Prescott and Cottonwood offer a variety of shops, restaurants, and cultural attractions.

Ghost Town

Jerome is a former mining town that has been designated a National Historic Landmark. Visitors can explore the town’s historic buildings and learn about its colorful past.

Nearby Attractions

While visiting Jerome State Historic Park, you may want to explore the surrounding area as well. Here are some nearby attractions that might interest you:

  • Sedona: This iconic town is located just 28 miles from Jerome. Known for its red rock formations and spiritual energy, Sedona is a popular destination for hiking, shopping, and dining.
  • Jerome Historical Society’s Mine Museum: If you’re a history buff or interested in mining history, you may want to check out this museum. The museum features family artifacts, geological treasures, and information about the mining boom in Jerome.
  • Fort Verde State Historic Park: Located 23 miles from Jerome, this park features a collection of adobe buildings that were once part of a military fort. Visitors can explore the buildings and learn about the lives of the soldiers who lived there.
  • Arizona State Parks: There are several state parks located near Jerome, including Dead Horse Ranch State Park, Verde River Greenway State Natural Area, Red Rock State Park, and Slide Rock State Park. Each park offers unique outdoor activities and scenic views.
  • Jerome Grand Hotel: This historic hotel was once a hospital and is rumored to be haunted by ghosts. Visitors can stay overnight or just stop by for a meal or a drink at the hotel’s restaurant and bar.
  • Touristy Shops and Eateries: Jerome is known for its quirky, touristy shops and restaurants. You can find everything from handmade crafts to vintage clothing to gourmet food. Take a stroll down Main Street and see what catches your eye.

Whether you’re a history buff, a nature lover, or just looking for a unique vacation rental, there’s something for everyone near Jerome State Historic Park.

Nearby RV Camping Options & Info

If you’re planning a visit to Jerome State Historic Park in your RV, there are a few nearby camping options to consider. Here are some details about the closest RV parks and campgrounds.

Jerome State Historic Park RV Camping

Jerome State Historic Park offers RV camping on-site, with 20 campsites available on a first-come, first-served basis. The campsites are located in a gravel lot near the historic mansion and offer electrical hookups, water, and a dump station. The maximum RV length allowed is 40 feet. Keep in mind that the campsites are basic and do not offer amenities like showers or restrooms.

Private RV Parks and Campgrounds

There are several private RV parks and campgrounds located within a short drive of Jerome State Historic Park. Here are a few options:

  • Verde Valley RV & Camping Resort: This resort is located in Cottonwood, about 15 minutes from Jerome State Historic Park. It offers full hookup RV sites, tent sites, and cabins, as well as amenities like a pool, hot tub, and mini-golf course.
  • Dead Horse Ranch State Park: This state park is located in Cottonwood, about 20 minutes from Jerome State Historic Park. It offers RV sites with electric and water hookups, as well as tent sites and cabins. The park also features hiking trails, fishing ponds, and a lagoon for kayaking and canoeing.
  • Distant Drums RV Resort: This resort is located in Camp Verde, about 25 minutes from Jerome State Historic Park. It offers full hookup RV sites, as well as amenities like a pool, hot tub, and fitness center.
  • Zane Grey RV Park: This park is located in Camp Verde, about 30 minutes from Jerome State Historic Park. It offers full hookup RV sites, as well as amenities like a pool, hot tub, and laundry facilities.

Before you book a campsite, be sure to check with the park or campground to confirm availability and any specific rules or regulations. And remember to always practice good camping etiquette by respecting your neighbors, following park rules, and leaving your campsite clean and tidy.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some must-see attractions in Jerome Historic State Park?

Jerome State Historic Park is home to the Douglas Mansion, which was built in 1916 by James S. Douglas. The mansion is now a museum that showcases the history of the Jerome area and the Douglas family. Visitors can also explore the park’s 2.43-acre grounds, which offer stunning views of the Verde Valley.

What is the history behind Jerome’s mining industry?

Jerome was once known as the “Wickedest Town in the West” due to its reputation as a rough and tumble mining town. The town’s mining industry began in the late 1800s and continued until the mid-1950s. Today, visitors can learn about the town’s mining history at the Douglas Mansion.

Are there any ghost tours available in Jerome?

Yes, there are several ghost tours available in Jerome. These tours take visitors to some of the town’s most haunted locations and share stories of the town’s ghostly past.

What is the admission fee for Jerome State Historic Park?

As of June 2023, the admission fee for Jerome State Historic Park is $7 for adults and $4 for children ages 7-13. Children under 7 are free.

What are some nearby attractions to visit while in Jerome?

While in Jerome, visitors can explore the town’s many art galleries, antique shops, and restaurants. The nearby Tuzigoot National Monument and Sedona’s Red Rock State Park are also popular destinations.

What is the best way to get to Jerome Historic State Park?

Jerome State Historic Park is located in the town of Jerome, Arizona. The park is approximately 100 miles north of Phoenix and 30 miles southwest of Flagstaff. Visitors can reach the park by car via State Route 89A. Parking is available on-site.

Concluding Thoughts

Visiting Jerome State Historic Park is a unique experience that offers a glimpse into Arizona’s mining history. Here are a few final thoughts to keep in mind before you plan your visit:

  • The park is open year-round, but hours vary depending on the season. Be sure to check the park’s website for current hours of operation.
  • Admission to the park is affordable, with fees ranging from $5 to $10 per person. Children under the age of 14 are free.
  • The park offers guided tours of the Douglas Mansion, which are highly recommended. The tours provide an in-depth look at the history of the mansion and the surrounding area.
  • The park is located in a mountainous area, so be prepared for steep inclines and stairs. Wear comfortable shoes and bring plenty of water.
  • The town of Jerome is also worth exploring. It has a rich history and plenty of shops, restaurants, and galleries to explore.

Visiting Jerome State Historic Park is a great way to learn about Arizona’s mining history and experience the beauty of the state’s mountainous terrain. Whether you’re a history buff or just looking for a unique day trip, the park is well worth a visit.

Charley Waters

I've traveled to 49 states and 3 provinces in Canada living in my RV full-time over many years. I've stayed just about everywhere possible. National parks, state parks, parking lots, BLM land, Independent RV parks and friends and family's driveways. I lived through a crazy Derecho windstorm in Iowa. I got stuck in a winter freeze in Texas.

Living on the road in your RV can be challenging at times. But the good times make up for the bad. I'm here to share my experience and help fellow RVers good decisions while enjoying the great outdoors and vast camping opportunities this country has to offer.

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