Skip to main content

Ghost Town Tuesday; Santa Claus, AZ (Santa literally for sale)

I figured that I would start this series off with something festively Christmas themed given it is December; the ruins of Santa Claus, AZ.

 
Circa 2011-2012 I often found myself traveling to Clark County Nevada for work and would often utilize US Route 93 to do so.  About 14 miles south of Kingman I often noticed a weird accumulation of festively themed buildings on the south side of US 93.  After looking into a map of Mohave County, Arizona on Ghosttowns.com I learned what I was looking was once an inhabited place called Santa Claus.


With the completion of the Hoover Dam in 1936 travel directly between Kingman and Las Vegas had become possible first with US 466 followed by US 93 likely in 1938.  Santa Claus traces it's roots back to 1937 when Santa Claus was opened by Nina Talbot.  The original vision for Santa Claus was a resort-like community surroundings the Christmas shop which was to act as a centerpiece so to speak.  Santa Claus essentially was a company town which was populated by workers of the Christmas shop.  Apparently the size of Santa Claus (more likely the notable name) actually warranted post office service.

After decades of decline the Santa Claus Christmas shop shut down and the site largely has been for sale ever since off the side of US 93.  Apparently there was still roughly 10 people living in Santa Claus as of 2000 but they were all apparently gone by 2006.  My understanding is that postal service continued to 2005.  Back in 2012 the Christmas shop was still standing off the western side of US 93, it is still standing on the 2016 Google Car Image.  I found the town sufficiently weird and kind of creepy to warrant my attention on the way back from Las Vegas on the way home from a work trip.








Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The original alignment of California State Route 1 in San Francisco

In 2019 the Gribblenation Blog Series covered the history of the Hyde Street Pier and the original surface alignment of US Route 101 in San Francisco.  Given the Golden Gate Bridge opened to traffic in May of 1937 coupled with the fact that the Sign State Routes had been announced in August of 1934 there were still some open questions regarding the original highway alignments in San Francisco.  Namely the question of this blog is; where was California State Route 1 prior to the completion of the Golden Gate Bridge?  Thanks the to the discovery of a 1936 Shell Highway Map of San Francisco and the California Highways & Public Works the answer can be conveyed clearly.     Part 1; the history of early California State Route 1 in San Francisco The genesis point for California State Route 1 ("CA 1") in San Francisco dates to 1933.  1933 was significant due to the State Legislature allowing the Division of Highways to assume maintenance of highways in Cities for the first time. 

Santa Clara County Route G8 and the New Almaden Quicksilver Mine

Santa Clara County Route G8 is a 29.38 mile County Sign Route which is part of the San Francisco Bay Area transportation corridor.  Santa Clara County Route G8 begins at California State Route 152 near the outskirts of Gilroy and terminates at former US Route 101 at 1st Street/Monterey Road near downtown San Jose.  Santa Clara County Route G8 incorporates the notable Almaden Expressway and is historically tied to the New Almaden Quicksilver Mine.   (Santa Clara County Route G8 map image courtesy CAhighways.org) Part 1; the history of Santa Clara County Route G8, the Almaden Road corridor and New Almaden Mine The present corridor of Santa Clara County Route G8 ("G8") began to take shape with the emergence of the Almaden Expressway.  According to the October 1960 California Highways & Public Works Unit 1 of the Almaden Expressway opened in November of 1959 between Alma Avenue near downtown San Jose south to the Guadalupe River as part of a Federal Highway Aid Secondary pro

California State Route 1 the Shoreline Highway Part 3; a drive through Mendocino County

This blog is Part 3 of a three part series on of the Shoreline Highway segment of California State Route 1 and features a drive through Mendocino County.  Part 2 found below features a drive through Marin County.  California State Route 1 the Shoreline Highway Part 2; a drive through Sonoma County Chapter 4; California State Route 1/Shoreline Highway through Mendocino County Upon crossing the Gualala River and entering Mendocino County CA 1 northbound traverses into Gualala at Postmile MEN 1.2. The land which the community of Gualala now sits was part of a 1844 Mexican Land Grant to General Rafael Garcia between the Gualala River and Mal Paso Creek.  After the Mexican-American War the State of California invalidated Garcia's Land Grant which was made it available to homesteaders.  In 1861 Cyrus Robinson filed a claim under the provisions of the 1820 Land Act on land upon which the community of Gualala now sits.  Soon a saloon, hotel and ferry would develop which formed the basis of