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The History of superior arizona

The hub mine claim
of 1875

Superior began as a mining town with the Hub Mine claim in 1875 filed by W. Tuttle and the Irene Mine claim filed by P. Swain in 1876. These claims, together, became known as the Silver Queen Mine and by 1910 were owned by Colonel Boyce Thompson and renamed the Magma Copper Company. They had followed the opening, in 1875, of the famous, nearby, Silver King Mine founded by Mason, Long, Copeland and Regan that brought prospecting to the area.

The History of superior arizona

The magma smelter In 1914

Superior narrowly avoided becoming a ghost town when the Silver Queen and Silver King Mines were impacted by the change in the U.S. monetary standard in 1893 with the devaluation of silver from $1.50 to $.20 per ounce. This change from silver to gold killed many of the West’s silver mines. Fortunately, the miners looking for silver and gold also found copper, and with the founding of the Magma Copper Company, Superior continued to thrive. For 86 years, the Magma pulled copper and silver out of Superior’s mountains.

The History of superior arizona

The Boyce Thompson arboretum

Superior grew as more businesses evolved to serve the townspeople and ranching families. Nearby water from Queen Creek, water piped up from nearby Florence and a commerce base created by the ranchers and merchants that served the miners, kept Superior alive. This growth encouraged community involvement and activities that bonded people to Superior. Clubs and associations were formed, friendships forged, and more businesses built, including the Magma Hotel. Superior’s tourism boomed when Boyce Thompson, who was a self-made millionaire and mining magnate, established the Boyce Thompson Arboretum in 1923 to exhibit and study plants from all over the world.

The History of superior arizona

Main street & Magma Blvd

Superior is home to many resilient and self-reliant residents, many of whom are third generation descendants of the early settlers of the town. They are fiercely proud of their town, as are the newer arrivals. The artist community has brought the downtown area back to life, while revitalizing the historic buildings on Main Street and Magma Blvd with quaint new businesses. Hollywood has discovered this historic wild west town’s charm, as they have filmed a number of commercials and movies in the area including How The West Was Won, The Prophecy, U-Turn, The Fugitive and the PBS special Skin Walkers by Tony Hillerman.

The History of superior arizona

1982 The mine shut down

Some predicted that in 1982 when the town’s largest mine shut down it would mean the end of Superior and it, too, would become another Arizona ghost town. The following decade proved them wrong. The town had developed a much loved sustainable community in their beautiful high desert setting. The Magma Mine reopened in the 1990’s as the Resolution Copper Company. A copper dome was found 7,000 feet underground that is projected to be the largest copper vein in the United States, fourth-largest undeveloped copper deposit in the world, and is expected to revitalize Superior with employment and businesses.

The History of superior arizona

100+ year history & charm

Historic pictures of Superior show that the area has grown over its 100+ year history, but still retains its small town cultural and historic charm. Visitors who travel to Superior can see reminders of the glory days of mining and ranching in the town while enjoying the local shops, food, arts, and town activities such as Apache Leap Days and the Historic Home Tours that make Superior a great day trip and a walk back in time.

visit superior

learn more about the history of superior by visiting us today

To learn more about the history of Superior, visit the Bob Jones Museum or pick up a copy of the books When Silver was King by Jack San Felice and Superior and Queen Valley by Carol Schumacher and Danielle Tomerlin at local gift stores or from the authors through the QV Historical Society. To experience a mining themed Escape Room activity based on the history of the area, visit the Lost Dutchman Room at Escape Rooms Mesa owned by the Superior and Queen Valley book authors.

THE AMAZING BUSINESSES OF OUR COMMUNITY

SUPERIOR CHAMBER Businesses

Superior Optimist Club

The Superior Optimist Club is a charter club of Optimist International. We are a service group committed to serving the needs of children in our community.

Our club meets the third Tuesday of every month. Each year we financially support many youth based organzations and host 2 major events each year. We also partner with the Superior Substance Abuse Coalition to host two drug and alchohol prevention activities each year.
The mission of Optimist International is to promote Optimisim as way of life. Please enjoy our creed below:
The Optimist Creed
Promise Yourself ...
To be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.
To talk health, happiness and prosperity to every person you meet.
To make all your friends feel that there is something in them.
To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.
To think only of the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.
To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living creature you meet a smile.
To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others.
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

 

Superior, AZ

McSpadden Ford

We are proud to be your local Ford Lincoln dealer and meet your service, body shop, new car sales and used car sales needs! We have all of the latest Ford trucks, Ford cars, Ford SUVs, Crossovers and Hybrids, from the best-selling F-150 and Super Duty trucks to our full car line, including Fiesta, Focus, C-MAX, Fusion, Taurus, and everyone's favorite Mustang, plus an SUV/Crossover to fit every need, including the Escape, Edge, Flex, Transit Connect, Explorer and Expedition. Plus we have a wide selection of Hybrids, including the C-MAX Hybrid, Fusion Hybrid. Luxury customers will enjoy our personalized service when shopping the full line of Lincoln vehicles, including MKX, MKS, MKT, MKZ, Navigator and the new MKC. We also have many used and certified pre-owned vehicles to meet every budget. We also never charge a documentation fee! Customers appreciate working with the factory-trained, certified expert technicians in our friendly, fast and reliable full service garage for all of their maintenance and repair needs, including oil changes, tire rotations, new and replacement tire sales (we offer 13 major tire brands including Goodyear, Continental Tire and Michelin), brake service, batteries, tune ups, radiator, engine and electrical repairs and of course, any warranty work you may need. Our Body shop will work with your insurance company to make the process as easy as possible. On select Lincoln models, we also provide complimentary car washes, complimentary maintenance, pick-up services and loaner vehicles.

Globe, AZ

Future Forward Foundation

Future Forward Foundation – Serving Pinal County Since 2012

After Lina Austin's failed bid for Mayor of Florence in 2012, James A. Tchida, a retired Motorola Vice President, approached Austin. "I liked your courage and I liked your platform," he said. "Let's make these things happen another way." Together they created Future Forward Foundation (3F for short). Tchida became the founder and Austin the Executive Director. Today 3F has 5 people on the board of directors and 4 officers. All are actively supporting projects.

Getting right to work

Lina+on+Main+Street

3F wasted no time in getting to work for our community. While we waited for the 501 c 3 approval from the IRS, we got busy taking on projects. With just a shoestring budget, we painted 15 structures to beautify the town and planted 10 backyard vegetable gardens to help feed the hungry.

And since receiving the 501 c 3 IRS exemption on May 31, 2013, Future Forward Foundation has been hard at work seeking donor and grant funds to expand our programs. Here are a few more ways we're continuing to serve our community.

  • Early 2016 3F completed a half acre garden for a local Native American community. The local community requested half of the space be planted in the traditional "sunken bed" method as used by the community for thousands of years. To compare and contrast the other half used a Netafem drip system, a new experiment for the community.

  • 2015 saw 3F take over an unused city park in the city of Randolph, Arizona to help provide local citizens fresh produce.  Through a generous grant from TransCanada the park is now thriving with a large community garden with plans being made to incorporate space for local citizens to plant and grow their own vegetables.

  • In the fall of 2014, Future Forward Foundation planted 325 trees in the core of Florence to beautify the town. These "tall pot trees" will not require a water source after planting, making them affordable to low-income residents. The program was made possible through a grant from the Florence Community Copper Foundation.

  • In 2014, 3F expanded services to Superior. We'll be painting homes and planting backyard gardens.

  • We'll be partnering with Habitat for Humanity and other developers to make preparations to expand services with rural housing initiatives.

In addition, 3F began the first Florence Ministerial Association. Here, local pastors now communicate about the provision of services to those in need.

The 3F board has also set a goal to assist the other non-profits in the county through both direct financial help as well classes in grant writing. The board invites creative ideas from all sources. The Future Forward Foundation is still trying new solutions to help our neighbors, so watch for innovation.

Florence, AZ
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Superior, AZ 85173
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