(Home Page) | (Grand Canyon) | Flagstaff | (Phoenix) | (Payson) | (Arizona State Facts Page) | (Email Webmaster)
About Flagstaff, Arizona...
There are many stories surrounding the manner in which Flagstaff got its name. Perhaps the most commonly heard story refers to a lofty pine stripped of its branches and used to hang an American flag with rawhide strings for a Fourth of July celebration. The flagstaff became a symbol for the valley and could be spotted miles away. It was said that those journeying west were told to travel straight west, until you come to a flagstaff where you will find a good place to camp. In 1876 Thomas F. McMillan arrived and set up his home near a spring. He is recognized as being the town's first permanent settler. He built a cabin at the base of Mars Hill. Then in 1881, the first post office opened and the railroad barreled into town. Flagstaff began to grow. The town had timber, sheep and cattle and by 1886 Flagstaff was the biggest city on the main line between Albuquerque and the Pacific coast.
By 1891, Flagstaff had grown to 1,500 and Coconino County was established. The county soon became the second largest county seat in the United States. The famous Lowell Observatory was built in 1894. Dr. Percival Lowell chose Flagstaff for its great visibility. This proved to be correct when the planet Pluto was discovered at the observatory in 1930.
The Arizona Teachers College began in 1899, becoming Northern Arizona University in 1966.During the 1920's, Route 66 was built and passed right through town making Flagstaff a popular tourist stop. Flagstaff was incorporated as a city in 1928 with the help of Route 66 tourism dollars. With nearly 50,000 citizens, Flagstaff continues to grow today.
Northern Arizona University