Tombstone Times Tombstone News, History and Information
      contact 
FROM TOURIST TO TEAMSTER
by Janice
Read what other travelers have to say about hotels in Tombstone Arizona

Dennis Carrol drives a Stagecoach in Tombstone Arizona    It was over 8 years ago when Dennis and Cyndi Carroll decided to "head west" from their Michigan home. Packing things up they looked at each other and wondered where in the west they would go. Cyndi decided upon Arizona and with Dennis in agreement they gathered their belongings, pulled out the map and began their adventure. They had no specific destination in mind and would figure that out when then got close to Arizona. A map showed them that Tombstone was near and they took the exit and headed on down to their intended destination.

   It happened to be a Sunday when they arrived and the streets were blocked off. Thinking that the town was closed and they would have to return on Monday to see what Tombstone was all about they headed back towards the interstate and took a room in Benson. This was before Allen Street had been permanently closed to vehicle traffic and on special occasions or Sundays the street would be blocked or roped off so people could get better pictures of our great western town. While bunking in Benson they were reading a newspaper that advertised for a driver position. Dennis was going to need employment if this was going to be their new home so he called up and scheduled an appointment for an interview for the position. The job would be in Tombstone and the driving would be a team of horses hooked to a wagon! Their adventure in Tombstone was to begin and it was February 22, 1999.

Dennis Carroll   By March 22, Dennis had learned the ropes and was put in charge of his own team to guide on the streets of Tombstone. His training included everything from taking care of the 5:30 am feedings to shoeing and training the new teams. Dennis had spent some time with quarter horses before but never with an animal the size of these Belgians and Percherons. He took his new position seriously and learned all he could about these animals and the care needed for them. He found that working with these grand animals became second nature. He grew to love the horses and the horses learned to respect and value their new guide.

   But the position did not just require horse sense; it necessitated the memorizing of Tombstone's story. So during this month of training it was also necessary for him to not only memorize and repeat the words scripted for the tour route but to become familiar with Tombstone's history. Day after day he read and re-read the script. He and Cyndi would drive the route and he would tell the story familiarizing himself with each historic location and creating a flow to the words he would share with his passengers. Soon, Dennis not only had it down pat, he was repeating it in his dreams and on more than one occasion still today, Cyndi has to wake him up and tell him that she already knows the story!

Dennis Carroll teaches a new Teamster   It seems hard to think of Dennis learning the ropes of this teamster role. For as long as I can remember he has been the face of Old Tombstone Historical Tours. He has been photographed more than any one person or building in Tombstone. His picture has been spotted in magazines all over the world and even in a German commercial... to say nothing of the zillions of personal cameras that have captured the stagecoaches and the white haired cowboy who drives them.

Christmas in Tombstone    This oft-photographed stagecoach driver though is more than just the image captured on film. When he takes his cowboy hat off and pulls his boots off for the day he has not just played the part, he has lived it. In the eight plus years that Dennis has been with the stage line he has trained and put 24 horses on the street. Even though we only see two horses at a time guiding the stagecoach or covered wagons there are about 15 horses out on the ranch where they all live. Each team is only worked 1 or 2 days a week, allowing them ample time to rest between each shift. On an average day horse and driver cover anywhere from 10 to 15 miles, event weekends easily 20 miles. And Dennis has been there with them from sunrise to sunset, feeding, brushing, cleaning, training and loving them.

   It's not the cold harsh winters of Michigan now for Dennis though there are some days that he can get quite a chill sitting atop the coach in December and January. And the summer's heat becomes tolerable for him after he douses himself with some cool water. But it is all in a day's work for him. A day's work since he headed west and went from tourist to teamster and the most photographed person in Tombstone.

Dennis and Cyndi Carrol
CLICK HERE TO VISIT
ALL OF OUR ADVERTISERS

Click for Tombstone Arizona Forecast

Frank and Tom McLaury NOW AVAILABLE!
Signed prints of Joyce Aros' watercolor painting of Frank & Tom McLaury
LINK WILL OPEN IN A POP UP WINDOW
Ike Clanton ALSO AVAILABLE!
Signed prints of Joyce Aros' watercolor painting of Ike Clanton
LINK WILL OPEN IN A POP UP WINDOW

Visit TombstoneWeb for Current Up-To-Date information about Tombstone Arizona.
www.TombstoneWeb.com

WANTED
Any Information on Tombstone's Past from the 1880's to 1990's including, but not limited to:

PHOTOS, DOCUMENTS, LETTERS, BROCHURES, STORIES, MEMORIES, POST CARDS, VACATION PHOTOS, BOOKLETS, ADS, PROGRAMS and other items.

If you have or know of someone who has any of these items, we would be very interested in hearing from you. Please contact us:

Goose Flats Graphics
P.O. Box 813
Tombstone, AZ 85638
(520) 457-3884

info@tombstonetimes.com









HOME | FEATURES | SUBSCRIBE | ADVERTISE | BACK ISSUES | ABOUT US | CONTACT | ADVERTISERS
ALL MATERIAL ON THIS WEBSITE INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, PHOTOGRAPHS, TEXT AND IMAGES ARE
COPYRIGHT ©2003 - 2007 GOOSE FLATS GRAPHICS - TOMBSTONE ARIZONA

Problems with this website? Email the webmaster at: