Today Jerome is a tourist destination, with many abandoned and refurbished buildings from its boom town days. The National Historic Landmark designation has assured architectural preservation in this town, a mile high on the side of Mingus Mountain.
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There are numerous bed and breakfasts in Jerome and two hotels, The Connor Hotel and The Grand Hotel. Restaurants range from hamburgers to fine dining. The two local bars, one of them Arizona’s oldest family owned bar, both regularly have live music on weekends.
Jerome is known as an art destination, with more than 30 galleries and working studios. First Saturday Art Walk began in 2006, and has become a popular monthly event. The Old Jerome High School is home to many artists and their open studios. Artists and craftspeople display their work in an open-air art park in nice weather.
The presence of silver and copper has been known in the area around what is now Jerome since the Spanish colonial era when Arizona was part of New Spain.
A mining town named Jerome was established on the side of Cleopatra Hill in 1883. It was named for Eugene Murray Jerome, a New York investor who owned the mineral rights and financed mining there. Jerome was incorporated as a town on March 8, 1899. The town housed the workers from the adjacent United Verde Mine, which was to produce over 1 billion dollars in copper, gold and silver over the next 70 years.
Jerome became a notorious “wild west” town, a hotbed of prostitution, gambling, and vice. On 5 February 1903, the New York Sun proclaimed Jerome to be “the wickedest town in the West”.