The pre-history of Kingman Arizona belongs
to the Anasazi, the "Ancient Ones," and their Native American
descendants, principally the Haulapai, Havasupai and Mohave tribes.
Today Kingman Arizona is a thriving community but first a brief
overview of Kingman Arizona History
Before being subdued by the settling of the West,
these nomadic tribes roamed the area from northern Arizona's Verde
Valley to the southern border of the Grand Canyon and Colorado River as
far south as Quartzite. Their artistry typified nomad culture:
distinctive basketry, woven blankets and pottery for food and water.
Visitors may hike, camp, hunt, fish or raft on nearby Haulapai lands by
obtaining permits from the tribal headquarters in Peach Springs.
Spaniards searching for gold explored the area as
early as the 1500's and were followed by Anglo explorers in the early
In 1857, Lt. Edward Fitzgerald Beale and his team of
explorers came to survey a wagon route along the 35th parallel to the
Pacific Ocean. His survey party used camels for transportation, a
novelty that never caught on. Nonetheless, the Beale Road, which stretch
from Ft. Defiance, New Mexico to the Colorado River, became a popular
path for prospectors seeking fortunes of gold, silver, copper and
turquoise. Route 66
In the early 1880's, Lewis Kingman surveyed a
railroad route between Albuquerque, New Mexico and Needles, California,
which for much of its length paralleled Beale's road.
The fledgling settlement along the track's route was
designated "Kingman Ariozna" after the enterprising surveyor in
1882. Framed businesses popped up everywhere and, in 1887, Kingman
Arizona was declared county seat of Mohave County, spurring the
construction of a courthouse and county jail.
After World War II, the need for the Kingman
Arizona Army Air Base ended and the town turned increasingly to the
tourist market. Historic Route 66 paralleled the railroad route, leading
millions westward to California throughout the early 20th Century. The
travelers brought prosperity to Kingman Arizona as a trade and
transportation center and Route 66 became an essential part of Kingman's
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