Latitude / Longitude:
31°38′9″N 110°10′21″W / 31.63583°N 110.17250°W / 31.63583
3,989 ft (1,216 m)
Mountain (NO DST) (UTC-7)
Charleston is a ghost town in Cochise County in the southeastern part of the U.S. state of Arizona. It was occupied from the late-1870s through the late-1880s, and was located in what was then known as the Arizona Territory. Located on the west bank of the San Pedro River, Charleston’s economy was based on milling silver ore mined from nearby Tombstone in the community of Millville, located directly across the river.
Charleston was originally settled as a residence for the mill workers in Millville, on the opposite bank of the San Pedro River, where two mills were built to process ore from the silver mines of nearby Tombstone.
After it was abandoned, Charleston was briefly inhabited in the 1890s by a small population of Mexican immigrants who furthered the town’s dismantling by using what was left of the wooden structures for kindling. Later, during World War II, the United States Army used Charleston as a practice site for urban combat, often using live ammunition.
The site was known to the soldiers of nearby Fort Huachuca as “Little Tunisia” due to its climatic and geographic similarity to Tunisia in Africa. These activities, in and around 1943, led to further deterioration of the site.