Latitude / Longitude:
31°20′06″N 110°37′29″W / 31.33500°N 110.62472°W / 31.33500
4,685 ft (1,428 m)
Mountain (NO DST) (UTC-7)
Lochiel is a populated place and former border crossing in southern Santa Cruz County, Arizona, approximately 25 miles east of Nogales. The townsite is located in the southwestern part of the San Rafael Valley on Washington Gulch about 1.5 miles west of the Santa Cruz River. It was first settled in the late-1870s and mostly abandoned by 1986. The town served the ranches of the San Rafael Valley and the Washington Camp and Duquesne mining towns of the Patagonia Mountains about five miles to the northwest up Washington Gulch.
The Lochiel area was originally inhabited by a small community of Mexican ranchers before a smelting works was erected in the late 1870s to serve the nearby mines in the Patagonia Mountains, bringing in American settlers. By 1881, a town by the name of Luttrell had formed and was home to some 400 people, most of whom worked in the smelter or in the mines, as well as five stores, three saloons, a brewery, a butcher shop, a bakery, livery stables, and a boarding house operated by a one Dr. Luttrell, for whom the town was originally named
A few people still live in Lochiel to this day. In addition to a collection of old houses, Lochiel is the site of an adobe one-room schoolhouse, a teacherage, an old adobe church, and an abandoned U.S. Customs station.
Lochiel is also the site where Fray Marcos de Niza first entered what is now Arizona. A large memorial just to the west of town was erected in his honor in 1939 by the National Youth Administration.