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Somber start: Arizona’s Tombstone one of North America’s most depressing names

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PHOENIX — Figuring out the origin of any name can be a long journey, but it could be worth the time put in, as there is usually a meaningful reason how any name comes about. For a baby, it could be for a lost relative, or for another special reason. For a town, it could be a historic event that took place there.

Tombstone, Arizona, is no exception. No, it’s not where people go to take their last breath, but just based off the name, it might not top anyone’s bucket list locations.

According to Mental Floss, Tombstone has one of the most depressing names in North America.

Located in the southeast corner of Arizona, the town earned its name in the 1800s.

In the 1870s, soldiers told prospector Edward Schieffelin that the only thing he would find in this part of southeast Arizona was his own tombstone (plus some Indians). They were wrong—Schieffelin discovered rich veins of silver in the area, which became one of the frontier’s wealthiest and most lawless. (It was the later the site of the gunfight at the OK Corral.) Schieffelin named his first mining claim “The Tombstone.”

The Arizona town joined the ranks of some other dismal names, such as Point No Point in Washington, Dismal in North Carolina, and Murder Island in Nova Scotia.

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