Bagdad is an unincorporated community on Bridle Creek in west-central Yavapai County, one of the four original counties. Created in 1864, the town is approximately 104 miles northwest of Phoenix at an elevation of 4,101 feet. Its history is closely tied to the copper ore responsible for its establishment. Nestled in the hills of the Aquarius Mountains, the town was named for the mining claim discovered by W.J. Pace and J.M. Murphy in 1882. A post office was established in 1910 with Henry Geisendorf as the first postmaster. From Phoenix, Bagdad is reached via U.S. 60-89 to Wickenburg, then U.S. 93 for 46 miles to state highway 97, the Bagdad turnoff. Follow State Highway 97 for 16 miles to State Highway 96 and turn north four miles to Bagdad.
Bagdad's major economic activities include mining and education. Cyprus Bagdad Copper Mine employs more than 600 people, while Bagdad School District has nearly 80 employees. The community has three small shopping centers including a grocery store, beauty shops, retail shops, professional offices, and several restaurants. The nearest large community is Prescott, seat of Yavapai County, 63miles east via state Highway 96.
The mountains and high plains of Yavapai County, named for the Indian tribe and often called “The Mother of Counties,” is the scene of much unique history. From the Indian ruins of Tuzigoot to the futuristic energy-efficient town of Arcosanti, lifestyles of the past and the future are close enough to examine in one day. Small towns in Yavapai County are modern examples of rural life surrounded by pristine mountains, lakes, and plains. Burro Creek, a perfect place for hiking, backpacking, and camping, was named by Army officers in 1869, probably for the population of burros in the area. Bagdad's primary scenic attraction is its copper mine, set amid extraordinary mountain scenery. Although this mine has been one of the state’s smaller open-pit operations, it is very impressive since the completion of an expansion project. The Santa Maria River, a few miles south of town, flows year-round. North of Bagdad is a scenic mountain drive into the Prescott National Forest, less than 20 miles away. This route skirts Blue Mountain, which at 5,500 feet is one of the highest peaks in the immediate area. State Highway 93, in northwest Mohave County, provides some desert-canyon, mountain landscapes. Ruins of modern-day ghost towns survive as remnants of the rich mining history in this area. Today cattle roam where prospectors once searched for fortune.