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Miami, which has been important copper
mining centers for more than a century, are colorful communities
about four miles apart in east-central Arizona. Both are located
in a steep canyon, at 3,500 feet, in the Pinal Mountains of southern
Gila County. Globe is the county seat. U.S. 60 connects them.
Globe was founded as a mining town in 1876 because of
ample water and its attractive location for distribution of mining
products. The city was incorporated twice before its present incorporation
in 1907. Miami was founded by Black Jack Newman as a
camp near his copper mine. He named the camp, Mima, after his
fiancée, Mima Tune. The name was distorted, however, and the
town incorporated in 1918 as Miami.
More than 20 percent of the employment in Globe and Miami
is related to mining and production of copper. Over half of Gila
County’s sizable manufacturing sector employment is in copper
smelting, refining or rod production. In the area, there are three
copper mines, several concentrators, a smelter and a rod mill. All of
Gila County is a designated Enterprise Zone.
The local tourism industry has been enhanced by a $50 million
investment by the federal government to provide recreational campgrounds
and amenities at nearby Roosevelt Lake.
Meandering westerly from Globe-Miami is the famous Apache
Trail. This 98-mile trek on state Highway 88 provides more insight
into the character of Arizona than possibly any other section of road
in the state. Along the roadway, imposing saguaros, rugged mountains
jutting out of the desert, and four lakes created by dams on
the Salt River give the traveler a glimpse of Arizona’s beauty and
diversity. The newly designed “Old West Highway” continues eastward
to Lordsburg, New Mexico.
The Besh-ba-Gowah Indian Ruin is adjacent to the Globe
Community Center. The partially restored ruin and the adjacent
museum and visitor center provide a glimpse of the lifestyle of people
who occupied the region more than two centuries before
Columbus discovered the New World. A botanical garden is developed.
The downtown areas of Globe and Miami are rich in historic
buildings and a walking tour is available. In downtown Globe, the
historic Gila County Courthouse, built in 1906, is being restored and
houses the Cobre Valley Center for the Arts. The Boyce Thompson Southwest Arboretum with its collection of more than 10,000 desert cacti, flowers and trees are about 25 miles southwest of Miami. The Gila County Museum has a fine collection
of artifacts dating from 1125 to 1400 A.D. from the Salado
Fishing, hunting, white water rafting and sightseeing are popular
with residents and visitors. Roosevelt Lake, 25 miles from Globe via
state Highway 88, is one of the Southwest’s finest bass lakes. Tonto
National Monument is also nearby.