Did You Know? Prescott has over 800 listings in the National Register of Historic Places
In 1863, the territory of Arizona was split off from the New Mexico territory. In 1864, Prescott was founded and named the Territorial Capital of Arizona. After some debate, the town was named “Prescott” in honor of William Hickling Prescott, the author of The History of the Conquest of Mexico. Although the Capital moved to Tucson in 1867, and then back to Prescott in 1877 before being permanently moved to Phoenix, Prescott remained a dominant political center of the Arizona Territory. Many historic buildings and landmarks from the period are still standing in Prescott and have been added to the National Register of Historic Places. Today, SunWest Dental is bringing you a glance at some of them.
Sometimes called the “jewel” of downtown Prescott, the Yavapai County Courthouse Plaza has served as a hub for campaign kick-offs, commemorations and celebrations. The tree-lined Courthouse Plaza is the pivot around which the town was originally built. A fire in the year 1900 destroyed eight blocks of downtown Prescott, including the adjacent Whiskey Row, causing $1.5 million in losses. Many buildings reconstructed and now, 11 buildings in the plaza are on the National Register, including the courthouse, itself, which is a Neo-Classic Revival Style building.
Governor’s Mansion/Sharlot Hall Museum
Built in 1864 and listed on the National Register in 1971, this log house was built for the governor’s home and office. It’s the oldest building associated with the original Arizona Territory that’s still standing in its original location. In 1927, Governor’s Mansion escaped demolition thanks to the founding of the museum by Sharlot Hall.
Sacred Heart Catholic Church and Rectory
Completed in 1894 and holding its first services on February 17, 1895, Sacred Heart church was built in a gothic revival style. By the time the 1960s arrived, the Catholic population of Prescott had grown so large that the old church did not have the capacity to hold them. Sacred Heart parishioners decided to build a new, larger church on the site of the then-razed St. Joseph’s Academy on Murphy’s Hill. The old church at 208 North Marina Street held its last religious services on June 13, 1969 and was sold to the Prescott Fine Arts Association. The church still serves as a theater and art gallery to this day.