The Boot Hill Cemetery Ghost

The Boot Hill Cemetery Ghost

Ike Clanton was excited to find out that his good friend was coming to visit him in Tombstone, Arizona, for the first time…and he knew where the first ‘tourist’ stop would be!

This article covers the Boot Hill Cemetery ghost image that Clanton and his friend captured during the visit…


The Cemetery

The infamous Boot Hill Cemetery used to be known as Tombstone Cemetery. It gets it’s name from an old-term, meaning that many who lie there died with their boots on.

Simply put – the people that were buried there did not exactly die of natural causes!

The cemetery actually closed down in 1884 to make way for another cemetery to open nearby. Unfortunately, this meant that a majority of the graves ended up being neglected and markers started to go missing.

There are now a number of anonymous graves at the location.

boot hill cemetery tombstone


The Famous Boot Hill Cemetery Ghost Photo

The photo shows Ike Clanton’s visiting friend dressed up in typical cowboy stuff, and was snapped in 1996.

Clanton was a regular visitor to the cemetery and knew a lot about it’s history due to one of his ancestors, Billy Clanton, being laid to rest there.

Billy Clanton was buried along with Frank McLaury and Tom McLaury – all three were gunned down in the gunfight at the O.K. Corral.

Clanton’s mate wanted the photo to look as authentic as possible, so they set the camera up to take a black and white image. The film/photo was then developed at a nearby local Thrifty Drug Store.

When Clanton’s friend returned home he finally had a chance to look at his holiday snaps properly…one stood out in particular.

The Famous Boot Hill Cemetery Ghost Photo

The shocked friend phoned Clanton up to find out if he had been messing with him – surely this snap was a setup?

Clanton had no idea what his friend was on about, and was also shocked at what he saw in the photograph. In the image, he could clearly see an extra person crouching down behind his friend. Ike Clanton knew no one else was in that part of the cemetery when he had taken the picture; the extra figure was a complete mystery to him.

On closer inspection, the two friends realized that the ‘extra’ in the photo was far too low down to the ground, as if he had no legs, or as if he was standing in a hole (grave).

Clanton re-staged the same photo several weeks later in an attempt to find out what had happened in the original image. It didn’t work out – the other person’s legs could be clearly seen in the staged image.

They decided to magnify into the photo to get a look at the ‘visitor’ and hopefully find out more about him. On closer inspection they noted that the male figure seemed to be holding a long knife – the tip of which was pointing up towards the character’s throat.

original boot hill cemetery


The Paranormal Boot Hill Cemetery

Over the years there have been numerous paranormal reports linked to the Boot Hill Cemetery, but this image is by far the most famous. Nobody recognizes the man in the photo and nobody has any idea where he came from.

It’s worth noting that this is not the only paranormal photograph that has been snapped at the cemetery…

If you have any thoughts or opinions on Boot Hill Cemetery ghost, please leave them in the comment section below.

The Ghosts of Tombstone

The Ghosts of Tombstone

Tombstone is a town in Arizona from the old west. It was founded as a silver mining camp by a prospector named Ed Schieffelin.

This town was once one of the most dangerous places in the whole of the US as gunslingers and lawbreakers kept sending each other, as well as other innocent bystanders, to early graves at the Boot Hill Graveyard during its many fierce historical gunfights.

Residents of its heydays taunted that “Tombstone had a man for breakfast every morning!”

It is here that names such as the Earps, the Clantons and the McLaurys as well as Doc Holliday and the “Cowboy gang” gained national fame and went down in history as key players in the course of Tombstone’s history.

Ever heard of the Bisbee Massacre? Here we find another key name John W. Heath – an outlaw turned lawman then back to thievery again upon realizing that upholding the law didn’t pay half as much as breaking the law!

John’s death sentence was served by an angry mob that dragged him from a jail cell in Tombstone and hanged him on a telegraph pole in the street.

However, the truth is…these are not the only people who met their demise in this ghost laden town. In fact, some of the ghosts haunting Tombstone today belong to individuals who died in different ways like the guy who tried to play Romeo and Juliet but it all blew on his face… literally!

The story goes that the young man was a jealous lover who attempted to kill his lover by pumping her full of lead then turned the gun to himself and blew his own brains out.

The joke was on him because the lady survived the fatal gun wounds and never met him on the other side as he had planned (We wonder if he was able to say “Hello” from the other side?).

Some close to 40 souls also lost their lives in two separate infernos that razed two popular buildings housing saloons full of revelers to the ground.

Here are some of the locations from the old town of Tombstone where people have reported ghost sightings


The Bed & Breakfast at the Buford “Ghost” House

Remember our Romeo?

Well, his real name was George and the love sick spirit still remains within this building many years later.

Maybe he came back to check on his girlfriend or maybe he felt stupid after the botched murder/suicide attempt and decided to stick around for another chance to off his cheating girlfriend Petra.

George’s ghost is sometimes seen walking around the premises and some women have reported having their hair, butt and neck stroked by unseen hands.

Seems like George finally found out that there were many Petras in the world!

Others at the bed and breakfast have reported knocks on the walls, lights that appear strangely and faucets turning on/off on their own (or maybe its George washing his hands after touching all those sweaty women?!).


Boot Hill Graveyard

One thing for sure is that many people living in Tombstone during the 1800’s ended up here covered in dirt. This ranges from whores, prospectors, cowboys, gangsters and lawmen.

With close to 250 known graves, it goes without question that the Boot Hill Graveyard is one of the most haunted locations in Tombstone.

Boot Hill Graveyard

Many people have reported seeing strange lights and the infamous Billy Clanton’s ghost is often seen walking from the graveyard to the nearby Tombstone town (maybe to get closure on who shot him at the O.K Corral gunfight).


The Tombstone Streets

Another witness to too many a grisly murders from gunfights or otherwise has to be the streets in Tombstone.

Many people still report an unidentified woman dressed in white dashing across the street while others have seen the ghost of Virgil Earp staggering across the street maybe still trapped in the night of the failed assassination.


Party at the Devil’s Lair: Bird Cage Theatre

The Bird Cage Theatre is the most famous of all Tombstone’s haunted places. The building was once hell… literally! Anything a man of the flesh could ever wish for was here; whores, the drink, gambling and much more.

It comes as no surprise that there are close to 30 ghosts associated with this former Sodom & Gomora turned historic site.

The walls riddled with approximately 140 bullet holes are a clear testament to the evils that went on in there. The tourist attraction remained closed since the 1880’s until it was opened to the public 45 years later.

Ghosts of cowboys and especially one of a visor wearing man have been spotted here. People have also reported hearing noises coming from inside the building probably from patrons who missed last call by a century!

Bird Cage Theatre

One of the famous stories connected to our starring cast includes Wyatt Earp’s statue that was apparently losing its hat or switching positions every night.

It was later discovered that the statue was on the Clanton’s side of the building and once it was moved to the side that Wyatt actually frequented the mysterious happenings stopped.

Another story of a disappearing poker chip is also told of the Bird Cage Theatre. The Hunley family currently runs this establishment and people (including workers and visitors) have reported hearing strange card shuffling noises and glasses clinking as well as the distinct smell of cigar smoke.

The ghosts here are known to play practical jokes like moving heavy objects all over the place.


O.K. Corral

This is another one of Tombstone’s famous places and history has it that two Mc Laury brothers and a Clanton lost their lives here during a gunfight against the Earps (Morgan, Wyatt and Virgil) and Doc.

This is the birth place of the Wyatt Earp legend. Ghostly cowboys in a gunfight stance and drawn guns can still be seen at this location (currently Allen Street) doing a re-run of the gunfight from years ago.


More Haunted Places in Tombstone

There are more haunted locations in Tombstone and these include…

Café Magarita or Nellie Cashman’s Restaurant where the Russ House once stood. Schieffelin Hall built by Al Schieffelin – Ed’s brother Big Nose Kate’s Saloon where the Grand Hotel once stood – “Swamper” the ghostly janitor still lives at the basement.

Witnesses have reported seeing mannequins at the fake balcony make suicidal leaps  or silverware being thrown off the tables by unseen hands.

Red Buffalo Trading where the Campbell and Hatch Billiard Saloon once stood and also where Morgan Earp was killed. His ghost haunts this building.