By Mick Woodcock

This was the headline for an article in the Arizona Weekly Journal-Miner published on August 17, 1898. What followed was a detailed account of a locomotive boiler explosion on August 16 in the railroad yard on the north end of Prescott on the banks of Granite Creek.

Today’s Depot Marketplace was originally the railyard for the Santa Fe, Prescott and Phoenix Railway. The current depot having not been built, the depot at the time was a one-story frame structure 150 feet long that housed offices, a waiting room and baggage storage. Cortez Street ended just short of the depot. Beyond it was the wood water tank that held 50,000 gallons of water to replenish the supply carried in steam engine tenders. Next to this was the two-stall wood roundhouse where locomotives were repaired.

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