The area in Southern Arizona known as the Sulfur Springs Valley was a wild mostly unexplored territory after the civil war. This sacred ground was the land of Kachise the famous Apache Indian Chief and he protected his home with bloodshed. But in 1880 the railroad punched it's way across the great southwest building section stations at regular intervals along the track. One such station was established at the intersection of the Southern Pacific's main line and the Croton Spring road. The station was named Cochise, after the Apache warrior. Cochise Station consisted of railroad cars to house the workers with no amenities. The railroad employed mostly Irish and Chinese. An entrepreneur of 28 years old, one John J. Rath worked as a telegraph operator near Fort Bowie and found the Cochise section station interesting. He became the railroad agent based at the camp and began to build a town. He dug a well and made an agreement to sell water to the railroad which prompted them to build a full on station at the camp. And then, in 1896 he began building the double adobe structure he called, the HOTEL RATH.
The Hotel Rath soon became the Cochise Hotel and offered rooms with beds. Business was soon plentiful. Railroad workers who would stop at the Cochise Station to take on water and coal, the cowboys who would ship their cattle east, the miners who would deliver their ore for transport and the passengers who were either east or west bound on the railroad. The hotel quickly became a hub for the area and served as the Wells Fargo Express office, telegraph office, post office and hotel / restaurant. Over the next hundred and fifteen years the hotel changed hands only four times and now the fifth owner, Phillip Gessert, has taken on the charge of John J. Rath himself.
The exciting story of the history of this ground will be reviewed for you in this web site, as well as a look of the current renovation and dreams of one day becoming a destination "bed and breakfast".
Come on inside and real all about it. Someday you may walk into this lobby and sign your name in the register along with the visitors who walked these floors for over 100 years.
Many of the words written in this website are taken directly from the stacks of old newspaper clippings loaned to us by Willie Adams, grandson of Liz Husband past owner of the hotel for the past fifty years.
When possible a line in italics is written below a paragraph that was mostly taken directly from a news article, and notated by the following.
The Publication, The Date, by the Author.