Bisbee's St. Elmo Makes National 'Dive Bar' List

Courtesy of St. Elmo (via Facebook)

A longtime watering hole in the old Arizona mining town of Bisbee recently was recognized as a "historic dive bar" by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

St. Elmo was one of seven dive bars honored by the organization as part of last month's National Dive Bar Day. The National Trust says such businesses "are an integral part of America’s historic character," in that they "emulate the love and energy we put into our communities."

Of St. Elmo, the National Trust had this to say:

The longest continually operating drinking establishment in the state of Arizona, St. Elmo survived Prohibition by converting into a soda shop and was later regularly patronized by celebrities such as John Wayne and Charlie Sheen. The current owner of the bar, Phil Yossem, says the vibe is most similar to that of the Mos Eisley Cantina in "Star Wars," according to a story from Tucson.com. The best drink on the menu is the Bloody Mary, which uses a special “chili water” to give it some extra kick.

Longtime Arizona Highways readers might remember St. Elmo from our October 2013 issue, when it appeared in a Bisbee portfolio by photographer Jill Richards.

The other six bars on the list were in New York, Pennsylvania, the District of Columbia, Louisiana, Texas and Idaho. You can read about the rest of them on the National Trust's website.

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Comments

In the late 70's we used to say you had to "burn your shoes" when you left there. So many memories and still so much fun. Thanks Phil!

I have said that walking across the room there is a test of your strength because your shoes stick to the floor with every step. You’re lucky you could actually extract your shoes when you left so that you could burn them.

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