UA Minute in History: Maricopa Hall Curse

Who were Two-Tooth Gertie and Dimond Lill, and what do they have to do with the haunting of Maricopa Hall? Find the answers with Investigative Editor Jamie Verwys in this UA Minute in History.

Maricopa Hall is the University of Arizona’s only all-women dorm. It also has a reputation as one of the UA’s most haunted locations on campus. 

So, what is the story of the Wild West brawl that still spurs ghost stories today?

It was the 1860s and mining was a booming industry. For saloon girls, the industry brought a revolving door of customers with it. One night, rival dancers Diamond Lil and Two Tooth Gertie got into a spat while both vying for the same wealthy prospector. As they bickered, Gertie pulled the knife she always carried on her and threw it into Lil’s shoulder. Lil, known as a crack shot, fired her pearl-handled pistol, striking Gertie in the right eye. 

As the story goes, Gertie used her dying breath to curse Diamond Lil and the ground Maricopa Hall now stands on. 

I’m Jamie Verwys with the Arizona Daily Wildcat and this has been your minute in history. 

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