About The Box 8 Ranch
These footprints represent the Matriarch of the Smith Family, Elizabeth Mitchell Smith. Born in 1889 in Yuma, Arizona. She arrived in Superior by covered wagon with her Mother, Eloisa Amavisca Mitchell and Father, Harry Mitchell, a miner, in July of 1904. Approximately 15 years after the death of Mattie Earp in the town of Pinal, just West of Superior. Also, in the wagon were her younger sisters: Rachel and Francis. Imagine if you will the heat of summer and the dust from the dry dirt road, now known as Highway 60. Lizzie, as she was known to friends, recounted the family had been followed for a distance by "bad men" and her Father had given them a spare horse to dissuade them from harming any of the family. The Smith Family was welcomed by George Lobb of the Lobb Family. George was the original US Postmaster of Superior. It was not long before Lizzie met a gentleman, Charles Hamilton Smith, a Michigan native. He had, by most accounts, run away as a teenager to join the Spanish-American War. He then wandered as a prospector and when he located a gold nugget in a wash surrounding Superior, he became a lifelong mine enthusiast and developer. After marrying, the couple finally settled outside of Superior on a ranch that Elizabeth homesteaded. It was known as the Smith Ranch and the brand was registered with the State of Arizona as the Box 8. Always a business woman, and aided by her seven children, Elizabeth planted orchards, put in the first private swimming pool in the area and had plans to develop a tavern. Many octogenarians, school kids in the 1920's and 1930's, have recounted days of "playing hooky" eating hamburgers and swimming at the ranch. Lizzie's plans were circumvented by fate and after losing three of her children, she sold the original ranch and moved to "town" around the time of World War II. She tried her hand at boarding houses, finally building her own house on Heiner drive. Her love of planting finally outweighed the convenience of living "in town" and with her son, Fred, in 1956, she built a new house and developed some of the property where the footprints are currently located. She planted fruit trees, evergreens, palm trees, rose bushes and flowers which she sold for extra money on church holidays. The first of several chicken houses was constructed and a barn for a couple of cows, Lizzie had her ranch again. The chickens and cows are gone as are many of the trees, but this remains the Box 8 Ranch. The footprints have been relocated and a new dream has begun.