Exploring the history of Phoenix, Arizona and a little bit of Los Angeles and San Francisco, California.

Drinking coffee in old-time Phoenix


It's 1899, we're in Phoenix, and I'd really like some coffee. Jump into the back of the buckboard and let's go to Coffee Al's, which is on Washington just west of Center Street (Central Avenue).

Yes, I know we had coffee at the boarding house this morning - if you can call it that! The brown muck that Mrs. Stick-in-the-Mud, or whatever her name is, serves there ought to be against the law. I poured mine out onto a cactus and I hope it didn't kill it!

Here we are at Coffee Al's. Yes, it's also a lunch counter, so maybe I'll get some sandwiches that we can eat later. Give me a dime - that should be more than enough, I'll bring back your change. You stay here with Efron and Wilhelmina, they seem to be a little nervous this morning, it must be all of the traffic on Washington. This town gets more crowded all of the time! I'll be right back.


Here you are, I got us each a cup of coffee, and a sandwich that we can share. It was a little bit more expensive than I had thought, sorry. Here's your change.

I mixed in a little honey in our coffee. Isn't it wonderful! Yeah, I think the beehives are over by the town ditch, I'm not sure. It sure is better than that boarding house coffee, don't you think?

1900 ad for Coffee Al's, Phoenix, Arizona.

It's been a busy day, what do you say about stopping at Coffee Al's on the way back? No, don't worry, we don't have to turn the buckboard around, there's a counter on both sides of Washington. People in Phoenix love their coffee!

Thank you for drinking coffee with me!

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