Bird Cage Theatre 2006-07



90 percent complete replica of the Birdcage Theatre. mid fire paper clay, redwood, metal, glass. 17" x 12" x 6".2006-07

Birdcage Theatre,Tombstone, Arizona. 1881

Of any building in the West, which exemplifies the rough and rowdy lifestyle so typical of the Western American expansion era, The Birdcage theatre in Tombstone Arizona is on top of the list. Look at the facts;

-Theatre, saloon, brothel, and gambling hall.

-Open 24/7/365 for eight consecutive years.

-sixteen gunfights within the building.

-More than two dozen murders.

-Over 140 bullet holes still evident on the property today.

-Longest running poker game in history.

-Legendary Western characters like Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday, Johnny Ringo, Bill

Clanton, the McLaury brothers, Lotta Crabtree, and lily Langtry.

Through the large framed door of the small and simple façade ( the two additional doors have rarely been used ) these characters stepped. From 1889 to 1935 the interior and exterior sat silent and untouched.

From HABS 1932

The semi circular arch of brickwork above the doorways is well crafted and blends well with the peach colored stucco covered blocks of the wall. The west end of the building adjoins the broken stone wall of a former store. The sunburst transom windows replicated in my model were challenging to create, However I was once again aided by Historic American Building Survey (HABS) diagrams. I decided to use the color scheme and lettering applied to the exterior’s second remodeling in the early 70’s. This was supposedly the original look of the building, however I also liked the look and lettering of the first remodel in 1935. I find the modern signage and advertising on todays Birdcage distracts from the beauty of the façade.


Additional information



from HABS diagrams, Birdcage stage










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