The Prescott area has always drawn people; over 9,000 years ago, a flourishing population of up to 100,000 people inhabited the area. These may have been the ancestors of the Yavapai Tribe whose reservation now borders the city.
Prescott developed rapidly and in 1865 was described as being built exclusively of wood and inhabited almost entirely by Americans. Both of these facts made it unique among early communities in Arizona. Prescott lost its title as the Capital of Arizona to Tucson and finally to Phoenix in 1889. In 1900, a devastating fire burned Prescott to the ground; but it was rebuilt, and many of the buildings you see today are reminders of its past. Today, the older residential streets are lined with tall trees and pitched-roof frame houses, including turreted Victorians. Prescott has many homes and businesses on the National Register of Historic Places and its white granite courthouse, set among green lawns and spreading trees, reflects the Midwestern and New England background of Prescottâ€™s pioneers.