Hollywood first came to the San Juan Basin in the late ’40s for the impressive Western scenery. Many movies were filmed here over the next 30 years. Some of the more well-known include: “Around the World in Eighty Days,” “Across the Wide Missouri,” “Naked Spur,” “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” and the one pictured above, “A Ticket to Tomahawk.” Here, the D&RGW Silverton Depot’s name has been changed to Epitaph, the fictional town where the movie starts. The script called for a train to make the journey from Epitaph over an unfinished railroad grade to the town of Tomahawk or lose its charter. For the filming of the story’s railroad terminus, the filmmakers simply changed the sign on the depot again – this time to “Tomahawk.” They also reversed the camera view so the station would appear different but it was still the same Silverton Depot. The wooden prop train engine, The Emma Sweeney used in filming was restored, and it now sits on display at Santa Rita Park.
Ed Horvat for Animas Museum, email@example.com