Ajo, Arizona

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In Ajo, Arizona you might think they grow lots of garlic, as ajo means garlic in Spanish. The truth however, is that Ajo is a mining town with no particular propensity for growing that bulbous root.

Ajo takes its name from early Spanish explorers who called it like they heard it. The Indians in that area, the Tohono O’odam people, called it o’oho meaning paint. The mineral rich dirt was a source of red paint pigments for those early inhabitants. Ajo has been mined by the Indians, Spanish and Americans for its minerals, but don’t expect to find any garlic the next time you are driving through.

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