In 1915, the Tucson Citizen reported that local developer John Murphey had purchased several thousand acres of property in the foothills of the Catalina Mountains to the north of town. The editors of the newspaper projected the purchase as "folly”, an investment in worthless desert hillsides, never to be recovered.
For John Murphey, it took just over a decade to prove his detractors wrong. By the end of the 1920s, homes were being built in the Catalina Foothills neighborhoods, and the distinctive Spanish Colonial and Mission Revival style buildings in the area began to take form.
A short distance east of Campbell Avenue a building was built in 1926, possibly the first restaurant/cafe/tavern east of Oracle Road. The El Corral you dine in tonight is located in the same building (with some modifications of course).
In 1939, the owner of El Corral Cafe, Leroy C. Perkins subdivided a quarter section of land into Los Ranches Perkins. The first dwellings built were used as guest cottages for a seasonal ranch. In 1946, the business name was changed to El Corral Night Club, owned first by E.H. Bruening. The "Nightclub" name continued through the 1950s.
El Corral was purchased again in the 1970s by Agro Land and Cattle Company. The name was simplified to El Corral, but the restaurant has remained in the same building and location. Over the past 40 years and becoming known as one of the best Tucson restaurants, El Corral has continued to serve Tucsonans and their guests some of the best prime rib in Arizona. In 2014, El Corral will be celebrating its 75th year in existence. This is something we take great pride in. Thank you for joining us this evening, and we hope to serve the community for another 75 years!