Old Tucson Studios, located just west of the Tucson Mountain range, is known as a mecca for western movie buffs. Many famous movies and TV shows were made there. Columbia pictures actually built Old Tucson Studios. It is reported that it took 40 days to build the sets. The studio was built in 1938 for the filming of the movie “Arizona“. The movie has a 6.9 (out of 10) rating on imdb.com.
After filming was done the studio was open to the public in 1939. Old Tucson Script was issued for the occasion. The script came in four denominations – 25 cents, 50 cents, 1 dollar and 5 dollars. All four had the same format. They were printed on plain white paper that measured 5-3/4″ x 2-1/2″. The front side (the side with the serial number) says “OLD TUCSON” 1860/1940. PROMISE TO PAY BEARER (denomination inside) with a different animal in the circle to the right of the note. They are signed by ”Mayor Nick C Hall” and “Treasurer Donna Lewis”. All the notes have a different color scheme for each denomination. The reverse side has an image from the movie/Old Tucson, the denomination, and read “THIS SCRIPT ONLY VALID AT OLD TUCSON AND IS REDEEMABLE IN UNITED STATES COIN PRIOR TO NOVEMBER 19, 1940”.
The 25 cent note is in a purple-blue color and has a calf for the animal. The scene on the back appears to be a chapel with a flag in the middle of the scene.
The 50 cent note has a brown under print on it and has a rooster for the animal. The scene on the reverse is “Phoebes’ Pie Shop”.
The 1 dollar note has a red under print. It has a stallion in the circle. The reverse has the US Post Office Old Tucson on it.
The 5 dollar note is printed with yellow and has a lion on the right. The reverse has a street scene. The 5 dollar note has one difference to it versus the other notes. It says “REDEEMABLE ONLY IN GAMBLING CASINO”. This would indicate that one of the attractions on site was a ”casino”. It is unknown whether this was a curiosity shop or if it had any form of gambling inside.