Fifty years before Smokey Bear was found—near death, clinging to a tree after a forest fire—Capitan was the site of a burgeoning coal boom. With the mine came the railroad, and with the railroad came the founding of the town. At the center of Capitan’s emergence was George A. Titsworth’s general store, an enterprise that set the stage for Titsworth’s rise and ultimate undoing. Titsworth was embroiled in a local murder investigation and—in retaliation, many presumed—became the target of a would-be assassin who went unpunished. Capitan was also home to a successful string of ranching communities, an important outpost for the U.S. Forest Service and one of the nation’s few Civilian Conservation Corps’ camps for girls. Join local historian Gary Cozzens for the whole story of Capitan—Smokey and all.