On an exceptionally warm day in the spring of 1881 Joe Mayer rolled into Big Bug Stage Station on the banks of Big Bug Creek, thirty-two miles southeast of Prescott, Arizona. Joe was invited into the house of Bill Muncy, the Stage-Master, and by the next morning Joe had purchased the station for $3800 in gold. He later told his family that he'd felt like "He had come home." The town of Mayer grew quickly... The hotel and cat houses were erected soon and the business block came shortly thereafter. A barber shop, mercantile, dance hall and saloon attracted all who came through. By 1903 Joe Mayer and his town had become major players in the creation of the "New West". European, Chinese, Greek, Apache, call them what you will, Joe welcomed all of them. He was known to be fair and even minded, even in the hard times.

      In 1909 Joe Mayer suffered an accidental gunshot wound and died two days later. His wife, Sadie, lived on with her family and continued to run things as best she could. Sadie died in 1934 and the family ran the Mayer business up until 1989 when Jim, Susan, and Mike Connors bought it. They continue to restore it to this day.

      Mike and his family live behind "The Old Mayer Mercantile" antique shop, which used to be "Joe's Mercantile Store". Next door is the old Barber Shop where the cowboy artist Frank Polk used to clean the tubs with coal oil. On the other side of the Mercantile is the Old Dance Hall, now known as "Big Bug Station", town headquarters. Yo Ray Shong, internationally known custom furniture maker out of Massachusetts lives and works in the Old Saloon. The Old Post Office is next door to the main building, with antiques and vintage goods to be found therein. With an elevation of 4,386 ft and perfect weather, Mayer is not a bad place... Well, it may have had its moments.