The desert in 1885.

1885 was a year a full century before the modern time of Marty McFly: 1985. It had been 20 years since Hill Valley's founding and a festival was held to honor the anniversary.

The town consisted of two major dirt streets which intersected at Courthouse Square and the construction of a new county courthouse and clock tower. One of the streets went to the Hill Valley Train Station.

Most of the surrounding countryside was mountains and valleys with deciduous trees and farther out desert with mesas to the north of the town and the ravine to the southeast of the town.

New locations[]

To previous history

New culture[]

New slang[]


Timeline 1[]

This is the original timeline before Emmett Brown or Marty McFly interfere, in this timeline Clara Clayton falls into Shonash Ravine


A photo of Buford Tannen a prominent outlaw in Hill Valley in 1885

    • William Sean McFly is born to Seamus and Maggie McFly. He is the first McFly born in America.
  • Saturday, August 29
    • There is a meeting of the townspeople over who will pick up the new schoolteacher on September 4. No one volunteers.
  • Wednesday, September 2
    • Native American Horseback-archers are chased near Hill Valley by the United States Cavalry.
  • Friday, September 4
    • The new Hill Valley Courthouse clock is delivered to Hill Valley by train. Also on board the same train as a passenger is Clara Clayton, who had been commissioned to be the new teacher at the schoolhouse near Carson Spur, outside Hill Valley. With no one to meet Clara upon her arrival at the station, she then rents two horses and a wagon buckboardfrom Joe Statler, then sets out to find the schoolhouse on her own.
    • A snake spooks the horses pulling Clara's wagon. They then ride madly into Shonash Ravine, killing her instantly.
  • Saturday, September 5
    • The Hill Valley Festival is held. As part of Hill Valley’s anniversary festivities, the new courthouse clock is started at exactly 8:00 p.m. PST. Photographs with the clock are offered to townspeople wishing to pose with the new timepiece.
    • Elmer H. Johnson presents the Colt Peacemaker made by Samuel Colt's Patent Firearms.
    • Buford and his gang attend the festival, they are threatened by James Strickland and his deputy to hand in their weapons if they want to join the festival which they willingly agree, and then proceeded to the festival. Before he leaves, Strickland tells Buford that “the only party he’d be smiling is that see’s with the end of a rope”.

Timeline 2[]


Emmett Brown in 1885 taking a picture with the clock.

  • Thursday, January 1: Dr. Emmett Brown (of 1985) accidentally arrives from 1955 and appears at an altitude of about fifty feet over the future location of Lyon Estates (about two miles south of Hill Valley). Despite damage to the vehicle's flying circuits, Doc and the DeLorean are not seriously damaged by the landing. Doc then goes into town and sets up as a blacksmith in Hill Valley. (In doing so, Doc may interfere with the normal timeline by replacing another blacksmith or stealing business from other blacksmiths in town or other towns — however, it is possible there would have been no blacksmith at all if Doc were not there.)
  • Date Unknown between January 1 and September 3: Buford "Mad Dog" Tannen (the great-grandfather of Biff Tannen) asks Doc to shoe his horse but does not pay for them. A shoe would later fall off, leading Buford to break a whiskey bottle and subsequently shoot the horse in frustration. Doc buries the broken DeLorean time machine in the Delgado mine
  • April: William Sean McFly born, first son to Seamus and Maggie McFly and the first of the McFly family to be born in America.
  • Saturday, July 4: Doc passes out after drinking one shot of whiskey at the 4th of July celebrations.
  • Saturday, August 29: There is a meeting of the townspeople over who will pick up the new schoolteacher on September 4. Originally, no-one volunteers. In the altered timeline with Doc, he volunteers; and in the timeline without Marty, he picks her up.
  • Tuesday, September 1: Doc writes a letter to Marty McFly, who is stranded in 1955.

Timeline 3[]

  • Wednesday, September 2: Marty McFly arrives in 1885 to rescue Doc and accidentally rips the fuel line in the time machine. While running from a bear, he hits the fence of the McFly farm, leading him to meet his ancestors Seamus and Maggie McFly.
  • Thursday, September 3: Marty runs into Buford Tannen and upsets him, causing Tannen to nearly hang Marty (going under the name "Clint Eastwood"). Doc saves Marty in the nick of time.
  • Friday, September 4: Doc tries repairing the DeLorean, and accidentally saves the life of Clara Clayton, who was supposed to originally fall into Shonash Ravine (which would have resulted in the ravine being renamed Clayton Ravine). It is love at first sight.
  • Saturday, September 5: The Hill Valley festival, and the inauguration of the newly built courthouse and its clock. Doc and Clara dance. Originally, Buford Tannen shot Doc here, causing Doc to die two days later, but thanks to "Clint," this is avoided.
  • Sunday, September 6: Doc and Marty prepare to go back to the future. Doc says goodbye to Clara and tells her the truth, but she doesn't believe him, and he brokenheartedly goes to the Palace Saloon.
  • Monday, September 7:
    • Marty goes into town to find Doc in the saloon. Doc passes out after drinking a single shot of whiskey; and Marty, Chester, and Joey attempt to revive him.
    • Tannen shows up in front of the saloon right as Doc awakens; he demands that "Eastwood" come outside and face him. Marty and Doc are ready to escape through the back door when Tannen calls Marty "yellow"; Marty decides not to face Tannen, showing an incredible amount of growth from a mere day earlier. Tannen's gang gets a hold of Doc and threatens to shoot him after Doc and Marty attempt an escape.
    • Marty then decides to face Tannen, and survives thanks to a trick learned from the Clint Eastwood movie A Fistful of Dollars. He and Doc then flee to catch the train.
    • Meanwhile, Clara, on a train to San Francisco, hears someone talking about a man talking about her, and she stops the train and jumps off to find Doc. She discovers clues at the blacksmith shop and runs to the spur line Doc and Marty are using;
    • Doc and Marty use a stolen train's locomotive to push the DeLorean up to 88 mph toward Shonash Ravine to go back to 1985. Marty goes back to the future; but Doc, who went to Clara's rescue, is forced to stay behind.
  • Tuesday, September 8:
    • Clara Clayton's funeral was to occur on this day if she had fallen into the Ravine.[1]
  • Tuesday, September 15:
    • Emmett Brown and Clara Clayton get married.[1]
  • Tuesday, December 1[1]: Had Clara fallen into the ravine, it would have been renamed for her on this day. Since "Clint" is presumed to have crashed along with the locomotive, he enters the town's folklore as the man who beat "Mad Dog" Tannen and stopped bandits from stealing a locomotive, and Shonash Ravine is instead renamed Eastwood Ravine.


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Notes and references[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Back to the Future: The Card Game Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Card" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Card" defined multiple times with different content