Timeline 12 was a timeline which came into existence when Dr. Emmett Brown accidentally traveled to 1885 from 1955.



  • 1885
    • Thursday, January 1
      • 12:00 a.m. Emmett Brown arrives from 1955 in Timeline 11 after the DeLorean was struck by lightning. The DeLorean's time circuits have been scrambled and shorted out by an overload caused by the lightning bolt, rendering the car useless for time travel and stranding Doc in the past. The overload also permanently damages the car's flying circuits, disabling its hover-conversion feature for good.[1][2][3]
    • JanuaryAugust
      • Stranded in 1885, Doc settles in Hill Valley, where he sets himself up as a blacksmith. He then tries improvising methods in attempting repairs on the DeLorean, only to realize that most of the technology he needs will not be available until the next century, with suitable replacement parts not becoming available until 1947. Nevertheless, Doc becomes adept at shoeing horses and repairing wagons, alongside his own experiments using the primitive technology available for the time.[2]
      • With the DeLorean's time circuit control microchip shorted out by the lightning bolt, Doc writes detailed instructions (including drawing schematic diagrams) on rebuilding it with 1950s-era vacuum tubes and transistors. He then places these in the DeLorean before burying it in the Delgado Mine, where he hopes it will remain undisturbed and preserved until his younger self and Marty unearth it 70 years later.[2]
      • Doc is hired by Buford Tannen to shoe Buford's horse, but is not paid. After getting thrown off his horse and breaking a bottle of whiskey, Buford blames Doc for the accident and demands a total of eighty dollars from him; five dollars for the whiskey and seventy-five dollars for the horse, which Buford had shot.[2]
    • Saturday, July 4
      • Doc passes out after drinking one shot of whiskey at the 4th of July celebrations.[2]
    • Saturday, August 29
      • There is a meeting of the townspeople over who will pick up the new schoolteacher on September 4. Doc volunteers.[2]
    • Tuesday, September 1


  • 1955
    • Saturday, November 12
      • 9:45 p.m. A vehicle driven by a Western Union agent arrives at the entrance to Lyon Estates. The agent delivers to Marty, on time at that specified location, in the pouring rain, the letter Doc had dispatched in 1885. Discovering that Doc is alive, Marty realizes that only Doc's younger self could help him.[1]
      • 10:05 p.m. Arriving at Courthouse Square, Marty scares the young Doc by "returning" moments after Doc had sent the younger Marty back to the future. Doc utters "Great Scott!" and suddenly faints. Marty drives the unconscious Doc back to his house in Doc's car.[1]
    • Sunday, November 13
      • 7:01 a.m. Young Doc reads the soggy old letter his future self had written 70 years in the past.[2]
    • Monday, November 14
      • Marty and Doc uncover the DeLorean with repair instructions and his walkie talkie from the Delgado Mine near Boot Hill Cemetery. They discover Doc's grave and learn about Buford Tannen. They elect to photograph the headstone, as it will serve as a "ripple-effect" indicator of Marty’s success in 1885.[2]
      • Accessing the City Archives after normal closing hours, Marty and Doc discover the photograph of Doc standing in front the clock in 1885, confirming that it was indeed Doc who was shot and killed by Buford Tannen. Marty insists on going back to 1885 and rescuing him.[2]
    • Tuesday, November 15
      • Doc repairs and "soups up" the unearthed DeLorean, building a new time circuit with vacuum tubes and transistors. He also fits the DeLorean with new whitewall tires, and installs fresh oversized batteries on his and Marty's walkie talkies.[2]
    • Wednesday, November 16
      • Marty and Doc drive to the Pohatchee Drive-In Theater, which Doc had chosen as the location to send Marty back to 1885 as there were no trees in either time at that location and because it was far enough away from Hill Valley that there would be minimal risk of the DeLorean being seen.[2]
      • 10:20 a.m. Marty departs from 1955 to 1885.[2] This creates Timeline 13, which begins at Marty's entry point of 1885 and timeline 12 fades away.