Pinetop: Origin of the Town Name
Originally named Penrod — after David Penrod, a settler who built and ran the area's first sawmill around 1891 — the town acquired its present name from a local saloon keeper named Walt Rigney.
Walt's exceptionally tall stature earned him the nickname “Pinetop” from his saloon patrons, who were primarily soldiers stationed at Fort Apache.
Over time, “Pinetop” came to apply not only to Walt himself, but to the town as a whole (which, by the way, was populated exclusively by the Penrod children — all 13 of them — until 1906).
Evidently the new name grew so popular that the local post office officially adopted it on January 31, 1895.