New Mexico has had a very colorful past, from history came cultures, economy, and treasured landmarks. New Mexico is the place to visit to expand your intellectual horizons. The state’s unique geology ranges from the Carlsbad Caverns to White Sand dunes to the high Rocky Mountains located in the state. New Mexico also has world-class science at two national laboratories, several observatories, Spaceport America, and the Very Large Array, among others. You can find history in every part of the state. New Mexico has had war battlefields, archaeological digs, and museums that encompass almost every person’s interest.
At the wildlife refuges, visitors can learn more about the environment all around us. New Mexico, The Land of Enchantment, is an extraordinary place of history. New Mexico has plenty of diverse culture in our state. First is the Native Americans, their unique languages, colorful dances, arts and crafts are just part of the traditions that have been passed down from generation to generation. The Native Americans in New Mexico have some of the best world class casinos around. Native American groups have inhabited the territory of New Mexico for thousands of years, many centuries before Europeans reached the Americas.
Reminders of their ancient presence are located throughout our state. There are cliff dwellings and abandoned cities along ancient trade routes, and symbols etched in rock to show their presence. The history and architecture of New Mexico have strong roots in the culture brought by settlers from Spain, and continue to be influenced by people from Mexico. Latino or Hispanic culture and customs have a major presence everywhere in our state, from street names to adobe architecture, to arts, dance and music, and who can’t forget about the food. New Mexico is known worldwide for its Mexican food.
Throughout history in New Mexico several historic landmarks and monuments have arisen. You have the Gila Cliff Dwellings; a National Monument that offers a glimpse into the homes and lives of the Mogollon people who lived in this area. You also have the White Sands Missile Range which is home to the world’s first atomic bomb explosion. It is used by the military to test missiles. The VLA, Very Large Array is located about 50 miles west of Socorro, NM. This is an awesome site to see, it is used for astronomical research. The large antennas are arranged in a “Y” shape.
A lot of famous people have come from the historic New Mexico as well. Probably one of best known is, William H. Bonney, “Billy the Kid”. Through all the battles of Lincoln County, Billy the Kid is known as the infamous gunfighter, he is known practically in all history books. You have well known artists, Georgia O’Keefe, racecar drivers like Al Unser, country musicians, Michael Martin Murphy, and who could forget about a certain bear called, Smokey the Bear. There has been a few famous politicians from New Mexico as well, Harrison Schmitt and Pete Domenici to name a few.
Native Americans played a big part in New Mexico history, a few well known ones were, Geronimo, Cochise and Victorio. New Mexico had plenty of Native Americans to inhibit our land. There was the Apache, Navajo, Anasazi just to name a few. With all the rivers, mountains, historical sites and four seasons of weather who would not like to live in New Mexico. People come worldwide to take a step back in time and visit the well known culture and history in New Mexico that is why it is the Land of Enchantment.