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Timeline of New Mexico History

c. 25000 B.C. Sandia people leave earliest evidence of human existence in what is now New Mexico.

c. 10000-9000 B.C. Clovis hunters roam area in search of mammoth, bison and other game.

c. 9000-8000 B.C. Folsom people flourish throughout Southwest at the end of the last Ice Age.

c. 10000-500 B.C. Cochise people are first inhabitants to cultivate corn, squash and beans, the earliest evidence of agriculture in the Southwest.

A.D. 300-1400 Mogollon culture introduces highly artistic pottery and early architecture in the form of pit houses.

A.D. 1-700 Anasazi basketmakers elevate weaving to a high art, creating baskets, clothing, sandals and utensils.

A.D. 700-1300 Anasazi culture culminates in the highly developed Chaco Civilization.

A.D. 1200-1500s Pueblo Indians establish villages along the Rio Grande and its tributaries.

1536 Cabeza de Vaca, Estevan the Moor and two others reach Culiacdn, Mexico, after possibly crossing what is now southern New Mexico, and begin rumors of the Seven Cities of Cibola.

1539 Fray Marcos de Niza and Estevan lead expedition to find Cibola and reach the Zuni village of Hawikuh, where Estevan is killed.

1540-42 Francisco Vasquez de Coronado explores area from Gulf of California to present-day Kansas, discovers the Grand Canyon.

1580-81 Fray Agustin Rodriguez leads expedition to New Mexico; four members of the party killed by Indians.

1582-83 Fray Bernadino Beltran and Fray Antonio de Espejo lead expedition to New Mexico to search for survivors of the ill-fated Rodriguez mission.

1598 Juan de Onate establishes the first Spanish capital of San Juan de los Caballeros at the Tewa village of Ohke north of present-day Espanola

1599 Battle at Aroma between natives and Spaniards; seeds of Pueblo Revolt sown.

1600 San Gabriel, second capital of New Mexico, is founded at the confluence of the Rio Grande and the Chama River.

1601 Mass desertion of San Gabriel by colonists; new recruits front Spain and Mexico sent to reinforce colony.

1605 Onate expedition to the Colorado River; visits El Morro, leaves message on Inscription Rock.

1608 Onate removed as governor and sent to Mexico City to be tried for mistreatment of the Indians and abuse of power. Decision made by Spanish Crown to continue settlement of New Mexico as a royal province.

1609-10 Gov. Pedro de Peralta establishes a new capital at Santa Fe. Construction begins on the Palace of the Governors. Gaspar de Villagra publishes epic history on the founding of New Mexico, the first book printed about any area in the modern United States.

1626 Spanish Inquisition established in New Mexico.

1641 Gov. Luis de Rosas assassinated by colonists during conflict between the church and state.

1680 Pueblo Indian Revolt Spanish survivors flee to El Paso del Norte.

Late 1600's Navajos, Apaches, lies, and Comanches begin raids against Pueblo Indians.

1692-93 Don Diego de Vargas recolonizes Santa Fe. Spanish civilization returns to New Mexico.

1695 Santa Cruz de la Cahada (Canada) founded.

1696 Second Pueblo Revolt; efforts thwarted by Gov. De Vargas.

1706 Villa de Albuquerque founded.

1743 French trappers reach Santa Fe and begin limited trade with the Spanish.

1776 Franciscan friars Dominguez and Escalante explore route from out New Mexico to California.

1786 Gov. Juan Bautista de Anza makes peace with the Comanches.

1793 First school text printed in New Mexico by Padre Antonio Jose Martinez of Taos.

1807 Zebulon Pike leads first Anglo American expedition into New Mexico. Publishes account of way of life in New Mexico upon return to U.S.

1821 Mexico declares independence from Spain. Santa Fe Trail opened to international trade.

1828 First major gold discovery in western U. S. made in Ortiz Mountains south of Santa Fe.

1837 Chimayo Revolt against Mexican taxation leads to the assassination of Gov. Albino Perez and top officials.

1841 Texas soldiers invade New Mexico and claim all land east of the Rio Grande. Efforts thwarted by Gov. Manuel Armijo.

1846 Mexican-American War begins. Stephen Watts Kearny annexes New Mexico to the United States.

1847 Taos Rebellion against the U.S. military. Gov. Chat Charles Bent killed.

1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo ends Mexican-American War.

1850 New Mexico (which included present-day Arizona, southern Colorado, southern Utah, and southern Nevada) is designated a territory but denied statehood.

1851 Bishop Jean Baptiste Lamy arrives in New Mexico and establishes schools, hospitals and orphanages throughout the territory

1854 The Gadsden Purchase front Mexico adds 45,000 square miles to the territory

1861 Confederates invade New Mexico front Texas. The Confederate Territory of Arizona is declared with the capital at La Mesilla. Territory of Colorado is created. New Mexico loses extreme northern-most section to the new territory

1862 Battles of Velarde de and Glorieta Pass fought, ends confederate occupation of New Mexico.

1863-68 Known as the "Long Walk," Navajos and Apaches are relocated to Bosque Redondo: finally allowed to return to their homelands after thousands die of disease and starvation.

1863 New Mexico is partitioned in half. Territory of Arizona is created.

1878 The railroad arrives in New Mexico, opening full-scale trade and migration from the east and midwest. Lincoln County War erupts in southeast New Mexico

1881 Billy the Kid shot by Sheriff Pat Garrett in Fort Sumner N.M.

1886 Geronimo surrenders; Indian hostilities cease in the Southwest.

1898 First movie filmed in New Mexico, Indian Day School by Thomas A. Edison.

1906 People of New Mexico and Arizona vote on issue of joint statehood, New Mexico voting in favor and Arizona against.

1910 New Mexico Constitution drafted in preparation for statehood.

1912 New Mexico admitted to the Union as the 47th state.

1916 Pancho Villa raids Columbus, N.M.

1920 Adoption of the l9th Amendment gives women the right to vote.

1922 Secretary of State Soledad Chacon and Superintendent of Public Instruction Isabel Eckles elected first women to hold statewide office.

1923-24 Oil is discovered on the Navajo Reservation.

1930-43 Great Depression. Federal New Deal funds provide employment for many and causes numerous public buildings to be constructed.

1942-45 New Mexico soldiers serving in the 200th Coast Artillery during World War II are captured by the Japanese and forced to endure the Bataan Death March. Navajo "Codetalkers" are influential in helping end the war. Secret atomic laboratories established at Los Alamos.

1945 World's first atomic bomb detonated at Trinity Site in southern New Mexico after its development at Los Alamos.

1947 UFO allegedly crashes between Roswell and Corona, believers claim U.S. government institutes massive coverup of the incident.

1948 Native Americans will the right to vote in state elections.

195O Uranium discovered near Grants.

1957 Buddy Holly records Peggy Sue at Norman Petty Studio in Clovis.

1966 New state capitol, the "Roundhouse," is dedicated.

1969 Proposed new state constitution is rejected by voters.

1982 Space shuttle Columbia lands at White Sands Space Harbor oil Holloman Air Force Base near Alamogordo.

1992 New Mexico observes Columbus Quincentenary, welcomes Cristobal Colon XX, direct descendent of Christopher Columbus.

1998 New Mexico celebrates its cuartocentenario, commemorating its 1598 founding by Juan de Onate.

[For further information on the culture and history of New Mexico, try the new, New Mexico CultureNet website. It may be complicated to navigate right now, but it has interesting stories on the history of our state. - editor]

Taken from the New Mexico Blue Book 1997-2000