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New Mexico

New Mexico History Timeline

1200s - 1500s
  • (1200's - 1500's) Pueblo Indians established villages along the Rio Grande and its tributaries
  • (1536) Cabeza de Vaca, Estevan the Moor, and others began rumors of the Seven Cities of Cibola (Gold)
  • (1540) Francisco Vasquez de Coronado, while searching for that gold, discovered the Grand Canyon
  • (1598) Juan de Onate established San Juan de los Caballeros as the capital
  • (1600) San Gabriel founded as the second capital
  • (1601) Colonists deserted San Gabriel
  • (1609) Governor Pedro de Peralta established new capital at Santa Fe
  • (1626) Spanish Inquisition established
  • (1641) Governor Luis de Rosas assassinated
  • (1680) Pueblo Indians forced colonists and Spaniards to retreat to Mexico
1700s - 1800s
  • (1706) Villa de Albuquerque founded
  • (1743) trappers reached Santa Fe
  • (1807) Zebulon Pike led first Anglo-American expedition to New Mexico
  • (1821) Mexico declared independence from Spain; Santa Fe Trail opened
  • (1828) Gold discovered in Ortiz Mountains
  • (1837) Governor Albino Perez and top officials assassinated in revolt against Mexican taxation
  • (1846) Mexican-American War began; Stephen Watts Kearny annexed New Mexico to U.S.
  • (1848) Mexican-American War ended; Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo signed
  • (1850) New Mexico designated a territory; denied statehood
  • (1854) Gadsden Purchase added 45,000 square miles to territory
  • (1861) Confederates invaded New Mexico; Territory lost northern-most section; Territories of Arizona and Colorado created
  • (1863-1864) The Long Walk - Navajos and Apaches relocated to Bosque Redondo
  • (1868) Navajos and Apaches return to homelands
  • (1878) Railroad arrived
  • (1881) Billy the Kid shot
  • (1886) Geronimo surrenders; Indian uprisings ceased
  • (1898) Thomas Alva Edison produced first motion picture in New Mexico
  • (1910) New Mexico Constitution drafted
  • (1912) New Mexico became 47th state


  • (1916) Francisco "Pancho" Villa attacked Columbus, New Mexico
  • (1920) Women won the right to vote
  • (1922) Oil discovered on Navajo Reservation
  • (1942) New Mexico soldiers forced to endure World War II Bataan Death March
  • (1945) World's first atomic bomb detonated at Trinity bomb site southern New Mexico
  • (1947) Alleged crash of UFO near Roswell
  • (1948) Native Americans won right to vote in elections
  • (1950) Uranium discovered
  • (1980) Deadliest prison riot in U. S. occurred at New Mexico State Penitentiary
  • (1982) Space shuttle Columbia landed at Holloman Air Force Base
  • (1998) New Mexico celebrated cuartocentenario, 400th anniversary of its founding
  • (2000) Valles Caldera National Preserve established
  • (2005) 11.65% of state's employment was derived directly or indirectly from military spending
  • (2008) New Mexico had highest poverty rate in US
  • (2009) Death penalty abolished
  • (2010) Runway opened at world's first spaceport in New Mexico
  • (2010) Governor Richardson announced he would not pardon Billy the Kid
  • (2011) Wildfire forced officials to close Los Alamos National Labratory, voluntary evacuation issued for residents

New Mexico Photographs

CoronadoPueblosGadsen PurchaseGeronimoSanta Fe TrailPie TownZebulon PikeStephen Watts KearneyTrinity Nuclear Test

New Mexico Cities, Counties & Area Codes

City County Area Code
Albuquerque Bernalillo 505
Reserve Catron 575
Roswell Chaves 575
Grants Cibola 505
Raton Colfax 575
Clovis Curry 575
Fort Sumner De Baca 575
Las Cruces Dona Ana 575
Carlsbad Eddy 575
Silver City Grant 575
Santa Rosa Guadalupe 575
Roy Harding 575
Lordsburg Hidalgo 575
Hobbs Lea 575
Ruidoso Lincoln 575
Los Alamos Los Alamos 505
Deming Luna 575
Gallup McKinley 505
Mora Mora 575
Alamogordo Otero 575
Tucumcari Quay 575
Espanola Rio Arriba 505
Portales Roosevelt 575
Farmington San Juan 505
Las Vegas San Miguel 505
Rio Rancho Sandoval 505
Santa Fe Santa Fe 505
Truth or Consequences Sierra 575
Socorro Socorro 575
Taos Taos 575
Moriarty Torrance 505
Clayton Union 575
Los Lunas Valencia 505

About the Author

John Moen is a cartographer who along with his wife are the orignal founders of worldatlas.com. He and his wife, Chris Woolwine-Moen, produced thousands of award-winning maps that are used all over the world and content that aids students, teachers, travelers and parents with their geography and map questions. Today, it's one of the most popular educational sites on the web.

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This page was last updated on April 7, 2017.