The pueblos’ roller-coaster rise to
by Paul Krza
tribes establish villages, which the Spanish will call "pueblos,"
along the Rio Grande. Some evidence suggests they are descendants
of the Anasazi, whose settled and sophisticated civilization in
places like Chaco Canyon and Mesa Verde collapsed around 1300.
Conquistador Juan de
O–ate claims the future New Mexico as a Spanish colony,
establishing its first capital at San Gabriel, near San Juan
Pueblo. O–ate's trek from Mexico City to New Mexico follows a
path now known as El Camino Real, or The Royal Road. An estimated
40,000 to 50,000 Indians live in New Mexico at the time.
After years of
economic exploitation and religious suppression, inhabitants of
nearly all pueblos join in the "Pueblo Revolt" against the Spanish.
The insurrection, which succeeds in driving out the Spanish for
about 12 years, is lead by Pope from the San Juan Pueblo. In 1692,
the Spanish launch their "reconquest" of New Mexico. Some Indians
stage a second pueblo revolt in 1696, but without widespread
participation, the effort fails.
Land-ownership disputes over Texas
prompt the U.S. to declare war against Mexico in 1846. After two
years of hostilities, U.S. troops march into Mexico and force the
country to sign the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which gives the
U.S. control of what is now Arizona, California, Texas and New
After about 50
years as a territory, New Mexico becomes the 47th U.S. state. The
action follows an earlier effort to pursue a joint statehood with
Arizona, which was voted down by residents of the Arizona territory
court declares that Native Americans should be allowed to vote in
New Mexico elections. Although Indians could vote in national
elections beginning in 1924, New Mexico officials had argued that,
because Indians were not taxed, they could not vote in state
Pueblo begins bingo operations.
Gov. Gary Johnson OKs
gaming compacts, based on the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act,
which gives the state authority to license and regulate casino
gambling on tribal lands. Johnson's action is subsequently
challenged in court, but later ratified by the state Legislature.
Richardson is elected governor of New Mexico. Richardson, a former
U.S. congressman who represented the northern half of the state and
also served as United Nations ambassador and Energy secretary under
President Clinton, defeated another Hispanic candidate, Republican
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