Author Archives: Dennis Daily

New Photograph Donations

We are always excited to hear from folks, both near and far, who have historical materials related to southern New Mexico and the border region and are interested in donating to our collections. Some people are surprised to learn that nearly everything in our extensive holdings of archival records (about 25,000 linear feet) came to us as…
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C.H. Tyler Townsend – Early Swashbuckling Professor 

The University Archives here in the NMSU Library contain some real gems of the early history of the college. These include papers of early administrators (most notably founder and first president Hiram Hadley), manuscript minutes of the earliest meetings of the Board of Regents, real estate deeds and records on the initial land acquisitions for the college, and an…
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Keith Wilson: A Desert Voice

I write down the words I hear, but I know it is the Dead who speak them.             Keith Wilson (1927-2009) from “The Voices of My Desert”             While Dancing Feet Shatter the Earth             (Utah State University Press, 1978) [In recognition of National Poetry Month, we have a guest…
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RamĂłn OrtĂ­z and Mesilla’s Beginnings

You know how sometimes you’re looking for one thing, but you end up finding something else? It’s usually that way when I’m looking for batteries around my house. When I’m looking for the AAs, I find the 9 volts. When I need a 9 volt, I only find the AAAs. But on some rare occasions you find…
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Picacho Oil and Gas: The Story behind a Picture

One of the great photograph collections in our archives is the Rives Studio photographs. The studio was started by Harold L. Rives in 1935 primarily as a portrait studio, but Rives did a lot of contract work as well. Harold Rives was originally from Kentucky and his wife, Helen, was from Pennsylvania. They were married in 1920 and moved to…
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When Planets Align

Like many people around the world, last night I took my family out to view the great conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn, affectionately being called the Christmas Star. Even though it wasn’t a spectacular visual display (as one member of my family said, “All I see is two little dots of light”), we all felt that we were in the presence of something…
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Lee Myers’ Hurley Scrolls

I’m sure you’ve heard of the Dead Sea Scrolls. And you may know that scrolls of papyrus, parchment or paper were the standard method of storing texts for many early civilizations. The famous library at Alexandria is said to have held as many as 400,000 scrolls in its collection. Well, as a writing format, scrolls aren’t as popular…
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Maude McFie Bloom Manuscripts Added to ASC

One of the treasured and often-cited sources on the early history of our region is the thesis written by Maude Elizabeth McFie to obtain her bachelor of science degree, in 1903, from the New Mexico College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts (now NMSU). In writing her thesis, “A History of the Mesilla Valley,” Maude McFie…
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Durango Microfilm Collections

As we conduct our virtual reference services in Archives and Special Collections (ASC), under the restrictions the COVID-19 virus has placed upon us, we’ve been receiving a large number of requests for scans from our Durango Microfilming Project resources. With Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15 – Oct. 15) geting underway, it seems like a good time to…
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Early College Scrapbook Donated to Archives

The treasures in the Archives and Special Collections (ASC) nearly all have come to the NMSU Library through generous donations from residents of southern New Mexico. We are always seeking relevant research collections – manuscripts, family papers, records, photographs, films, audio materials and other primary source documentation – that fill in details of our region’s history. We want to collect records that…
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