Mike Lord

Mike Lord

4th generation Santa Fe Gringo.

Sunday, 20 May 2012 17:47

Toonerville Trolley: Mystery solved

From the New Mexican, August 2, 2009

Last month, the Museum of New Mexico asked readers if they recognized anyone in this photograph by Santa Fe photographer T. Harmon Parkhurst, which is drawing attention in the New Mexico History Museum.

Turns out the photo is of the Studebaker entry in a 1929 fiesta parade that was published in the New Mexican on Oct. 2, 1929.  The Historic Santa Fe Foundation found the original story in its fiesta files.

The paper identified the people in the photo, left to right, as:  Mrs Margery Wilson, George Gormley (adjusting the trolley), Joe Schultz (perched on the rear platform), Mrs. John March (in the first window), Mrs Martin Gardesky (in the comfortable leaning pose), Mrs. Christine Gormley (in window No. 2), Mrs. DeForest Lord (in No. 3), Jane Bigelow (in Dana Johnson's Mexican sombrero), Norman Magee (with the parasol and ringmaster whiskers) and Mrs. Margery Bigelow (spurning his advances).  The two youngsters are George March and Sarah Bigelow.  On hands and knees is "Duke" Bigelow, who from a cockpit inside the car navigated the bus.  In the vestibule are Glenn Brill, Mrs. Jeanette Schultz and the skipper, Agustus "Gus" Wilson.

The caption said the photo will appear in the Studebaker News, the national house organ of Studebaker.  The trolley, according to the caption, was built on a Studebaker chassis.

In this photo are my Grandfather DeForest Lord's first wife (Lucille - my Grandmother) and his soon to be second wife (Jeanette.)  Lucille moved back to Chicago after they divorced in 1930.

Correction:  Arthur Seligman Scott (Pete) has identified the woman in the first window as Franc E. Seligman, wife of Governor Arthur Seligman, not Mrs. John March.

Photo by T. Harmon Parkhurst


NMHM No. 117681

--Mike Lord

Friday, 18 May 2012 16:00

Lynch Law in Las Vegas - 1882

This poster is no joke.  The law was sparse and none too effective in the Territory during the 1880s and vigilantes often took justice into their own hands.  The following is from Miguel Antonio Otero's autobiography "My Life on the Frontier."

"On the same day that witnessed Judge Prince's resignation (June 9, 1882), James McHan, a good-natured half-wit employed on the railroad at the Pecos River crossing, was being mercilessly ridiculed by a fellow employee, John Graves.  Graves, as well as other section hands, had become accustomed to tantalizing the ignorant McHan on every conceivable occasion.  Probably they derived some kind of imaginary amusement from seeing the poor imbecile writhe under their tongue lashing.  McHan, aroused to the point of insanity,  suddenly drew a gun and fired point-blank at Graves, who dropped dead at his feet.

McHan immediately struck out for the mountains, followed by twenty members of an impromptu deputy sheriff's posse.  He was captured and placed under guard.  Shortly before midnight of that same day a mob of forty enraged section hands, who had been friends of Graves, made an armed attack upon McHan's protectors, wresting their victim from them.

Half dragging, half carrying the seventeen-year-old McHan to the railroad trestle east of the Pecos yards, they strung him to one of the cross-ties.  Once again, a man had gone to oblivion via the 'Rope Route.'"

Here's a link to the stonemasons who recently restored the cross and entrance stonework on St. Francis Cathedral.


This photograph illustrates how the Cathedral was built around La Parroquia.  I'm looking for the photographer and date, so if anyone can help, please post.  I would estimate the date to be the late 1870s - early 1880s.

Photographer and date unknown.

Friday, 04 May 2012 17:28

La Parroquia

La Parroquia, the Catholic Parochial church, was built in 1714 - 1717 on the site of an even earlier church that was destroyed in the Pueblo Revolt of 1680.  In 1869, Archbishop Jean Baptiste Lamy began the construction of Saint Francis Cathedral.  In order to not disrupt services, the Cathedral was built around La Parroquia, which remained in use until construction was completed in 1889.  The old church was then dismantled from the inside and the rubble was used on Santa Fe's streets.  The only remaining part of La Parroquia is the small Chapel of Our Lady, home of La Conquistadora, located on the north side of the Cathedral.

Photo by Nicholas Brown


--Mike Lord

Friday, 04 May 2012 16:09

The Stone House at #12 La Vereda

In the late 1940s, my parents bought this house from my Great-grandmother, Marietta Renehan for $8,000.  We lived there until 1955 and I spent my early years roaming the hills above La Vereda.  I have always wondered about its origin, and the only thing I've found is that it may have been the main building of the Fischer Brewery.  I don't believe this to be the case, since the house is above and behind the brewery site and does not appear on city maps until after the brewery was demolished in 1906.  I asked my mom about it, and she said that she had heard that it was built by an old Italian stonemason who had worked on the Cathedral.  He also built all of the original stone walls on La Vereda and had built a second stone house somewhere in Santa Fe.  Since the Cathedral was completed in 1889, it is conceivable that the house could have been built by "an old Italian stonemason" after the brewery was gone.

I recently found the obituary of Joseph Anthony Berardinelli, Jr. which included the following:

"Joseph was a descendent of one of the oldest and best known Italian families in Santa Fe. Joseph's Great Grandfather, Gaetano Palladino, and his wife, Filomena Digneo Palladino, arrived in Santa Fe in 1877 where Gaetano and his nephew, Vicente Digneo, resumed stone masonry work on the Basilica Cathedral of Saint Francis at the request of Archbishop Jean Baptiste Lamy after the departure of his French stone mason, Antoine Mauly. They were later joined by Joseph's Grandfather, Michele Berardinelli, who married Gaetano's eldest daughter, Guilia Palladino Berardinelli. Michele and Guilia had eight children, Margarita (Maggie), Peter, Edward, Federico, Sophia, Annie, Michael had Joseph Berardinelli, Sr. The Palladino-Digneo-Berardinelli stone masonry firm prospered after completion of the Basilica Cathedral, going on to construct many New Mexico landmark buildings in the late 1890's and early 1900's. Among the many historic stone buildings worked on by Gaetano Palladino and Michele Berardinelli were the Archbishop's burial crypts under the high altar at the Basilica Cathedral, the Catron Block occupying the Northeast corner of the Santa Fe Plaza, Santa Fe's Guadalupe Church, the original dam in the Santa Fe water shed canyon, Hodgin Hall, the first unit of the University of New Mexico, original buildings for the Normal School in Las Vegas (now Highlands University), original buildings for Socorro's School of Mines, the original Bernalillo County Courthouse, the ornate brownstone Nicholas T. Armijo building in Albuquerque, and many of the brick homes along South Don Gaspar Avenue which is designated on the historic 1900 King Survey as "the Berardinelli Addition." The historically designated "Michele Berardinelli Building," constructed by Michele as his residence in the 1890's, still stands at 644 Don Gaspar Avenue."

The Palladino-Digneo-Berardinelli stone masonry firm could have very well built this house and the original walls at La Vereda.

If anyone has any additional information about the house, please post.

Photo by Mike Lord

September, 2011


Tuesday, 01 May 2012 23:58

Exchange Hotel Demolition, 1919

From the Santa Fe New Mexican, May 9, 1919

The fighting tank from France which helped boost the Victory Loan over the top in Santa Fe and which has been shipped back east, created a sensation when it easily walked through the ancient but massive adobe ruins of the old "Fonda" or Exchange Hotel of the early days.  The tank also did a spectacular stunt in climbing the heights of old Fort Marcy.

"Mud Puppy," caterpillar, battle-scarred warrior from the fight, has left Santa Fe after crushing his last wall, downing his last tree, and leaping over his final ditch in the final drive for the last of the Liberty loans.

"Mud Puppy" and his crew, headed by Sergeant Weaver, left yesterday for the east, after receiving a warm welcome from the citizens of Santa Fe.  The little tank's tour during the past three weeks through Kansas, Colorado, and Northern New Mexico was one long demolition.  The tank first aroused curiosity, then amazement and finally enthusiasm - enthusiasm for the Victory loan.

Captain St. James of Telluride, Colorado, and Captain Parker, the one armed hero of the Argonne, accompainied the tank as orators.  Sergeant Weaver and Privates Mackenzie and Hamilton were the tank's crew of three who had charge of "every little movement" of this 7 ton "caterpillar," with its marvelous hill-climbing and handicap-overcoming machinery.  MacKenzie or Hamilton sat day after day in the driving compartment directing the curious craft over embankments, through old houses and against trees.  Sergeant Weaver managed the tour which was made on a special train composed of a flat car, a Pullman, and a chair car.  This train, known as the "Victory Loan Special," was met in Trinidad, Colorado last Saturday by a delegation from Santa Fe representing the ten northern counties of New Mexico in the loan drive.  The delegation was headed by Governor Larrazola and District Judge Holloman.

"Mud Puppy," camouflaged in yellow, blue, and purple, its curious coat unchanged except by the wear and tear of the elements since it advanced against the terrified Hun in the Argonne, everywhere was a drawing card.  Thousands saw the little steel jacketed fellow climb and whirl about in Las Vegas, in Raton, as well as in Santa Fe.  There were hundreds also in Wagon Mound to greet the tank.

Just as "Mud Puppy" figured prominently in the drive in the Argonne woods to vanquish the Huns, so the little fighter has also done good work in another drive, the drive for billions to float the last loan to bring the American fighters home again.

"Mud Puppy's" work is done, and mounted on a flat car the tank is now speeding to the east to receive the thanks of Washington's officials.

Photo from the Adella Collier collection

Photographer unknown

Before Statehood was finally achieved in 1912, the Territory maintained an active Bureau of Immigration whose purpose was to entice United States citizens to emigrate and thus convince Congress that New Mexico could govern herself.  The Bureau was located in Albuquerque and, in 1909, issued this flyer extolling the opportunities available in New Mexico.

Attached is an excerpt from a draft National Register nomination on La Bajada by David Kammer (2002.)  It is one of the best histories of the road I've seen.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012 19:30

San Marcos Pueblo

The Galisteo Basin, just east of Santa Fe, New Mexico, is home to thousands of years of human occupation and was the site of significant ‘cultural contact’ between native Pueblo Indians and Spanish colonizers. San Marcos Pueblo was one of the largest Pueblos in the Southwest (approximately 2,000 rooms) in the 15th and 16th centuries. By the early 17th century, Spanish Jesuits began construction of a mission inside the Pueblo. The mission began in several converted pueblo rooms, but eventually grew into a large two story adobe church and 18-room convento, complete with priests’ quarters, offices, reception area, and kitchen. The mission lasted for approximately 70 years, until the Pueblo Revolt of 1680 resulted in the priest’s deaths and the abandonment of the mission. Unlike other Southwestern missions, however, San Marcos was never re-occupied by the Spanish and remains an important ‘time capsule’ for archaeological research

Dave Thomas

In 1996, an extensive aerial mapping was done of the pueblo.  The attached file has a wealth of drawings, surveys and maps of the site, which is 15 miles southeast of Santa Fe on NM 14.

Map of the Galisteo Basin Pueblos

Map from "Ancestral Pueblo Warfare and Migration
in the Galisteo Basin, New Mexico:
Report of the Tano Origins Project,
2005 Season"

James E. Snead
Dept. Of Sociology and Anthropology
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA 22030-4444
8 June 2006

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