Mike Lord

Mike Lord

4th generation Santa Fe Gringo.

For years I've been looking for a photograph of the Fischer Brewery and have just discovered two.  This photo is of the entertainment side, with the bowling alley, salon and outdoor porch.  The brewing was done in the 2 story building just visible to the right.  It is credited to Adolph Fischer and, based on the Sanborn 1902 map description 'Dilapidated, being used as a residence' I would estimate the date between 1902 and 1906, when it was demolished to make room for the Renehan's Willows.  It must have been a Santa Fe hotspot, a rural retreat where one could have a beer overlooking the Santa Fe river, listen to live music and bowl in what I believe was Santa Fe's first bowling alley.

Photo by Adolph Fischer


Friday, 13 April 2012 15:48

Automobiles and The Willows

The automobile arrives in Santa Fe.

From The Santa Fe New Mexican
July 14, 1908:

Attorney A.B. Renehan has joined the ranks of the automobile
enthusiasts by investing in a handsome four-cylinder Ford Model S
roadster. The machine arrived this week from Denver and Mr. Renehan is
now getting next to its intricate workings under the tutelage of Earl
Mayes, a professional chauffeur and local agent for the Ford. Mr.
Renehan will now be able to travel to and from his
beautiful suburban home, "The Willows," much more conveniently.

Here's a 1908 Ford Model S Roadster.  Imagine it chugging up East Palace Avenue.


From The Santa Fe New Mexican
April 18, 1910

While attempting to scale one of the 'peaks' a half mile or more
behind the home of A.B. Renehan, to show off the climbing powers of his
automobile, Frank Owen had a narrow escape from serious if not fatal
injuries yesterday afternoon. His car turned turtle and he saved
himself by a magnificent vault just in the nick of time. With him but
several minutes before Mr. Owen took the leap were Dr. J.M. Diaz, who
is one of the greatest auto enthusiasts in the territory, A.J. Griffin
and J.H. Walker. They made a rapid descent from the car before it
turned turtle and in order to save it if possible from attempting the

Friday, 13 April 2012 00:47

Marietta and Alois Renehan - 1922

Since I've been talking about my Great-grandmother and step Great-grandfather, I'd like to introduce them to you.

Thursday, 12 April 2012 18:38

The Fischer Brewery

Alois and Marietta Renehan's home, the Willows, was built on the site of the Fischer Brewery.  The brewery was established in the 1880s (it appears on the Birds-Eye View of Santa Fe in 1882) and was closed in the late 1890s.  Alois bought the property and the 1902 Sanborn map lists it as "Dilapidated, used as a residence."  In its heyday, it boasted a performance stage, a beer garden and a bowling alley.

In 1894, Rudolph Eickmeyer wrote in his book "Letters From The South-West" about the brewery.

"Palace Street is the Fifth Avenue of Santa Fé.  Most of the stylish residences line its sides; but a little distance from these I made a discovery.  To see the city, you generally go over to the west side of the Santa Fé River, drive up the valley through the Mexican town, and return by Palace Street, after crossing to the east side of the river on a bridge.  Well, one day we made this trip, and when within a half mile of the stylish part of the street we discovered on our right a sign with the legend "Santa Fé Beer Garden."  We stopped, of course, and found ourselves in the Fatherland.  Tables under the trees and a jolly fellow-countryman of mine ready to serve his customers with pure Santa Fé lager and real St. Louis pretzels.  When he brought the lager, however, I was both astonished and amazed.  You have, no doubt, seen in Yonkers, in front of the establishments where the juice of King Gambrinus is flowing, a sign with the picture of a tumbler of huge size, saying, "Schooners, five cents."  But even the schooners there offered to the thirsty are not to be compared with those of Santa Fé.  I could account for it in but one way, namely, the climate here is exceedingly dry, and to moisten the throat it takes a large quantity of fluid.  In all my travels I have never met as good measure, except in the Hofbräu, in Munich, Bavaria, where his Royal Highness the King furnishes his thirsty subjects with lager at so much a "stein."

My Great-grandfather, Charles N. Lord, was the Secretary of The Board of Dental Examiners for the Territory.  Here's his report to the Governor, shortly before his divorce from my Great-grandmother.

Thursday, 12 April 2012 01:33

729½ East Palace Avenue 2011

729½ East Palace Avenue today.  The only thing remaining of Alois and Marrieta Renehan's Willows is the wall by the sidewalk.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012 16:02

The Willows

729½ East Palace Avenue.  Built on the site of the Fischer Brewery in 1908.  The Willows was where my Great-grandmother Marietta and Alois Renehan took up residence after they were married in 1909.

Photo by Jesse Nusbaum, 1911

Tuesday, 10 April 2012 16:52

The Renehan Mausoleum and the Black Kiss



Decades-Old Tomb Bears Mystery of the Black Kiss

COPYRIGHT 2000 Albuquerque Journal

Byline: Joseph Ditzler Of the Journal

It may be the quietest pair of lips ever, those imprinted indelibly on the tomb of Alois Renehan.

A distant descendant, Edward Renehan, 44, of Newport, R.I., said it has been there as long as he can remember a life-sized kiss, in black, on Alois's mausoleum in Fairview Cemetery on Cerrillos Road. If you know where to look, you can see it from the street a black spot on the right side of the doorway into Alois Renehan's tomb.

Unlike the lips of a corpse, these lips have never spoken. And who may have left this peculiar bit of graffiti, and for what reason, are unknown.

Alois Renehan, however, is not.

Monday, 09 April 2012 17:08

Palace of the Governors Photo Archive


Monday, 09 April 2012 17:06

New Mexico Office of the State Historian


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