New Mexico Quick Facts|
New Mexico State Capitol
New Mexico State Seal
Piñon - The State Tree of New Mexico
Roadrunner - The State Bird of New Mexico
Yucca - The State Flower of New Mexico
The State Song of New Mexico
New Mexico's Flag - The yellow field and red symbol colors are the colors of Spain. First brought to New Mexico by Spanish explorers in 1540. On New Mexico's flag we see a red sun with rays streching out from it. There are four groups of rays with four rays in each group. This is an ancient sun symbol of a Native American people called the Zia. The Zia believed that the giver of all good gave them gifts in groups of four. These gifts are: The four directions - north, east, south and west. The four seasons - spring, summer, fall and winter. The day - sunrise, noon, evening and night. Life itself - childhood, youth, middle years and old age. All of these are bound by a circle of life and love, without a beginning or end.
History of New Mexico - - Francisco Vásquez de Coronado, a Spanish explorer searching for gold, traveled the region that became New Mexico in 1540–42. In 1598 the first Spanish settlement was established on the Rio Grande River by Juan de Onate; in 1610 Santa Fe was founded and made the capital of New Mexico. The U.S. acquired most of New Mexico in 1848, as a result of the Mexican War, and the remainder in the 1853 Gadsden Purchase. Union troops captured the territory from the Confederates during the Civil War. With the surrender of Geronimo in 1886, the Apache Wars and most of the Indian conflicts in the area were ended. Since 1945, New Mexico has been a leader in energy research and development with extensive experiments conducted at Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory and Sandia Laboratories in the nuclear, solar, and geothermal areas. Minerals are the state's richest natural resource and New Mexico is one of the U.S. leaders in output of uranium and potassium salts. Petroleum, natural gas, copper, gold, silver, zinc, lead, and molybdenum also contribute heavily to the state's income. The principal manufacturing industries include food products, chemicals, transportation equipment, lumber, electrical machinery, and stone-clay-glass products. More than two-thirds of New Mexico's farm income comes from livestock products, especially sheep. Cotton, pecans, and sorghum are the most important field crops. Corn, peanuts, beans, onions, chilies, and lettuce are also grown. Tourist attractions in New Mexico include the Carlsbad Caverns National Park, Inscription Rock at El Morro National Monument, the ruins at Fort Union, Billy the Kid mementos at Lincoln, the White Sands and Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monuments, and the Chaco Culture National Historical Park.
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