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Title: El Velador del Cañon de Abo

Author(s): Eliseo R. Sisneros (Author); Shawn Kelley (Oral Historian); William Penner (Editor)

Eliseo R. Sisneros talks about working for the Santa Fe Railway in eastern New Mexico.

One night there was a rock come down in Abo Canyon and it hit the electric warning fence and knocked a hole in it. They called the Belen Section and couldn’t find a foreman. So I went up there with the assistant foreman and a bunch of men to help t...

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Title: Life At the Sais Crusher

Author(s): Bill Huckabay (Author); Shawn Kelley (Oral Historian); William Penner (Editor)

Bill Huckabay talks about life at the Sais Crusher where his father worked for the railroad overseeing quarry operations.

My dad was working as civil engineer for the railroad, and it was his job to make sure the contractor was doing what they were supposed to do at the crusher. My friend Albert McNeil’s dad (Louis McNeil) was the superintendent for the contracting co...

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Title: Wherever The Work Took Us, That’s Where We Went

Author(s): Randy Dunson (Author); Shawn Kelley (Oral Historian); William Penner (Editor)

Randy Dunson talks about growing up on the Belen Cutoff and the experiences his father, a track supervisor for the Santa Fe Railway in eastern New Mexico, had with Navajo work gangs.

The first eight years of my life were spent in a 40-foot wooden boxcar converted for living quarters. Up and down the Belen Cutoff; just wherever the work took us that’s where we went. I made every school between Clovis and Belen, except Yeso. We w...

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Title: Settlement and Homesteading in East-Central New Mexico

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight; William Penner

A brief history of settlement and homesteading in east-central New Mexico.

New Mexico’s population grew during the nineteenth century. Hispano families began to settle beyond the Rio Grande Valley and establish new villages. Some communities obtained land grants from the Spanish or Mexican governments; others settled with...

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Title: You Fed Them And You Fed Them Well

Author(s): Martina Brazil Franklin (Author); Shawn Kelley (Oral Historian); William Penner (Editor)

Martina Brazil Franklin remembers her father, a prominent local sheepman, and growing up in the village of Scholle, New Mexico.

My father Joe Brazil came to this country from the Azore Islands when he was 16. His father had preceded him and gone to California. My father came with a sister, Maria, and two brothers and they went on to California and lived there for a long time....

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Title: They Used To Steal The Comanchita And Take Her To One Of The Reyes’ Houses

Author(s): Polly Sisneros (Author); Shawn Kelley (Oral Historian); William Penner (Editor)

Polly Sisneros recalls the dances and religious celebrations and ceremonies that occurred in Scholle and the surrounding areas.

They used to have parties! That was a party town. Oh my God! My dad worked in this pool hall. That’s how come we came to Scholle, because Mr. Brazil wanted my dad to manage the pool hall. They used to have the dances there on a big ol’ patio be...

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Title: The Railroad Made It, And The Railroad Destroyed It

Author(s): Bill Pohl (Author); Shawn Kelley (Oral Historian); William Penner (Editor)

The railroad is what made this country. It revolutionized the world, especially the United States, and every part of it, everywhere it went. Well, the people that were here before the railroad came, undoubtedly it made the world smaller for them, bu...

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Title: Scholle: A Portrait of a Railroad Community

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight; William Penner

A brief history of Scholle, New Mexico, a railroad community on the Belen Cutoff.

Many communities in east-central New Mexico are relatively new when compared to those in the Rio Grande Valley and other parts of the state. When the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railway constructed the Belen Cutoff, it opened an area for settleme...

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