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Angostura del Pecos Grant

by J. J. Bowden

Jose Manuel Sanchez, for himself and on behalf of 53 other landless persons, registered a tract of vacant land on September 4, 1842, which was situated near the junction of the Pecos and Gallinas Rivers and known as the Angostura del Pecos. Their petition was addressed to the Alcalde of San Miguel del Vado and described the tract as being bounded:

On the north, along the Juan Estevan Pino Grant; on the east, the Sabino Springs; on the south, the Painted Cottonwoods; and on the west, the Anton Chico Grant.

Alcalde Vincente Rivera referred the petition to the Prefect at Santa Fe, Diego Archuleta on October 4, 1842, with a report in which he stated while the lands were vacant he knew that they were susceptible to cultivation. He also advised the Prefect that the applicants were industrious persons who needed the lands to support their families. Six days later, Archuleta directed Rivera to place the applicants in possession of the tract if he was sure no third person would be injured thereby.1]

It appears that the petitioners were placed in possession of the tract and a colony known as Nuestra Senora del Rosario de la Angostura was established shortly thereafter near the junction of the two rivers. The settlement was also known as the Town of Angostura del Pecos. On January 28, 1843, Geronimo Gonzales received an allotment of 400 varas of land within the grant from Rivera.2]

The inhabitants of the Town of Angostura del Pecos filed a petition in the Surveyor General’s Office seeking the recognition of their grant on January 28, 1856. Four years later, Gonzales petitioned that office for the confirmation of his title. Since the Angostura del Pecos Grant primarily covered the same area embraced within the disputed area of the Preston Beck and Anton Chico Grants, the Surveyor General was reluctant to act on the claims.

After the Preston Beck and Anton Chico Grants were approved by Congress,[3] the owners of the grant lost interest. With no one to actively prosecute the claims, they became dormant and were never acted upon.


[1] . The Angostura del Pecos Grant, No. F‑23 (Mss., Records of the S.G.N.M.). 

[2] The Geronimo Gonzales Tract, No. F‑76 (Mss., Records of the S.G.N.M.). 

[3] An act to confirm certain private land claims in the Territory of New Mexico, Chap. 167, 12 Stat. 71 (1860).