Spanish Colonial Period

Explore the Spanish Colonial time period


1540 Francisco Vázquez de Coronado
Francisco Vázquez de Coronado arrives in New Mexico in the Summer of 1540 at the head of an expedition consisting of about four hundred Spaniards and from 1,300 to 2,000 Indian auxiliaries. He remains in New Mexico until the Spring of 1542.

1598 Spanish Colonization of New Mexico
Juan de Oñate leads the Spanish colonization of the province of New Mexico. He establishes his first capital in San Juan de los Caballeros at the confluence of the Rio Grande and Chama River.
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1610 Official founding of Santa Fe
Governor Pedro de Peralta formally founds Santa Fe, moving the second capital of New Mexico from San Gabriel to the site of the new town.

1680 Pueblo Revolt
On 10 August 1680, the united Pueblo people carry out a general rebellion that drives the Spaniards out of the New Mexico colony eighty-two years after they settled there.
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1692 Spanish Recolonization of New Mexico
Diego de Vargas leads a ceremonial reconquest of New Mexico in 1692. The following year Spanish colonists resettle New Mexico after a dozen years in exile in El Paso del Norte.

1706 Founding of Alburquerque
On 10 March 1706, Interim Governor Francisco Cuervo y Valdés officially founds Alburquerque. He takes the name from the Viceroy of New Spain, Francisco Fernández de la Cueva Enriquez, Tenth Duke of Alburquerque.

1776 Domínguez-Vélez de Escalante
Two Franciscans, fray Francisco Atanasio Domínguez and fray Silvestre Vélez de Escalante, seek an overland route from Santa Fe to Monterey, California, exploring much of the Four Corners area of New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, and Arizona.

1786 Peace between Spaniards and Comanches
Governor Juan Bautista de Anza and Ecueracapa, leader of the Cuchanec band and spokesman for all the Comanches, conclude a peace treaty that establishes a peace lasting almost thirty-five years until the advent of Mexican independence.
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1807 First Exploration of New Mexico from United States
Zebulon Montgomery Pike leads an exploratory expedition to the Southwest to map the Red River. He and his party are captured in what was then northern New Mexico and taken to Santa Fe and Chihuahua before being released.

1821 Mexican Independence
Mexico wins independence from Spain in the spring of 1821, but the news does not reach Santa Fe until December when all local government officials swear allegiance to Mexico.

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