No constitution no statehood, for New Mexico it was as simple as that. The procedures and requirements for United States Territories to gain admittance to the Union derive from the Northwest Ordinance of 1787, which was an act of the Congress operating under the Articles of Confederation of the United States that created a formally organized territory out of an area northwest of the Ohio River. According to the precedent established by the Enabling Act of 1802, Congress had to pass such an act before admission of a territory to statehood.
The Southwest was settled with Spanish subjects emigrating northward from the interior of Mexico contemporaneous with the colonization of the Atlantic seaboard by the English. A liberal land grant policy was necessary to induce emigrants to move to the hostile and arid frontiers of New Spain. Therefore, most of the desirable land had been appropriated under grants from the Spanish and Mexican governments by 1843. The United States was presented with a formidable challenge under the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo and Gadsden Treaty to investigate the claims presented to it and to confirm the valid ones. This study traces the history of the United States’ effort to solve this peculiarly complicated problem and the fulfillment of its solemn treaty obligations.
Watch videos and listen to audio. Topics include growing up in Cochiti, Haak’u describes the transition from the past to the urban present, the traditions and culture of Nambe Pueblo are revealed through the life and biography of Rose “Alice” Baca, and more.
New Mexico is known as the Land of Enchantment for its picturesque and dramatic landscapes, its deep and rich history, and the diversity of peoples who have called it home. Yet anyone who has spent time in the Land of Enchantment knows that it is also a land of contested pasts, and that New Mexicans are no strangers to the power of history to tell us who we have been and who we are today. This Story Map chronicles the experiences of Japanese Americans in New Mexico just before, during, and after World War II.