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Welcome to the Manitos Digital Resolana

Welcome to the Manitos Digital Resolana

The Manitos Digital Resolana is a virtual gathering space for manitos, as people from rural northern New Mexico and southern Colorado call themselves. In many villages throughout this region, the resolana is the sunny side of a building, where people congregate to converse and share knowledge and wisdom. This Digital Resolana will serve as a space for people from these rural communities and their urban diasporas, where people connected to these villages now live, to reconnect, recollect, record, and reflect…

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HIPÓLITO ESPINOSA – And the Old Spanish Trail

HIPÓLITO ESPINOSA – And the Old Spanish Trail

Imagine that this is how it must have looked when, in the Fall of 1842, 19 New Mexican families gathered along the Chama River in the grassy fields below Abiquiu. They would be the first colonist settlers to set forth on the Camino de California or the California Road – later to become known as The Old Spanish Trail. CAYETANO HIPÓLITO DE JESUS ESPINOSA, our great, great, grandfather, had recruited family and friends from El Rito and the surrounding region with the offer of free land in California, and he would help lead them to their new promised land. This is his story of how this all came to be.

A Reunion in the Mountains

A Reunion in the Mountains

On a stormy summer Saturday in July, I was privileged to bear witness the first ever Costilla/Amalia Community Reunion. This event, years in the making, brought together the extended community of Costilla, NM and Amalia, NM, neighboring villages in the northernmost reaches of the New Mexico mountains, for a celebration of their shared history. The reunion was to my eyes a resounding success. Attendance was in the thousands and it was remarkable to see the strength of family and friendship…

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Community Cuentistas – Mapping the Storytellers in Juan B. Rael’s ‘Cuentos Españoles de Colorado y Nuevo Mexico’

Community Cuentistas – Mapping the Storytellers in Juan B. Rael’s ‘Cuentos Españoles de Colorado y Nuevo Mexico’

One of the core lessons I learned from my grandmother was that the best storytellers are those that have mastered the ability to lean in and to listen. In this, I think of the work of now renowned linguist and folklorist, Juan Bautista Rael. As a native son of the region, he had no doubt been raised on stories, however, in the summer of 1930, he returned home, freshly minted with a Master’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley….

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Manit@ Migrations Stories

Manit@ Migrations Stories

Since we first launched this project, we have begun to hear remarkable stories of the migrations of manitos and manitas. We have also begun to gather data from families in order to more fully visualize these journeys, exploring when people left and where their travels took them. Over the course of this project, we will dedicate a blog entry to as many stories as we are able to gather. Please return to the site to read as we continue to…

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Seiscientas Millas Manitas Diary

Seiscientas Millas Manitas Diary

Linguist, Len Nils Beké, is traveling 600 Manitos Miles by bicycle, mapping and documenting place names of the Manitas and Manitos homeland, and their stories. Follow along and connect with Len as he sends us updates from the road!

Independence Day – Imagining the Nation, in Questa, New Mexico

Independence Day – Imagining the Nation, in Questa, New Mexico

Recently, I came across a couple of photos taken of a Independence Day Parade in my home village of Questa, from circa 1935, which led me to reflect about this commemoration. It is interesting to reflect on this celebration of Independence Day (4th of July) for a mountain village that had been settled by Mexican citizens after Mexican Independence and before the U.S.-Mexican War that resulted in the annexation of the northern portion of Mexico. Questa, which was actually founded…

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The Manito Topos Project

The Manito Topos Project

Len Nils Beké is a doctoral student in in Hispanic Linguistics at the University of New Mexico. In the Manito Topos Project, Len has embarked on an initiative focused on the recovery of Nuevomexicano Spanish place names. This week, he also launches his fieldwork expedition, which he has called Seiscientas Millas Manitas (600 Manito Miles).

Rural Libraries as Sites for Community Memory

Rural Libraries as Sites for Community Memory

There’s something magical about entering rural libraries. They are warm and inviting community spaces crammed with books. Like their urban counterparts these small but mighty institutions are taking on new roles in the digital world. Computer terminals provide connection to all kinds of online information and are collecting points for community memory. The first computerized system to use the term “Community Memory” was invented in Berkeley in 1973. It was a simple electronic bulletin board that allowed users to send…

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RECONCILIATION

RECONCILIATION

The IAIA Museum of Contemporary Native Arts (MoCNA) opened, Reconciliation. The exhibition responds to last year’s ending of “La Entrada” as part of the Santa Fe Fiestas and using artistic expression, adds to the ongoing dialogue of the astonishing complexity of being and belonging to this place we now call New Mexico.

Dancing Her-Story

Dancing Her-Story

In this post, we reveal how there are many ways to tell a story. In this instance, we share how a memory that is passed from generation to generation is taken up by the writer, who inspires the choreographer. Each telling building upon the last, developed to sustain the power of memory and history.