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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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Storytelling and Memory-Gathering Under Quarantine

Storytelling and Memory-Gathering Under Quarantine

Recently, Governor Michelle Grisham issued a state-wide ‘stay-at-home’ order, to help flatten the curve of the COVID-19 pandemic, closing the schools that remained open and most workplaces. Chances are, if you and your family were not already sheltering in place at home, you are now. This is a novel situation for most of us, enforced isolation during the day. While at the beginning it may seem like there are endless things to do, movies to watch, social media to surf,…

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Questa Women’s Tea 

Questa Women’s Tea 

Event description: Questa Stories hosted a “Women’s Tea: a story sharing afternoon” on Saturday, Nov 16, 2019, at La Sala in Questa, NM. We collaborated with Esther Garcia* as our event co-host, an active community member and former Mayor of Questa. During her tenure as Mayor she had hosted a women’s gathering and was struck by the outpouring; women embraced the opportunity to come together in celebration. This event stayed with her and inspired her suggestion of a Women’s Tea. Together…

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Ay Mi Corazon – Lávate las Manos

Ay Mi Corazon – Lávate las Manos

Bien dice el dicho que una mano no se lava sola. It is true what is said, that one hand washes the other and now, more than ever that practice is imperative. This saying is also one that is evoked to recognize that we need each other, particularly in moments like this. As a part of the Manitos Community Memory Project, we asked Dr. David Garcia, one of our key partners, to help us create a hand washing song for…

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Manito Reflections — The Archive of Time, Place, People & Story

Manito Reflections — The Archive of Time, Place, People & Story

The Manitos Community Memory Project is an initiative to establish a community-based archive, grounded in the living culture of the villages of northern New Mexico, southern Colorado and the diaspora intricately connected to this region. The project was launched with support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The following essay is a reflection of the first phase of the project, what was accomplished, what was learned and what is envisioned for its future.

A Hidden Gem in Albuquerque

A Hidden Gem in Albuquerque

As New Mexico’s governor undertakes to improve our state’s educational system, understanding the winding road that has taken us to the present day becomes both more relevant and timely. Education history is an important topic we hope to incorporate into the Manitos Community Memory Project digital archive. Remembering can also provide cultural and historical context for these latest educational reform efforts. An important part of educational history for Manitos is the missionary efforts of Presbyterians, especially women, who raised money…

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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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