The Aztec Museum and Pioneer Village was established in 1974 to preserve stories from Aztec, a town founded in 1887, and the surrounding area. The main museum once served as the Aztec City Hall and Fire Station. After you go downstairs in the main building, you will step out into the Pioneer Village – a collection of 12 buildings, some of which were moved to the site. The buildings include an old jail, a print shop, a church, a log cabin, a blacksmith’s shop, a bank and a post office.
The town of Aztec has been a center of New Mexico’s oil and gas business since 1901. In 1921, Aztec became New Mexico’s first town to use natural gas in homes and businesses. The museum has working oil-drilling equipment and rigs, including a rig called a Ft. Worth Spudder. In 1967, this type of rig was used in Project Gasbuggy in the Jicarilla Ranger District of the Carson National Forest – an attempt by El Paso Natural Gas, the Bureau of Mines and the Atomic Energy Commission to use a nuclear explosion to stimulate the extraction of natural gas.
The museum also features displays of antique telephone equipment, mining tools, minerals, rocks and fossils, historic clothing and early farming and dairy equipment.
The Museum’s annual report video for 2013 shows the wide variety of services and contributions that the museum makes for the community of Aztec.
A walking tour guide for Aztec is available on line or at the Aztec Ruins National Monument or at the Museum. The Aztec Museum Association is also sponsoring a large mural project in Aztec.
Address: 125 N. Main Avenue, Aztec, New Mexico 87410
Hours: Summer: May – September, Tuesday – Saturday, 10 am – 4 pm.
Winter: October – March, Museum is closed. The museum is closed for National Holidays.
Admission: Adults $3.00, Children $1.00