Artesia Museum and Art Center

Artesia-Museum-Moore_Ward_HouseThe Artesia Museum and Art Center is housed in the Moore-Ward House, which was built about 1906 and is an unusual example of a cobblestone facade. The museum came into being as a result of the 1968 bequest of the building by the S. S. Ward estate and the decision of the City of Artesia to support the museum as part of the city government. The Museum opened in 1970.

The museum focuses on the history of Artesia and its surrounding area which is known for oil and gas and dairy farming, and more recently, for its Federal Law Enforcement Training Center. At the museum, you’ll learn about these activities as well as stories about the nitroglycerine plant and local refineries. There is a children’s activity area. Behind, the Moore Ward House, there is a building that houses their collection of vehicles. The Museum has always had an active program of community activities, art shows and traveling exhibitions offered in the Art Annex, another old house next door. The activities and programs outgrew the Art Annex and it was torn down to make way for a new multi-use facility which opened in 2015.

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Address: 505 West Richardson Avenue, Artesia, NM 88210
Phone: 575-748-2390
Hours: 9:00–12:00 and 1:00–5:00, Tuesday–Friday; 1:00–5:00, Saturday
Website: http://artesianm.gov/154/Museum-Art-Center
Admission: No charge

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The Route 66 Auto Museum

Front sign - Route 66 Auto MuseumThe Route 66 Auto Museum celebrates the car culture that developed along Route 66. The highway originally ran from Chicago, Illinois, through Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico and Arizona before ending in Los Angeles, California. It ran for 2,448 miles.

Santa Rosa’s stretch of Route 66 is part of film history. When John Steinbeck’s novel, “The Grapes of Wrath,” was made into a movie, director John Ford set a train scene in Santa Rosa. Tom Joad (played by Henry Fonda) watches a freight train steam over the Pecos River railroad bridge, into the sunset.

Route 66 served as a major path for those who migrated west, especially during the Dust Bowl years of the 1930s. People doing business along the route became prosperous due to the growing popularity of the highway, and those same people later fought to keep the highway alive in the face of the growing threat of being bypassed by the new Interstate Highway System.

Route 66 was officially removed from the United States Highway System on June 27, 1985, after it was decided the route was no longer relevant and had been replaced by the Interstate Highway System. Portions of the road that passed through Illinois, Missouri, New Mexico and Arizona have been designated a National Scenic Byway with the name “Historic Route 66.”

At the Santa Rosa Route 66 Auto Museum, you can see more than 30 vintage cars, including shiny classics from the 50s, as well as hot rods and chrome. The Museum museum opened in 1999, is run by James “Bozo” and Anita Cordova. It is attached to Bozo’s Garage where you can have a car restored or just have a car fixed. Route 66 memorabilia and signs cover the walls and the gift shop is a nostalgic treat.

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Address: 2766 Will Rogers Drive (Historic Route 66), Santa Rosa, NM 88435
Hours: April to October: Monday through Saturday, 7:30 a.m to 6 p.m., Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
November to March: Monday through Saturday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.,  Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Website: www.route66automuseum.com
Admission: Adults, $5

Lewis Antique Auto and Toy Museum

Lewis-Car-MuseumLocated along old Route 66, the Lewis Antique Auto and Toy Museum shows off Archie Lewis’ collection of cars, toys, trains – even old stoves that he has amassed over sixty years of collecting. He moved out to Moriarty from the East Mountains outside of Albuquerque a dozen years ago, so he would have the space to spread out. Inside his warehouse, there are about 30 restored antique cars and a vast array of toy cars, Lionel trains, and other toys. In the yard surrounding the warehouse, there are about 600 more, give or take, unrestored cars. You’ll see lots of Model A and Model T Fords and other old cars and trucks of every make and model. The museum is open most of the time and Archie Lewis is usually there to welcome visitors.

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Address: 905 U.S. Route 66 East, Moriarty, NM 87035
Phone: 505-832-6131
Hours: Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, noon to 3 p.m.
Website: On Facebook
Admission: Donations appreciated.

 

 

The Museums at Ghost Ranch

Ghost_Ranch_SignWhen most people think of Ghost Ranch, they think of Georgia O’Keeffe. But the area also is notable for archaeology and paleontology, and Ghost Ranch has two museums devoted to those topics.

GR-Anthro-MuseumThe Florence Hawley Ellis Museum of Anthropology is named for Dr. Florence Hawley Ellis, who worked for more than 20 years at the University of New Mexico and led anthropology courses and fieldwork in the Ghost Ranch area from 1970 through 1991. The museum highlights 12,000 years of habitation of the Gallina-Chama-Rio Grande drainage, as well as contemporary work by American Indian, Hispanic, and Anglo artists of the area. The museum also has an active exhibition schedule of contemporary artist’s work.

The Ruth Hall Museum of Paleontology was named after the Ruth Hall. She was the wife of Jim Hall, the first resident director of Ghost Ranch. The Ghost Ranch area had of interest to paleontologists since the 19th century, and the 1947 discovery of a massive graveyard of Coelophysis fossils put Ghost Ranch on the map. The Coelophysis is the state fossil of New Mexico, and research is still being conducted on the area’s fossils. The museum has exhibits of various dinosaurs found in the region, including a fossil that is being removed from rock for visitors to see.

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Location: 1708 Highway 84, Abiquiu, New Mexico
Phone: 877-804-4678 or 505-685-1000
Hours: Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, 1 to 5 p.m. Closed most days from Christmas Eve to New Years Day. Call to verify hours.
Website: http://www.ghostranch.org
Admission: Adults:  $4, Children: $2 (13 and under), Seniors: $3 (65 and older)
Website: www.ghostranch.org

While at Ghost Ranch, you can hike, take a workshop, stay for Hogans at Ghost Ranchthe night, or stay for a retreat. All of the information about available activities other details are posted on the website.

Lea County Museum

Lea_Co_Museum_SignThe Lea County Museum was created by the Lovington Women’s Club in 1969. That’s when the club purchased the Commercial Hotel, which was about to be razed. The Commercial Hotel was built in 1918 by a group of Lovington ranchers and businessmen. Since 1969, the Museum has acquired several more buildings — some, like the Baker School building were moved to their site. And others, are commercial buildings put to new use, like the Lister Building across the street from the Hotel. Continue reading