by John Parker
December 3rd, 2006
An enchanting land of inspired legends about nature’s spirit and the passions of its people.
New Mexico offers visitors endless opportunities to connect with its heritage, history, and an artistic legacy that spans from ancient times when life’s images were imprinted on pottery and cave walls, through to modern times where contemporary styles are displayed in traditional motifs. Monuments that commemorate important times and events and museums dedicated to 21st-century passions, along with that artistic legacy are just a few ways to connect with New Mexico’s culture and heritage.
The New Mexico State Monument System has capsulated the state’s history by visiting various locations honoring important times and events in its history. The time span begins with the ancient pueblo sites of Jémez and Kuaua.The newest addition to the monument system, Camino Real International Heritage Center, celebrates the significance of this route which has been followed from the first Spanish exploration through to modern times.
Coronado State Monument at Bernalillo is the site of pueblo of Kuaua established in 1300 A.D. and abandoned at the end of the 16th century. Named for Francisco Vásquez de Coronado, who is believed to have camped in the area in 1540 while searching for the fabled City of Gold, the monument has an interpretive trail to a reconstructed Kuaua kiva and visitor center. There are fifteen display panels that show the original kiva pre-contact mural art depicting daily life of the Kuaua people and animals. Other exhibits display the cultural artifacts of the Native Americans and the Spanish colonists.
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