New Mexico State Library

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New Mexico’s Past in Print

Newspapers are essential research resources for everyone from genealogists to professional researchers. Besides helping us with historical facts, they provide a snapshot of cultural views at a specific time in a specific place.

The Southwest Collection at the New Mexico State Library holds thousands of rolls of microfilm of New Mexico newspapers dating from the territorial period of the 1850s to the present. If you aren’t in Santa Fe, the State Library will loan another library up to 3 reels of microfilm per request for 15 days. Please contact your local library to initiate your request. Librarians at the New Mexico State Library are also available to help answer your research questions. Get in touch with us at Ask a Librarian or at 505-476-9702.

If you want to find out more about the history of forest firefighting we recommend reading The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America by Timothy Egan and Forty Years a Forester by Elers Koch

In 1907 The Gila National Forest was established as a protected National Forest. Noted conservationist Aldo Leopold encouraged the further preservation of the forest as wilderness, and in June 1924 the 558,065 acre Gila Wilderness was created. The Gila Wilderness Area was the world’s first designated wilderness and is New Mexico’s largest wilderness area.

Here are a few reading recommendations for those interested in immersing themselves in this beautiful New Mexico landscape: Fire Season: Field Notes From a Wilderness Lookout by Philip Connors, Hiking New Mexico’s Gila Wilderness: A Guide to the Area’s Greatest Hiking Adventures by Bill and Polly Cunningham, and Gila compiled by Michael P. Berman.

Happy researching and let us know if you have any reading recommendations to add!

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