El Camino Real

I started the day out early this morning swapping out the thermostat on the truck. It’s at the end of the intake hose to the engine (the cooler of the 2 hoses from the radiator when the engine is running and the thermostat is open). 2 bolts to get the housing off the engine, and the thermostat swapped.

It was snowing. We did a compressed air test on the coolant system, and there is at least one leak at the intake manifold. I didn’t have time to fix it – a 3 hour job. It was going to start to snow, and with the expected temperature drop to 0 F in Santa Fe, the temperature would have been lower tonight in Los Alamos, unsurvivable. I left with the new thermostat, pleased that everything seemed stable temperature-wise on the engine, and that I had heat. I stopped for a couple of hours to visit the Gutierrez-Hubbell House – a former station that has been restored on El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro.

The house represents a stop about 100 miles from the end of the 1600 mile old royal road from Mexico City to San Juan Pueblo 25 miles north of Santa Fe.

El Camino Real was established by Don Onate in 1598 when he left his birthplace of Zacatecas, Mexico, to explore and colonize New Mexico for Spain after Coronado’s initial conquest in 1540. Onate married the granddaughter of Hernando Cortes (also the great granddaughter of Aztec emperor Moctezuma Xocoyotzin). He later left with 175 soldiers to take New Mexico for Spain establishing El Camino Real on his route, and the San Juan Pueblo as the capital of the new province of Santa Fe. This route would be the main artery through New Mexico for 300 years until the railroad was established in 1885. In good weather, caravans would travel 10-12 miles a day, making the first 600 miles of the trip Zacatecas-El Paso a 2 month journey. Later, they would traverse La Jornada del Muerte – The Journey of Death – a 90 mile waterless stretch to get to Socorro, and then up through Albuquerque to Santa Fe..During the first 100 years of the road’s existence, about 2000 colonists settled New Mexico (refs. http://www.caminorealheritage.org/PH/1105_elcamino1.pdf, http://www.caminorealheritage.org/PH/1205_elcamino2.pdf) mostly around Santa Fe (an agglomeration of pueblos known to exist from 1000 but colonized by the Spanish through New Mexico’s 3rd Spanish governor Peralte by 1608. Peralte made Santa Fe a capital of the province established by Onate. After about 100 years, in 1706, Albuquerque was established as a military fort along the route. When the Mexicans declared independence from Spain in the Mexican War of Independence (1810-1821), the area became Mexican. It was finally purchased by the United States with California and Texas (1846-48) through the treaty at Guadelupe Hidalgo.

A Nicho for the Saints
The house itself is 150 years old with 28 inch adobe walls and pine vigas supporting a 10 foot ceiling, built almost 15 years after New Mexico’s independence from Mexico in 1848 while the US was fighting a civil war, and the Navaho and Mescalero Apache were being moved to Fort Sumner. Although the initial land grant was purchased as 40 000 acres, at one point in the mid-1800’s holding as many as 103 000 sheep, by 1927 the house sat on 130 acres of land that raised sheep and grapes for wine (ref. http://www.hubbellhousealliance.org/history.html). The hacienda, in addition to managing the ranch and farm, also served as a carriage stop, post office, trading post, and probably an inn. Today, grape vines grafted from the original vineyard populate the 10 acre 16 room homestead, as well as apple trees and blackberry vines.

There is an Osage Orange tree in the front yard, said to be the best trees for making bows and arrows, and the fruit reported to have been eaten by native wild horses.

Later, I crossed the street. After a 1 hour walk with the dogs down to the river through Rio Grande Valley State Park,



when I got back in the car, the thermostat was again malfunctioning. I opened the hood, the coolant was again low and leaking, and I noticed a disconnected hose.

So, 2 hours of excellent function, and now almost back to where I was before.

I visited the Isleta pueblo, but could not find water there. The town of Bernanillo is on the banks of the Rio Grande, so there is a big water source next to the pueblo, but not really in the Pueblo.

Were these 2 pueblos related- Isleta and Ysleta?

Translation of the day

My version:
“The Pueblo Indian Experience

Throughout the 1300s, this area of the middle Rio Grande valley was populated by Pueblo Indians of the southern Tiwa language group. Around 1675, the people of the cercana sierra … and the pueblos of Quaray, Tajique, and Chilili were displaced by the Apache Indians and a severe drought. These pueblos of the Manzano sierra were also tiwas and many of their families came to the Isleta pueblo.

The Pueblo Indians were expert agriculturalists of the arid land of New Mexico. They excavated irrigation canals to raise the water to the campsites. Corn, the principal crop, had been adapted to the difficult climate and could be easily stored. Beans and squash were also communal food.

During the August 1680 rebellion of the pueblos, the indigenous people reclaimed their sovereignty over the Spanish colonizers. There had been periods of relative peace among the Spanish Mexican and native peoples, but this was followed by economic deterioration and religious persecution that caused the rebellion. Under the leadership of Pope of the pueblo of Ohkay Owingeh, Santa Fe fell and the refugees escaped to El Paso. The indigenous pueblos controlled the area for 12 years until Diego de Vargas marched to Santa Fe and reclaimed control for Spain in 1692.”

The Translated Version

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