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Recent News and Announcements

New Mexico Listens: Old Roots, New Routes

Sat, Feb 19, 2022, 10:00am

This event will be hybrid in-person and offered on Zoom on February 19, 2022 at 10am.  Register for the Zoom event by clicking here. What is your story behind your family’s route and journey...

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New Mexico Listens: Santa Fe Stories You've Never Heard

Sun, Feb 6, 2022, 7:00pm

This event will be hybrid in-person and offered on Zoom on February 6, 2022 at 7pm.  Register for the Zoom event by clicking here.  St. John's Methodist Gathering Room 1200 Old Pecos Trail, Santa...

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Indigenous AI

Tue, Dec 28, 2021, 12:00am

This month we’re talking with Michael Running Wolf (Northern Cheyenne, Lakota and Blackfeet), who is a former engineer for Amazon’s Alexa, and is an instructor at Northeastern University. He was raised with a grandmother who only spoke his tribal language, Cheyenne, which like many indigenous languages is near extinction. By leveraging his advanced degree and professional engineering experience, Michael hopes to strengthen the ecology of thought represented by indigenous languages

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1 Dec 2021

Introducing a free resource for classroom teachers, librarians and individuals to reflect on the personal impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, while exploring archival information about the Spanish Flu pandemic and its impacts in northern New Mexico. The deluxe package includes a boxed set of four issues with stickers and a bookmark with prompts for reflection.

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2021 NHD Theme: Communication in History

2021 NHD Theme: Communication in History

2022 Theme: Debate & Diplomacy in History: Successes, Failures, Consequences

25 Jul 2021

Every year, National History Day frames students' research within a historical theme. The theme is chosen for the broad application to world, national or state history and its relevance to ancient history...

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Pasa Por Aquí - Open Call for Submissions

27 Jan 2021

The New Mexico Humanities Council is seeking contributors for its new blog! Let us take this opportunity to introduce Pasa Por Aquí – the NM Humanities Council’s...

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Recent Columns

Credit: Creative Commons photo of MLK

The Last MLK Day

Sat, Jan 1, 2022, 12:00am | By Hakim Bellamy

“On August 6th, 1965, the President’s Room of the Capitol could scarcely hold the multitude of of white and Negro leaders crowding it. President Lyndon Johnson’s high spirits were marked...

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New Mexico's State Cookie:  The Biscochito

New Mexico's State Cookie: The Biscochito Credit: Photo Courtesy by Vanessa Baca

A Sweet and Spicy Memory: Biscochitos in New Mexico Culture

Wed, Dec 1, 2021, 6:52pm | By Vanessa Baca

In my memory, I am standing next to my grandmother, watching her roll out the dough, deliciously studded with tiny seeds of anise. I have the very important job of cutting the dough into the shapes of...

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Addie Card, 12 years. Spinner in North Pormal [i.e., Pownal] Cotton Mill. Vt.

Addie Card, 12 years. Spinner in North Pormal [i.e., Pownal] Cotton Mill. Vt. Credit: Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, National Child Labor Committee Collection, Reproduction Number: LC-DIG-nclc-01830 February 1910

Instrument of Change: A Brief Look at Photography in the United States

Wed, Dec 1, 2021, 6:34pm | By Mathew Contos

Some of the earliest photographs in history captured the brutality of war, a major departure from the heroic and romantic stylization of battle paintings that preceded them. Photographs of the Mexican-American...

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Fort Cummings in 1867, home to some of the first African American troops in New Mexico

Fort Cummings in 1867, home to some of the first African American troops in New Mexico Credit: Parker, William Thornton. Annals of Old Fort Cummings. 1916. published by the author, Northampton, MA.

1867: A Snapshot of the Military Occupation of New Mexico

Mon, Nov 1, 2021, 3:54pm | By Ellen Dornan

The 1867 U.S. Topo Bureau map showing the Old Territory and Military Department of New Mexico, “compiled in the Bureau of Topographic Engineers of the War Department chiefly for military purposes under...

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Credit: Unknown author; Public Domain; "Annie" daguerreotype of Poe circa 1849 jpg; originally from http://www.getty.edu/art/gettyguide/artObjectDetails?artobj=39406

Beyond the Macabre: Edgar Allan Poe and the Psychology of Horror

Tue, Sep 28, 2021, 2:22pm | By Chrysta Wilson

Edgar Allan Poe’s status as the father of contemporary horror is so fully entrenched in the American psyche that his portrait is instantly recognizable to people who have never read his work.

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The author’s personal altar with paper flowers, candles, autumn leaves and food items. In the center is a drawing of the author’s sister Christel Angélica  Chávez, Captain U.S. Air Force. Drawing by Anthony Thielen (cousin).

The author’s personal altar with paper flowers, candles, autumn leaves and food items. In the center is a drawing of the author’s sister Christel Angélica Chávez, Captain U.S. Air Force. Drawing by Anthony Thielen (cousin). Credit: Photo Courtesy by Nicolasa Chávez

Celebrating the Dead: Día de los Muertos and All Hallowe’en  

Tue, Sep 28, 2021, 2:05pm | By Nicolasa Chávez

Many people do not know the origins of this fun - and fright-filled night, nor of the similarities its’ origins share with Día de los Muertos

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Scene at Signing of the Constitution of the United States.

Scene at Signing of the Constitution of the United States." Credit: Howard Chandler Christy, 1940

America’s Constitution: A Machine That Does Not Run By Itself

Wed, Sep 1, 2021, 9:28am | By Christian Fritz

When the Founding Fathers drafted America’s frame of government in Philadelphia during the constitutional convention of 1787, they knew they had begun a journey and not completed a task. By creating...

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Seeking to understand
Who we were
Who we are and
Who we aspire to be

We seek out, fund and conduct quality humanities programs for presentation to public audiences throughout the state. We support a wide variety of programs, projects and organizations-- topics can range anywhere from local history and culture to international affairs. Explore our website to learn how we support public programs in New Mexico communities which inspire inclusive conversations that strengthen our civil society and celebrate diverse human experiences. 

Statement on Diversity and Inclusion from the New Mexico Humanities Council 

1 Jul 2020

“Seeking to understand who we are, who we were, and who we aspire to be.” This statement is more than a pithy tagline for the New Mexico Humanities Council; we actively seek to provide New Mexicans with opportunities to cultivate mutual understanding and respect through its programming and grants.

Over the past weeks and months, our nation has experienced tremendous upheaval, particularly in response to the persistence of individual, institutional, structural, and systemic racism in our society.  In the interest of addressing these social barriers, the New Mexico Humanities Council pledges to continue to develop, nurture, and fund programs and grant partnerships that use the tools of history, ethics, literature, and the examination of the arts to bridge gaps of culture, knowledge, and experience between New Mexicans.  Our aim is to help each of us determine who we aspire to be both as individuals and members of larger communities. By helping to build these bridges of understanding and respect, we hope to play our part in working towards a more just society. 

In the past year, we partnered with representatives from diverse communities to amplify the many voices and perspectives that make up New Mexican society.  Some examples of this collaborative work include:

  • 400 Years (1619-2019): Knowing our African American Past and Creating our Future, an art exhibit and discussion program that brought together artists and community members to discuss the resiliency of the African American community in the wake of the 400th anniversary of the arrival of ships carrying enslaved Africans to America (with the New Mexico African American Artists Guild). 
  • Bright Spaces, Welcome Places, a community-created art exhibit and public programs celebrating lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, nonbinary, and queer resiliency and health (with Fierce Pride). 
  • A concert and post-performance discussion led by the members of the Pakaraguian Kulintang Ensemble, which preserves the ancient Filipino musical tradition of kulintang (with the Filipino American Community Council).

While we are proud of the work we have done, the current moment demands reflection on what more we can do.  In addition to continuing the cultivation of community partnerships alongside our funders and collaborators, the New Mexico Humanities Council is committed to creating and supporting opportunities and spaces for dialogue and expression.  Please join us as a donor, partner, scholar, or engaged citizen in the important and meaningful work of building a better New Mexico.  Don’t hesitate to contact Brandon Johnson (bjohnson@nmhumanities.org; 505-633-7376) to talk about how you’d like to be involved.  We look forward to hearing from you!

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