Where is CARRIZOZO, New Mexico and why is there a place in town called the Tularosa Basin Gallery of Photography?
CARRIZOZO, is located in Lincoln County, New Mexico in the southeastern part of the state, at the junction of US Highway 380 and US 54. Like so many other features in the area, this settlement, now the county seat of Lincoln County, was named for Carrizozo Springs, a water source, about 2 miles north of the town, and it was originally called Carrizozo Flats, or simply Carrizozo ((carrizo( being Spanish for (grass() when founded in 1899 as a new town by the El Paso & Northeastern Railroad. About 1907, when the town was finally platted, James Allcook, foreman of a local cattle ranch, added the second zo ( to Carrizozo, the extra syllable being added to indicate an abundance of grass for cattle. Another account says W.C. McDonald, a prominent local rancher & later New Mexico's first Governor, urged the railroad to change the name to Carrizozo.
The El Paso and Northeastern Railroad Company was chartered on June 5, 1896. It was built to connect El Paso, Texas to other railroads, giving El Paso a commercial link to larger cities as far away as Chicago. In 1905 Phelps, Dodge, a mining company, acquired EPNR, to transport minerals, mostly copper and some gold, to industries throughout the country. Located with water and coal nearby, Carrizozo became an important supply link for the railroad and especially for the ranchers and farmers in the surrounding area.
Our gallery takes its name from the surrounding Tularosa Basin, one of the largest completely enclosed water basins in the United States. A basin formed millions of years ago as the surrounding mountain ranges emerged from the sea.
From Carrizozo, you can see the Sacramento Mountains, the largest mountain range in southern New Mexico, home to five majestic and climbable peaks: Sierra Blanca at 11,981 feet , Nogal Peak at 9,957 feet , Carrizozo Peak at 9,605 feet, Capitan Peak at 10,201 feet, and Vera Cruz at 8,333 feet.
At the crossroads of HWY 380 and HWY 54 - two of the older roads within the state servicing travelers from all directions (North, East, West and South.
Gateway to all the recreational activities in the area (skiing, hiking, horseback riding and golfing to name a few. Nearby is the Valley of Fires, a lava flow roughly 40 miles long and 5,000 years old. Also not to be missed is the Three Rivers Petroglyph Site which contains roughly 25,000 petroglyphs created by the Mogollon People who lived in this area more than 600 years ago.
Home to an established and growing arts community featuring over 20 artists and photographers as well as Historic 12th Street where several art galleries can be found.
Carrizozo is located south of the East-West Line that bisects New Mexico. The Northern portion of the state has the big cities, the vast majority of the state(s population and all the frenzy that comes with that. The Southern portion of the state has wide open spaces, big ranches, the White sands, warmer climate and a more friendly and relaxing pace of life.
Find out more about Carrizozo!
Carrizozo Chamber: http://www.carrizozochamber.org
Carrizozo Works: http://www.carrizozoworks.org
Read all about Carrizozo & the Gallery in the
August issue of New Mexico Magazine