N
Skip to Content


Visiting Santa Fe

Santa Fe Events Calendar

Thirteen years before Plymouth Colony was settled by the Mayflower Pilgrims, Santa Fe, New Mexico, was established with a small cluster of European type dwellings. It would soon become the seat of power for the Spanish Empire north of the Rio Grande. Santa Fe is the oldest capital city in North America and the oldest European community west of the Mississippi.

historic sites smWhile Santa Fe was inhabited on a very small scale in 1607, it was truly settled by the conquistador Don Pedro de Peralta in 1609-1610. Santa Fe is the site of both the oldest public building in America, the Palace of the Governors and the nation's oldest community celebration, the Santa Fe Fiesta, established in 1712 to commemorate the Spanish reconquest of New Mexico in the summer of 1692. Peralta and his men laid out the plan for Santa Fe at the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains on the site of the ancient Pueblo Indian ruin of Kaupoge, or "place of shell beads near the water."

The city has been the capital for the Spanish "Kingdom of New Mexico," the Mexican province of Nuevo Mejico, the American territory of New Mexico (which contained what is today Arizona and New Mexico) and since 1912 the state of New Mexico. Santa Fe, in fact, was the first foreign capital over taken by the United States, when in 1846 General Stephen Watts Kearny captured it during the Mexican-American War.

Santa Fe's history may be divided into six periods:

Preconquest and Founding, circa 1050 - 1607


Santa Fe's site was originally occupied by a number of Pueblo Indian villages with founding dates from between 1050 to 1150. Most archaeologists agree that these sites were abandoned 200 years before the Spanish arrived. There is little evidence of their remains in Santa Fe today.

The "Kingdom of New Mexico" was first claimed for the Spanish Crown by the conquistador Don Francisco Vasques de Coronado in 1540, 67 years before the founding of Santa Fe. Coronado and his men also discovered the Grand Canyon and the Great Plains on their New Mexico expedition.

Don Juan de Onate became the first Governor-General of New Mexico and established his capital in 1598 at San Juan Pueblo, 25 miles north of Santa Fe. When Onate retired, Don Pedro de Peralta was appointed Governor-General in 1609. One year later, he had moved the capital to present day Santa Fe.

Settlement Revolt and Reconquest, 1607-1692


For a period of 70 years beginning in the early 17th century, Spanish soldiers and officials, as well as Franciscan missionaries, sought to subjugate and convert the Pueblo Indians of the region. The indigenous population at the time was close to 100,000 people, who spoke nine basic languages and lived in an estimated 70 multi-storied adobe towns (pueblos), many of which exist today. In 1680, Pueblo Indians revolted against the estimated 2,500 Spanish colonists in New Mexico, killing 400 of them and driving the rest back into Mexico. The conquering Pueblos sacked Santa Fe and burned most of the buildings, except the Palace of the Governors. Pueblo Indians occupied Santa Fe until 1692, when Don Diego de Vargas reconquered the region.

Established Spanish Empire, 1692-1821


Santa Fe grew and prospered as a city. Spanish authorities and missionaries - under pressure from constant raids by nomadic Indians and often bloody wars with the Comanches, Apaches and Navajos-formed an alliance with Pueblo Indians and maintained a successful religious and civil policy of peaceful coexistence. The Spanish policy of closed empire also heavily influenced the lives of most Santa Feans during these years as trade was restricted to Americans, British and French.

The Mexican Period, 1821-1846


When Mexico gained its independence from Spain, Santa Fe became the capital of the province of New Mexico. The Spanish policy of closed empire ended, and American trappers and traders moved into the region. William Becknell opened the l,000-mile-long Santa Fe Trail, leaving from Franklin, Missouri, with 21 men and a pack train of goods. In those days, aggressive Yankee traders used Santa Fe's Plaza as a stock corral. Americans found Santa Fe and New Mexico not as exotic as they'd thought. One traveler called the region the "Siberia of the Mexican Republic."

For a brief period in 1837, northern New Mexico farmers rebelled against Mexican rule, killed the provincial governor in what has been called the Chimayó Rebellion (named after a village north of Santa Fe) and occupied the capital. The insurrectionists were soon defeated, however, and three years later, Santa Fe was peaceful enough to see the first planting of cottonwood trees around the Plaza.

Territorial Period, 1846-1912


On August 18, 1846, in the early period of the Mexican American War, an American army general, Stephen Watts Kearny, took Santa Fe and raised the American flag over the Plaza. Two years later, Mexico signed the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, ceding New Mexico and California to the United States.

In 1851, Jean B. Lamy arrived in Santa Fe. Eighteen years later, he began construction of the Saint Francis Cathedral. Archbishop Lamy is the model for the leading character in Willa Cather's book, "Death Comes for the Archbishop."

For a few days in March 1863, the Confederate flag of General Henry Sibley flew over Santa Fe, until he was defeated by Union troops. With the arrival of the telegraph in 1868 and the coming of the Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe Railroad in 1880, Santa Fe and New Mexico underwent an economic revolution. Corruption in government, however, accompanied the growth, and President Rutherford B. Hayes appointed Lew Wallace as a territorial governor to "clean up New Mexico." Wallace did such a good job that Billy the Kid threatened to come up to Santa Fe and kill him. Thankfully, Billy failed and Wallace went on to finish his novel, "Ben Hur," while territorial Governor.

Statehood, 1912-present


When New Mexico gained statehood in 1912, many people were drawn to Santa Fe's dry climate as a cure for tuberculosis. The Museum of New Mexico had opened in 1909, and by 1917, its Museum of Fine Arts, today called the New Mexico Museum of Art, was built. The state museum's emphasis on local history and native culture did much to reinforce Santa Fe's image as an "exotic" city.

Throughout Santa Fe's long and varied history of conquest and frontier violence, the town has also been the region's seat of culture and civilization. Inhabitants have left a legacy of architecture and city planning that today makes Santa Fe the most significant historic city in the American West.

In 1926, the Old Santa Fe Association was established, in the words of its bylaws, "to preserve and maintain the ancient landmarks, historical structures and traditions of Old Santa Fe, to guide its growth and development in such a way as to sacrifice as little as possible of that unique charm born of age, tradition and environment, which are the priceless assets and heritage of Old Santa Fe."

Today, Santa Fe is recognized as one of the most intriguing urban environments in the nation, due largely to the city's preservation of historic buildings and a modern zoning code, passed in 1958, that mandates the city's distinctive Spanish-Pueblo style of architecture, based on the adobe (mud and straw) and wood construction of the past. Also preserved are the traditions of the city's rich cultural heritage which helps make Santa Fe one of the country's most diverse and fascinating places to visit.


Search our Calendar

Start Date:
End Date:
Categories:
Keywords:
There are 47 events for July 9, 2020 and 100 ongoing events

« Prev   Next »

Thu., July 9, 2020

Jun 2 - Dec 31, 2020
Daily 8-11am

La Cieneguilla Petroglyphs Hike

Location: 505-988-4000
Event Type: Historical Tours

Learn about the history of the Native American people. Take a walk with us along the basalt rocks on which the Ancient Puebloans left petroglyphs (or rock art). What did these symbols - spirals, Kokopelli figures, serpents - mean?
visit our

Jun 2 - Dec 31, 2020
Daily 8am-5pm

Weekend Scavenger Hunt Adventure- Santa Fe

Location: 805-603-5620
Event Type: Family Activities, Outdoor Adventure, Historical Tours

Participate in this fun Scavenger Hunt adventure in Santa Fe. Bring a team of 2-5 people and see the sights while solving clues, completing challenges and learning local history. Perfect for friends and families. Explore Santa Fe while having funǃ
visit our

Jun 2, 2020 - Feb 28, 2021
Daily 8am-9pm

Private Photo Tour/Workshop with Craig Varjabedian

Location: Eloquent Light Photography Workshops
Event Type: Outdoor Adventure, Workshops & Classes, Historical Tours

This is your opportunity to work one-on-one with an award-winning fine art photographer to continue your personal adventure with photography. Private Photography Tours/Workshops custom planned for your needs & interests. O'Keeffe country, Santa Fe or
visit our

Jun 2, 2020 - May 27, 2023
Daily 8am-10pm

How to Paint a Portrait - 4 hours

Location: 575-404-1801
Event Type: Family Activities, Museum Events, Workshops & Classes

In 4 hours, paint your first portraitǃ Seriously. World Renowned Portraitist Robbi Firestone (www.RobbiFirestone.com) walks you step-by-step through your first face. Beginners or Pros; Leave PROUD & joyful with your first portrait completed face...
visit our

Jul 1 - Dec 31, 2020
Daily 9am-12pm

Native American Ruins - Pecos

Location:
Event Type: Outdoor Adventure, Outdoor Adventure, Historical Tours

Visit Pecos National Historical Park and learn about the rich heritage of the Native Americans as well as the strong influence of the Spanish culture in Northern New Mexico. Call about our winter specialsǃ
visit our

Jun 11 - Aug 3, 2020
Mon
Thu-Sun 9am-3:30pm

2020 Summer Fishing Season

Location: 505-757-7241
Event Type: Outdoor Adventure

Three miles of the Pecos River are available to anglers on a seasonal basis. A special use permit along with a $15 per day per person fee is required. Reservations are required and can be made up to 30 days in advance at www.recreation.gov.
visit our

Jun 19 - Aug 31, 2020
Daily 9am-5pm

Tours, Trail Rides & Day Visits at Ghost Ranch

Location: 505-685-1000
Event Type: Outdoor Adventure

Offered daily; reservations required. Tour the landscape by motorbus or horseback and see the actual locations of Georgia O’Keeffe’s paintings interwoven with stories of her fifty years at Ghost Ranch. Or, come for a day visit to relax and hike.
visit our

through
May 31, 2021
10am

Discovery Walking Tours

Location:
Event Type: Other Events

Historically informed walking tours of Santa Fe. $15, 10 am, 505-577-7645, sfediscoverytour.wix.com/downtown.
visit our
source: Santa Fean Magazine

Jun 2 - Dec 31, 2020
Mon-Fri 10am-12pm

Historic Chili Line

Location:
Event Type: Outdoor Adventure, Historical Tours

Our 2 hour Historic Chili Line tour will take you out to Diablo Canyon, near the Rio Grande River, in our Pinzgauer. Learn about the Denver & Rio Grande Western's so-called "Chili Line", a narrow gauge railroad that ran from Santa Fe to southern CO.
visit our

Jun 4, 2020 - Oct 29, 2020
Thursdays 10am-12pm

The Jewish Legacy in NM: A History Different

Location: 56 E San Francisco St
Event Type: Family Activities, Historical Tours

Original Santa Fe tour with a unique cultural perspectiveǃ Explore New Mexico history and find out how Jews were both Hispanos and Anglos and about the 21st-century Jewish community. $30/pp. Min. $70 Thursdays 10 AM
visit our

Jun 2 - Dec 31, 2020
Tue
Thu 10am-12pm

Yoga in the Gallery

Location:
Event Type: Art Shows, Workshops & Classes, Historical Tours

Like yoga, visual art asks us to slow down & honor the present moment. During this mindfulness practice, contemplate artwork on beautiful Canyon Road. Then, integrate the experience into the body with gentle yogic movements in a serene gallery space.
visit our

Jul 1 - Dec 31, 2020
Mon 9-11am
Wed--Fri
Sun 10am-12pm

Sense of Place Historic Walking Tour

Location:
Event Type: Family Activities, Family Activities, Historical Tours

Please join me as we explore the vibrancy of our Nation's oldest capital city. Learn why our unique culture, art, architecture, history and Native/Spanish heritage make Santa Fe the City Different.
visit our

ONGOING EVENTS

« Prev   Next »   top



Please wait...
yield optimizer