Santa Fe Living Treasures ‚Äď Elder Stories
Born in 1916 and reared on a ranch in the Black Forest area near Colorado Springs, she earned two degrees in European history at the University of Colorado, then taught history in the public schools of Pueblo for ten years.
"I can't remember when I wasn't interested in history of some sort," she said. "My grandfather had brought across from England a set of English history books. I used to sit upstairs at the farm and pore through them by the hour." After earning her Ph.D. at the University of New Mexico's Latin American Institute, she worked for the Museum of New Mexico. In 1960 it fell to her to order the chaos of state historical documents. She rescued such priceless papers as the 1695 journals of Don Diego de Vargas, which had suffered water damage under a leaky roof in the Palace of the Governors.
"The first job was to clear out every cubbyhole, nook, and cranny of the old Roundhouse," she said. "Many documents had been put out for wastepaper."
Photo ¬©1997 by Joanne Rijmes
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