Santa Fe Living Treasures ‚Äď Elder Stories

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Dorothy McKibbin

Dorothy McKibbin

"GATEKEEPER" OF LOS ALAMOS

Honored September, 1984

Dorothy McKibbin

Dorothy McKibbin appears on the cover of the Living Treasures book. Her wonderful smile gives us a warm greeting to this marvelous visual and literary collection.

As scientists from all over the free world poured into New Mexico in 1943 to work on the Manhattan Project, each and every one of them passed through the office, at 109 Palace Avenue, of Dorothy McKibbin. Traveling under assumed names, weary, bewildered, often with no idea where they were headed, they were grateful for her welcome and the yellow map, and the reassuring words, "Only thirty-five miles to go." With an exquisite combination of tact, intelligence, loyalty, hospitality, humor and motherly warmth, she served as "gatekeeper to Los Alamos." Throughout her life she maintained many close friendships with those she helped orient "to the Hill." More than twenty Los Alamos couples were married in her house on Old Santa Fe Trail.