Santa Fe Living Treasures – Elder Stories

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Arthur "Curly"L. Welsh


Honored May, 2003

Arthur 'Curly' L. Welsh

One of the advantages of living a long, productive life is that Arthur "Curly" Welsh has now devoted a full 25 years to Santa Fe--after 64 previous years of dedication to New Mexico in general, to his hometown of Peña Blanca, to Albuquerque and to his country.

Because the woman who has to become his mother had tuberculosis and her doctors recommended a warm, dry climate, she and her husband moved from Indiana to New Mexico. The "prescription" worked and she was cured; and in 1914 Welsh was born in tiny Peña Blanca, between Santa Fe and Albuquerque. Seeking the best education for their children, his parents moved to Albuquerque; and he graduated from high school there in 1932. He got a fast start in business in Albuquerque, first in banking and then in real estate. But in World War II he joined the Army and served in the Philippines and Japan, while his wife was raising two small children on his corporal's pay.

With a natural love of people and a natural gift for sales, Welsh built an enormously successful real estate agency back home after the war. With his growing prosperity came a deep commitment to give back to the community that was nurturing him. Over many years he served as president of many organizations: the March of Dimes, the Girl Scouts, the Fellowship of Christians and Jews, the Game Protective Association, the Highway 85 Association, the Albuquerque Board of Realtors and the Chamber of Commerce. He was an elder in the Presbyterian Church, and active in the Elks. He was a founder of the Albuquerque Osteopathic Hospital, now Carrie Tingley Hospital.