Santa Fe Living Treasures – Elder Stories

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Stanley and Rose Mary Crawford

Honored June 2012

Stanley and Rose Mary Crawford

You'll see them most Saturdays at the Santa Fe Farmer's Market, selling garlic, spinach, and shallots—smiling as they greet loyal customers and fellow growers. Stan and Rose Mary Crawford are the hard-working farmers—and writers—of El Bosque Garlic Farm in Dixon. They have been a big part of the farmer's markets in Northern New Mexico for some 30 years.

Stan led the Santa Fe Farmer's Market Board of Directors from 1984 to 1998. His help in securing a grant to study a permanent market location, along with meetings with officials in Washington, DC, led to the local farmer's market receiving federal funds to locate permanently in the Santa Fe Railyard. His books Mayordomo and A Garlic Testament have given readers insights into the ditch (acequia) system, water management, and farming traditions in Northern New Mexico.

In addition to farming, Rose Mary has been an artist in the schools in Peñasco, Dixon, and Las Cruces. She has written, directed, and produced plays with students of all ages, as well as worked as an actor and poetry instructor. Rose Mary, a native of Australia, traveled to England at age 21. She worked as a secretary, then journalist, and later a film publicist who entertained the likes of Marlon Brando and Frank Sinatra in London.

Stan was born in San Diego. At the University of Chicago, he studied the Great Books curriculum. After graduation, he studied French in Paris, taught English in Colombia, then returned to the U.S. to earn a master's degree at University of California, Berkeley. He was living abroad, writing fiction, when he met Rose Mary in Crete in 1967.

They were married in Athens. In their travels, they met "colleagues in exploration," including the American creator of the Whole Earth Catalog. The Crawfords returned to San Francisco, then found their land in Dixon in 1969. "I adored it on first sight," Rose Mary said. They built their adobe home by hand, started a garden, raised two children, and participated in farmer's markets in Taos, Los Alamos, and Santa Fe.

From chef/author Deborah Madison: "In addition to his contributions as a farmer, writer and visionary, Stan endures—he continues year after year to write and to farm." Stan's approach to life, he says, is through discipline and patience. Rose Mary's philosophy is "live in the day." They carry on with farming, writing, teaching, and community commitments—stewards of the land and its heritage.


Story by Barbara Harrelson

Photo © 2012 by Genevieve Russell