Sandoval Signpost


An Independent Monthly Newspaper Serving the Community since 1988
  Real People

Reggie Briggs

Reggie Briggs passed away on July 28, 2012,  after a long illness.

She was a longtime resident of Placitas until moving to Ajo, Arizona, in 2002.
She touched the lives of many people and will be dearly missed by family and friends

State signs agreement with Jemez Pueblo

—Loie Fecteau

On July 19, leaders of the Department of Cultural Affairs, the Museum of New Mexico Board of Regents, and the Pueblo of Jemez signed a historic Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to jointly manage Jemez State Monument in Jemez Springs. The signing ceremony took place at the Museum of New Mexico Board of Regents meeting at the New Mexico History Museum in Santa Fe.

This agreement brings a new level of responsibility and participation to the Jemez State Monument, the site of the prehistoric village of Giesewatowa, one of the many villages where the Towa-speaking Jemez people lived in the 1300s.

In the 1620s, Spanish priests began building the San Jose de los Jemez Mission Church. The ruins of this church are prominent at the site, while the Giesewatowa Pueblo is mostly unexcavated. A recent survey found that Jemez State Monument is the third most-visited of the seven state monuments, behind Lincoln and Coronado. 

New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) Cabinet Secretary Veronica Gonzales commented, “This is an historic moment for the State of New Mexico and the Jemez Pueblo. Negotiations with Governor Madalena have been a distinct pleasure and honor, and we are thrilled by the opportunity for collaboration, joint management, and the engagement of Jemez leadership in such a significant cultural site in New Mexico.”

Joshua Madalena, Governor of Jemez, stated, “The people of Jemez are committed to the preservation of our cultural identity. We are honored to return to a leadership role in preserving Giesewatowa as an important link to our ancestral heritage.” 

“We are proud to enter into this historic partnership with Jemez Pueblo,” Regents President Karen Durkovich said, “and we look forward to renewed energy and spirit in programs taking place at the site.”

Monuments Director Richard Sims added, “It is a deeply meaningful event when a heritage site can make strong connections with the very people who are the proud caretakers of that heritage.”

In the spirit of collaboration, this new partnership will lead to a joint management plan between DCA through the State Monuments Division and the Pueblo of Jemez. The MOU formalizes collaboration and understanding between parties to develop new exhibits and cultural presentations, cultivate a community support group and a volunteer and docent program, and create educational outreach programs for Jemez schools, Sandoval County, and the entire region. Economic benefits of cultural tourism will be realized. Tourists will have the opportunity to take scheduled tours of Jemez Pueblo, visit the exciting Walatowa Visitors’ Center and Museum—administered by the Jemez people—as well as view the dramatic ruins of the centuries-old village and mission at the state monument in Jemez Springs.

Jemez State Monument has been nominated for National Historic Landmark status. It was listed in the State Register of Cultural Properties in 1969 and in the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.

The Department of Cultural Affairs includes the Historic Preservation Division, the New Mexico State Monuments, the New Mexico Museum of Art, the Museum of International Folk Art, the Museum of Indian Arts & Culture and the New Mexico History Museum/Palace of the Governors in Santa Fe; the Museum of Natural History & Science, and the National Hispanic Cultural Center which are both in Albuquerque; the New Mexico Museum of Space History in Alamogordo; and the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces. The department also administers the Office of Archaeological Studies, New Mexico State Library, New Mexico Arts, and the Center for Museum Resources.

Top of Page

Ad Rates  Back Issues  Contact Us  Front Page  Up Front  Animal News   Around Town  Sandoval Arts   Business Classifieds  Calendar   Community Bits  Community Center  Eco-Beat  Featured Artist  The Gauntlet Health  Community Links  Night Sky  My Wife and Times  Public Safety  Real  People  Stereogram  Time Off  Youth