Mora County, New Mexico

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Map_of_New_Mexico_highlighting_Mora_County.png
Image:Map of New Mexico highlighting Mora County.png

Mora County is a county located in the state of New Mexico. As of 2000, the population is 5,180. Its county seat is Mora6.

Contents

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 5,008 km² (1,933 mi²). 5,002 km² (1,931 mi²) of it is land and 6 km² (2 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 0.12% water. The highest point in the county is the summit of Truchas Peak at 13,102'.

Demographics

As of the census2 of 2000, there are 5,180 people, 2,017 households, and 1,397 families residing in the county. The population density is 1/km² (3/mi²). There are 2,973 housing units at an average density of 1/km² (2/mi²). The racial makeup of the county is 58.88% White, 0.10% Black or African American, 1.14% Native American, 0.12% Asian, 0.00% Pacific Islander, 36.97% from other races, and 2.80% from two or more races. 81.64% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There are 2,017 households out of which 31.20% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.50% are married couples living together, 11.90% have a female householder with no husband present, and 30.70% are non-families. 26.90% of all households are made up of individuals and 10.60% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.54 and the average family size is 3.08.

In the county the population is spread out with 26.70% under the age of 18, 7.50% from 18 to 24, 24.30% from 25 to 44, 26.10% from 45 to 64, and 15.40% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 40 years. For every 100 females there are 102.00 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 100.20 males.

The median income for a household in the county is $24,518, and the median income for a family is $27,648. Males have a median income of $24,483 versus $18,000 for females. The per capita income for the county is $12,340. 25.40% of the population and 20.90% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 25.90% of those under the age of 18 and 18.40% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.

History

Prior to Spanish conquest, the Mora area was Indian country. Although not an area of heavy Indian settlement by such tribes as the Pueblo Indians, the Mora valley was much used by nomadic tribes: the Utes, Navajos and Apache. Throughout the 19th century, Indian raids were common. The Mora Valley then became a travel-way for various Spanish explorers and others. It was not settled until the early part of the 19th century. The history of the settlement of Mora dates to 1817 when a group of settlers petitioned for a priest. The next significant event was the Mexican Land Grant in 1835 which gave land to some 25 families. Original grantees of Mora:

  • Jose Tapia
  • Carmen Arce
  • Juan Lorenzo Alico
  • Juan Antonio Garcia
  • Carlos Rinto
  • Mateo Ringinel
  • Manuel Suazo
  • Geronimo Martin
  • Francisco Sandoval
  • Francisco Lara
  • Francisco Coven
  • Jose Maestas Archuleta
  • Antonio Alba Trujillo
  • Juan B. Cruz
  • Maria Dolores Sanches
  • Jose Miguel Pacheco
  • Ildefonso Pacheco
  • Manuel Sanchez
  • Juan Trujillo
  • Felipe Carbajal
  • Jose Maria Garcia
  • Miguel Garcia
  • Gabriel Lujan
  • Manuel Arguella
  • Ignacio Gonzalez
  • Jose Guadalupe Ortega
  • Felipe Arguello
  • Manuel Gregorio Martin
  • Juan Cristobal Trujillo
  • Tomas Encarnacion Garcia
  • Carlos Salazar
  • Francisco Arguello
  • Francisco Sena
  • Jose Ignacio Madrid
  • Miguel Paez
  • Manuel Paez
  • Miguel Mascarenas
  • Cecilio Montano
  • Cruz Medina
  • Bernardo Martin
  • Miguel Arguello
  • Esteban Valdez

"Mora" is actually today three plazas and three villages; Mora, Cleveland (originally San Antonio) and Chacon. Holman (originally Agua Negra) lies between Chacon and Cleveland. The church of Santa Gertrudes is in Mora, San Antonio in Cleveland and San Isidro in Chacon. The word "Mora" appears to mean "mulberry" or some similar berry. Historical and genealogical records for Mora are difficult to obtain for a number of reasons. First, the residents did not keep many records, unlike other American frontier locations. Second, Mora was destroyed by Americans in 1848 in retaliation for rebelling against the new government and most of the archives were lost. In 1837 some settlers took part in the Rebellion which overthrew the Perez government. This lasted but a short time, and when it was over, the people settled back into their former way of living. During this time the mountain branch of the Santa Fe trail ran through Mora and the plains branch ran through Wagon Mound. Few Anglo-Americans settled in Mora, but to a large degree the written history of the area has been of them. Although few Anglos settled there, many passed through on their way to Taos, Las Vegas or Santa Fe. Few stayed longer than a few days.

The Mexican War with the United States was fought between 1846 and 1848 - and New Mexico became part of the United States. Mora was little affected by the war. The American occupation was, however, a different matter. In 1847 a "General" Cortes and Pablo Montoya began stirring up the northern counties to revolt against the occupiers. Governor Charles Bent was killed in Taos onj January 19, 1847. On this same day a group of traders passing through the Mora area was killed. This led to revolt in every town in eastern New Mexico with the notable exception of Las Vegas On January 24, 1847, A band of American volunteers headed from Las Vegas to Mora planning to exact retribution. The band lacked sufficient ammunition and powder for facing the well defended village. Private John Hudgins has described the village:

. . . about 250 or 300 yards square, with lines of adobe houses joined together except in two places which was occupied by cedar pickets eight feet high, one two-story L adobe building at the northwest angle and a wood block (house) at the southeast angle. The two-story building was pierced with loopholes for small arms and one embrasure for cannon (but no cannon) all in the upper story.

The attack failed when Captain Israel Hendley, one of the group was killed and the group left the area. This failed attack was followed on 1 February 1847 by another expedition under Captain Morin. Armed with cannon, this group succeeded in destroying the village and proceeded to burn ranches and grain fields. An eyewitness gave the following account from the vantage point of Morin's position:

As they lived all scattered in their fields, they joined together as soon as they were appraised that they would be attacked by the American soldiers, and fortified themselves with whatever kind of logs they could find ready, at the foot of the mountain on the road going from Mora to Cebolla, there they were attacked by the soldiers, who killed one of their own men, Manuel Gallegos and wounded another named Juan Guillen. After this attack the soldiers turned to the houses and destroyed them by fire before leaving the Valley. (from Jose Ramon Pacheco, The Mora, New Mexico Story.)

In 1860 Mora County came into existence. Before this time most of the county had been in Taos County and San Miguel County. The new Mora County was nearly twice the size of what it is today. A process of take away was begun and by 1900 it had been reduced to a size only a little larger than it is now. Since then some of the eastern county was added to Harding County.

Cities and towns

Regions of New Mexico Flag of New Mexico
Llano Estacado | Sangre de Christo Mountains
Largest cities
Albuquerque | Las Cruces | Santa Fe
Farmington | Roswell | Clovis | Alamogordo | Los Lunas | Hobbs | Carlsbad | Espanola | Gallup | Las Vegas | Deming | Belen | Taos | Silver City | Portales | Artesia | Los Alamos | Grants
Counties
Bernalillo | Catron | Chaves | Cibola | Colfax | Curry | De Baca | Doņa Ana | Eddy | Grant | Guadalupe | Harding | Hidalgo | Lea | Lincoln | Los Alamos | Luna | McKinley | Mora | Otero | Quay | Rio Arriba | Roosevelt | San Juan | San Miguel | Sandoval | Santa Fe | Sierra | Socorro | Taos | Torrance | Union | Valencia
Colleges and universities
College of Santa Fe | College of the Southwest | Eastern New Mexico University | New Mexico Highlands University | New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology | New Mexico Military Institute | New Mexico State University | St. John's College, Santa Fe | University of New Mexico | Western New Mexico University

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