On our trip to New Mexico, we visited Old Mesilla, near where my grandparents lived in Mesilla Park. Mesilla was settled by families from New Mexico and Mexico, but, after the Gadsden Purchase, became part of the United States. During the Civil War, Mesilla was the capital of the Arizona Territory!
As we walked around, we noticed many references to Billy the Kid and discovered that he had been tried and sentenced to death at the county courthouse. However, he escaped before the sentence could be carried out (only to be shot down later by Pat Garrett!).
End of history lesson!
Here is one of the local shops.
We stayed in the Davy Crockett room at our Tucson hotel, but it was Frida Kahlo’s eyes that followed us everywhere!
Below is a view of the tower on Skeen Hall at New Mexico State University, as seen through the Miller Field Gates which used to serve as the entrance to the athletic fields. Although the gates weren’t constructed until 1924, I like to think that I was walking on the grounds where my grandfather coached. Because this was taken in New Mexico, I added some Georgia O’Keeffe painting effects in Topaz Impression- although I have to say the photo looks pretty much as it did straight out of camera.
We stayed in Tucson on our way to New Mexico. I never tire of this view of the Saguaro Desert!
When Lonnie and I walked into the Visitor Center at New Mexico State University, we did not have high expectations of finding anything.I explained to the very nice receptionist that my grandfather had been a coach there from 1910 to 1914 and that I was hoping to at find out that there were some buildings left from 1910 that I could photograph. We were told that no, the buildings from that era did not survive and that it was too late to meet with the archivist who might have some documents from that era (her office was closing at 4:00). They were being very helpful, however, and marked up a map of how to get to the library where the archives were and wrote down the contact information for the archivist so that I could let her know that we were coming.
While this was going on, Lonnie was in the adjacent conference room looking around, and he spotted a football up on a bookshelf. As he looked closer, her realized that it had my grandfather’s name on it- and that it was the game ball from when the team won the 1913 Southwest Championship! You can imagine our excitement!
As I was photographing the ball, the employee mentioned that there were old yearbooks in the archives. How exciting! But right there on the bookshelf were yearbooks; just as she was saying that these were the more recent ones, we saw some very small yearbooks in the collection. You guessed it- the yearbooks from the years Grandpa was there!
As I realized what a treasure trove we had come across, my hands started shaking, and I got chills- it was an out of body experience. We took some time carefully taking cell phone shots of the pages that featured Grandpa- and found a goldmine of photos and articles. An unbelievable find! One article was especially moving to me, because it told of his kindness and emphasis on sportsmanship and fair play over winning. Those were the qualities he demonstrated his whole coaching career- and what made him so beloved by his players and the community- and by our family.
Below is a photo composite- the football overlaid upon a photo of the champion team of 2013.
The next day we met with the archivist and discovered that the entire collection of student newspapers was online. I searched for Badenoch- there were 93 entries! There seemed to be an almost equal number of articles about my grandfather AND my grandmother! Mimi, as we called her, had a beautiful classical singing voice and performed at events through the college and elsewhere while living in New Mexico- and also managed to have two babies between 1910 and 1912 (her first child was born in Chicago)! The archivist found a file of correspondence between my Grandpa and the president of the college from when he applied to coach there. It was emailed it to me when we got home.
So now my task is to organize this information and integrate it into my genealogy software program. Family history, like laundry, is never done!
I thought of Ansel Adams’ famous Moonrise Over Hernandez New Mexico as I titled this photo, but the only things my photo has in common with the master’s is that it was taken in New Mexico, there was a moon, and there was a camera involved.
We returned Sunday from a five day trip that was intended to be a ten day trip. We had planned to drive all the way to San Antonio, Texas to meet up with my cousin, Steve and his wife Mary, who had rented a condo there for the month of February. Unfortunately Steve got a nasty virus, and we had to limit our trip to New Mexico.
We stayed in Las Cruces for two nights and were able to use the time to learn about the place of my mother’s birth and her father’s coaching experience at New Mexico State University- as well as visit this wonderful restaurant TWICE.
We had planned to go to the university- thinking we might be able to see some old buildings. We stopped at the Visitor Center to inquire about what might still be there from 1910- and what happened there was a genealogist’s dream come true!
To be continued next week. . .
This photo was also taken at the Eagle River Nature Center and is probably close to what Alaska looks like right now. It was taken on our Thanksgiving visit in 2016.
One of our favorite places to walk is the Nature Center in Eagle River- a gateway to Chugach State Park. I have posted many photos taken there in the last couple years. It’s always beautiful, and it’s about five minutes from our daughter’s house!.
Another view of the Portage Glacier
The Portage Glacier!
I’m posting photos of Beautiful Alaska all week. This is a bridge seen on the walk to Spencer Glacier.
The scene at Spencer Glacier- taken last summer on our visit to Alaska.
The sun was setting, and most of the few people watching the waves, the surfers, and the sunset were leaving the beach. Now it was the life guard stations all in a row that caught my eye.
I suspect that smoke from the fires added to the haze at sunset last week at Huntington Beach. If you look closely you can see surfers in the waters.
We have just returned from a short but wonderful visit to Southern California, where we visited with our son’s family. We have developed a tradition of spending one night at the beach before heading over to see the family. This time it was Huntington Beach with its majestic waves and ever present surfers. We got there just in time for sunset and had a great time walking around- people-watching and soaking in the ocean views and sunset.
Unfortunately, I took so many photos I managed to wear out my shoulder again- when will I ever learn? My favorite way to shoot is to walk around with my (heavy) camera on my cross body strap- constantly bringing it up to my eye and snapping. I think it’s the repetitive motion (and the weight of the camera)that causes the pain. The next day, I just used my iPhone camera. This whole issue is weighing on my mind; I am definitely not ready to give up my big camera (or go to a lighter mirrorless camera), but am considering only using my iPhone for street/beach photography and camera on tripod for scenes like these. I hate having physical issues get in the way of doing what I love, so I am determined to find a work-around!