Actually, our first stop on this adventure was in Benson, Arizona where I went swimming with the keys to the RV in a pocket. The water damaged the electronics?! Fortunately, the old fashioned key works.

Dripping Springs Natural Area

Dripping Springs Natural Area

We spent two nights in Mesilla, New Mexico which is adjacent to Las Cruces. I didn’t think I had ever been here until we had dinner at La Posta de la Mesilla when I recognized that we had dinner here on my relocation trip eight years ago. On this trip we were able to see more and learn about the area’s interesting history. The 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo ended the Mexican-American War, establishing Mesilla as a Mexican holding. On November 16, 1854, soldiers raised the U. S. flag on the plaza marking the signing of the Gadsden Purchase. The Butterfield Overland Trail was an overland mail stage line between St. Louis and San Francisco from 1858-1861. During the Civil War, Mesilla was the capital of Confederate Arizona Territory. We visited the Basilica of San Albino originally established in 1852. The current Romanesque structure, built in 1908, was recognized as a Minor Basillica by Pope Benedict XVI in 2008.

On Saturday we hiked the 1.5 mile Dripping Springs Trail on Bureau of Land Management land. We saw the ruins of the Dripping Springs Resort, built in the 1870s by Confederate Colonel Eugene Van Patten. After going bankrupt in 1917, Dr. Nathan Boyd built a sanatorium for tuberculosis patients such as his wife. Dr. Sexton kept it open until 1946. We also hiked the La Cueva Trail to the Hermit’s Cave.

Green Bridge

Green Bridge

We also visited the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum. We enjoyed two special exhibits, “What’s the Buzz? Why Honey Bees Matter” and “Weaving in New Mexico: The Ancestral Puebloan & Rio Grande Traditions.” The blacksmith demonstrated how to create a nail with amazing facts about the history of nail production. The indoor museum documents agriculture history in the state and the outdoor exhibits include an antique equipment park with farm implements such as planters, cultivators, hay rakes, and threshing machines. The historic Green Bridge caught my attention. It was the Pecos River Bridge in 1902 and the Rio Hondo Bridge in 1944.

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