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7 Pieces Of History Near Las Cruces, NM

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Las Cruces, New Mexico is a city rich in history. Located in the southern part of the state, it has witnessed numerous significant events throughout its existence. Here are seven historical events that have taken place near Las Cruces, NM.

1) The Battle of Brazito - On December 25, 1846, during the Mexican-American War, American forces met Mexican troops in one of the first battles of the conflict. The battle, which took place near the small town of Brazito, was won by the American army.

2) The Mesilla Valley Massacre - In 1871, a group of Apache warriors raided a stagecoach station located in what is now Mesilla, NM. They killed several people and stole horses and supplies. This event highlighted the ongoing conflict between settlers and Native Americans in the area.

3) The Elephant Butte Dam construction - Construction of the Elephant Butte Dam, which began in 1907, was a significant project for the region. The dam, located on the Rio Grande, helped provide irrigation for the surrounding farmland, which helped the city grow and prosper.

4) The Las Cruces Riot - In 1969, tensions between the local Chicano community and the police department came to a head. The riot lasted for three days and resulted in over 100 arrests and widespread destruction. This event is seen as a turning point in the Chicano civil rights movement.

5) Apollo 17 Moon Rock Visit - In 1973, a moon rock brought back by Apollo 17 astronauts was put on display at New Mexico State University, located in Las Cruces. This was a significant event for the community, as it highlighted the city's ties to the space program.

6) The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument designation - In 2014, President Obama designated the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument, located just east of Las Cruces. This protected area contains many historical and cultural sites, including Native American rock art and 19th century ranching villages.

7) White Sands missile testing - Located about an hour from Las Cruces, the White Sands Missile Range played a significant role in the development of the US nuclear program. It was also the site of many missile tests throughout the Cold War and beyond.

In conclusion, Las Cruces, NM, and its surrounding area have a rich and diverse history, with many significant events taking place over the years. From battles and riots to scientific breakthroughs, the city and its inhabitants have played a vital role in shaping the region and the country as a whole.
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