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5 Fun Facts About June 19 In New Mexico History

---Learn Every Day: NM Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history nm To: 618-270-4005---

1. 1540: Francisco Vázquez de Coronado enters New Mexico:
On June 19, 1540, Spanish conquistador Francisco Vázquez de Coronado entered the area that is now known as New Mexico. He was on a mission to find the Seven Cities of Gold.

2. 1846: Mexican-American War begins:
The Mexican-American War began on June 19, 1846, when U.S. General Zachary Taylor crossed the Rio Grande into Mexican territory. This conflict would have a major impact on the history of New Mexico and the entire Southwest.

3. 1864: Battle of La Mesa:
On June 19, 1864, Union and Confederate forces clashed in the Battle of La Mesa near Mesilla, New Mexico. The Union forces were led by Colonel Edward Canby, while the Confederates were led by Colonel John Robert Baylor. The Union emerged victorious, marking a key moment in the Civil War in the West.

4. 1910: White Sands National Monument created:
On June 19, 1910, White Sands National Monument was established in southern New Mexico. This unique landscape of white gypsum sand dunes covers over 275 square miles and attracts thousands of visitors every year.

5. 1953: New Mexico State University grants honorary degree to Albert Einstein:
On June 19, 1953, New Mexico State University awarded a Ph.D. in science to Albert Einstein, recognizing his contributions to the field of physics. Einstein visited the university to give a lecture and to receive the degree, which he referred to as a "real honor."
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