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5 Fun Facts About October 16 In New Mexico History

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

1) In 1858, the first stagecoach arrived in New Mexico, bringing mail and provisions to the newly established territory. This marked a significant moment in the history of transportation and communication in the region.

2) On October 16, 1934, the famous Santa Fe Indian School band won first place at the National Music Contest in Chicago, Illinois. The Native American students had been practicing and performing for nearly a year, and their victory was a major accomplishment for both the school and the state of New Mexico.

3) In 1973, New Mexico became the first state to officially honor Hispanic heritage by declaring October 16 as "Hispanic Heritage Day." The day is now celebrated annually throughout the state, with festivals, parades, and other events highlighting the diverse cultural contributions of Hispanic New Mexicans.

4) On October 16, 1991, the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta set a new world record for the largest mass ascent of hot air balloons. Over 1,000 balloons took to the sky that day, filling the New Mexico skyline with color and excitement.

5) In a more somber event, October 16, 1998, marked the 20th anniversary of the infamous Albuquerque mail truck massacre. On this day in 1978, a group of armed robbers hijacked a U.S. mail truck in Albuquerque, New Mexico, killing the driver and two bystanders in a violent shootout. The incident remains one of the most deadly attacks on a mail carrier in U.S. history.
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