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Block by Block Piecing Together Central New Mexico's Past: The Homesteaders by Gail D'Arcy
Histories of the homesteaders and families of the Progresso and Cedarvale, New Mexico, area

... Such works really haven't been widely done since the Bicentennial era of county histories around the country.  It also preserves a record of a small rural community that is all but gone, so future researchers will have a resource to consult on this brief period and place in New Mexico history.  --Cameron Saffell, New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum

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... the census of 1880, I believe, was declared "The West Is Settled." But, that statement begs the question, "by what criteria?" Gail D'Arcy gives us what's needed for a closer judgment. Gail compiles testimony. These are testimonies of hands-on experiences of central New Mexico settlers themselves.

They carved out of the raw land a pinto bean bonanza. They watched it come alive. They watched it die. They left an indelible mark on the land and also in their hearts!

One by one they conceded to a more harmonious purpose for the land than their dreams of dry land pinto beans. Gail is a historian. But, being a historian of the best sort is incidental to Gail's story. Gail is herself! She breathed the air, ate the food, and woke up to ice in the water buckets on the kitchen counter.

Gail was there. And, she modestly realizes we need the story ... --Bobby Neeley

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