New Mexico State University Library Rio Grande Historical Collections

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New Mexico State University Library Rio Grande Historical Collections
Branson Library New Mexico State University Las Cruces.jpg

Contact Information[edit | edit source]

E-mail:[1]  Archives Questions or Comments


4th Floor Branson Library
1305 Frenger Mall
Box 30006, Dept. 3475
Las Cruces, NM 88003-8006

Telephone:[1] 575-646-3839

Hours and holidays:[2]  Library hours correspond to the University semesters.

Map, Directions, and Public Transportation

  • Directions
    • From I-25 North (or East) of Las Cruces: Merge onto I-25 S/US-85 S. Take the University Avenue exit, EXIT 1. 0.2 mi. Keep right to take the ramp toward NMSU. 0.03 mi. Merge onto E University Ave. 1.0 mi. Turn left onto S Espina St. 0.2 mi. Turn left onto Frenger St. 0.3 mi. The Bronson Library at 1305 FRENGER will be on left.
    • From I-10 South of Las Cruces: Merge onto I-10 W/US-180 W. Take the Valley Dr exit, EXIT 142, toward NM-188/NM-101/University Ave. 0.3 mi. Keep right to take the ramp toward NEW MEXICO STATE UNIVERSITY. 0.06 mi. Merge onto E University Ave. 0.6 mi. Turn right onto S Espina St. 0.2 mi. Turn left onto Frenger St. 0.3 mi. The Bronson Library at 1305 FRENGER will be on left.
    • From I-10 West of Las Cruces: Merge onto I-10 E/US-180 E. Take the NM-478/Main St exit, EXIT 142. 0.3 mi. Turn left onto S Main St/NM-478. 0.2 mi. Turn left onto W Union Ave/NM-373. Continue to follow W Union Ave. Turn right onto Stewart St. 0.6 mi. Turn left onto S Williams Ave. 0.1 mi. The Bronson Library at 1305 FRENGER will be on left of the Williams Ave/Frenger St intersection.
  • Public transportation: The Las Cruces RoadRunner Transit city bus route 2 stops two blocks north of Bronson Library on E University Ave near S Solano Dr.

Internet sites and databases:

  • Rio Grande Historical Collections (RGHC) Amador trade catalogs, Archivos General de Notarías de Durango (Mexico), Archivos Históricos del Arzobispado de Durango (Mexico), Archivos Históricos del Estado de Durango (Mexico), inventory and subject index, manuscripts, oral histories, and photographs.
  • NMSU Library find information, research, services, collections, digital collections, about us.
  • Online Archive of New Mexico (part of RMOA) browse by subject, or search by word, subject, or title.
  • NMSU Library Catalog by keyword, author, subject, call number. Catalog is part of
    Logo wcmasthead en.png

Collection Description[edit | edit source]

The Rio Grande Historical Collections (RGHC) at NMSU's Bronson Library consist of records of organizations, personal papers, and other unpublished materials about the cultural heritage and history of New Mexico and the American Southwest. This includes business records, and indexes of notaries during Spanish colonial, and Mexican national periods. Roman Catholic church records since the 1600s cover northern Mexico, Arizona, New Mexico, and Colorado including padrones, libros de fabrica, aniversarios, cuadrantes, ordenes, oficios, cartas, diligencias matrimoniales, diezmos, and varios. They have an index of important documents from the Historical Archives of the State of Durango (Mexico). RGHC maintains an Information File and Subject Index, and an annotated inventory of the NMSU Library's Archives and Special Collections. The HGRC Index of Manuscripts sorts those manuscripts by name and by MS Number. Their oral histories capture interviews and lectures on New Mexico, and Spanish Borderlands history. The photo collection holds more than 500,000 items from almost 150 years of image making in New Mexico and the Southwest.[3]

Alternate Repositories[edit | edit source]

If you cannot visit or find a source at the New Mexico State University Library Rio Grande Historical Collections, a similar source may be available at one of the following.

Overlapping Collections

  • National Archives I, Washington DC, census, pre-WWI military service & pensions, passenger lists, naturalizations, passports, federal bounty land, homesteads, bankruptcy, ethnic sources, prisons, and federal employees.
  • New Mexico State Records Center and Archives, Santa Fe, Roman Catholic church records, censuses, district court, land grants, wills, diaries, family papers, prisons, family and local histories, newspapers. NM's best genealogy repository because of its original territorial, state, and county records.[4]
  • New Mexico State Library, Santa Fe, history, biography, ethnic studies, newspapers, government documents, maps, periodicals, and genealogies. Largest book collection in New Mexico.[4]

Similar Collections

  • UNM Center for Southwest Research, Albuquerque, Includes manuscripts of Southwestern U.S. families, organizations, and businesses, 40,000 books and periodicals, and 120,000 images since the 1850s.[5]
  • Fray Angélico Chávez History Library, Santa Fe, colonial and territorial manuscripts, papers, newspapers, rare books, maps, and photos—rivals in size the State Records Center and Archives.[4]
  • Hispanic Genealogical Research Center (HGRC) of New Mexico, Albuquerque, maintains the Great New Mexico Pedigree Database (GNMPD)  for Hispanic ancestors of New Mexico.[6]
  • National Hispanic Cultural Center, Albuquerque, photographs, maps, manuscripts, and genealogies.[7] The library contains 12,500 book titles about the history and culture of the Hispano world from the U.S. Southwest, Mexico, Central America, Latin America to Spain, and Portugal.[8]

Neighboring Collections

  • Doña Ana County Clerk marriages (restricted for 50 years), death certificates, wills, deeds, mortgages, DD Form 214 soldier discharges.
  • Doña Ana County Probate Court recent wills.
  • Doña Ana County Coroner selected death records.
  • Third Judicial District Court of New Mexico, Las Cruces, civil, and criminal court records.
  • Repositories in surrounding counties: in New Mexico: Luna, Otero, Sierra; in Texas: El Paso; and in Mexico: Chihuahua.
  • New Mexico Dept. of Health Vital Records, Santa Fe, adoption, births (restricted for 100 years), and deaths (restricted for 50 years).
  • Historical Society of New Mexico, Santa Fe, offers links to organizations, museums and other historic points of interest in New Mexico.
  • ABC Library Genealogy Center, Albuquerque, genealogy and Southwestern history, including New Mexico vital records, history, biography, periodicals, and family folders.[4]
  • ABC Library Special Collections Albuquerque and New Mexico history and culture. In-house use only.[9]
  • New Mexico Genealogical Society, Albuquerque, manuscripts, newspapers, periodicals, histories, directories, maps, photos.
  • Archdiocese of Santa Fe Archives, Santa Fe NM, created in 1850, it once also included Arizona, and Colorado. [10]  The Archives houses records from 1678-1950 for dozens of parishes in three states.
  • Repositories in surrounding states (or nations): AZ, CO, OK, TX, UT, and Mexico.
  • Bancroft Library, Berkeley, CA, premier Western Americana, and Latin Americana collections, including Native Americans, Spanish encounter and colonial settlement, exploration of western America, maps and atlases, the Mexican War, westward migration, the Gold Rush, mining, land surveys, ethnic groups.
  • Family History Library, Salt Lake City, 450 computers, 3,400 databases, 3.1 million microforms, 4,500 periodicals, 310,000 books of worldwide family and local histories, civil, church, immigration, ethnic, military, and records pertaining to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
  • National Archives at Denver Includes old New Mexico court records and naturalizations, federal and Indian censuses, passenger arrival lists, World War I draft registrations.
  • Archivo General de la Nación (AGN), Mexico City, church, civil, census, court, history, military, migration, land. Copies of colonial New Mexico records of were often sent to Mexico and Spain.

Sources[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 RGHC Collections -List at NMSU Library (accessed 26 January 2014).
  2. Library Hours in New Mexico State University (accessed 1 March 2013).
  3. Rio Grande Historical Collections (RGHC) in New Mexico State University (accessed 26 January 2015).
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 William Dollarhide and Ronald A. Bremer. America's Best Genealogy Resource Centers (Bountiful, Utah: Heritage Quest, 1998), 79. At various libraries (WorldCat). FHL Ref Book 973 J54d.
  5. CSWR Collection Strengths in University of New Mexico University Libraries (accessed 17 Jan 2015).
  6. HGRC Home in Hispanic Genealogical Research Center (accessed 21 January 2015).
  7. Archives in National Hispanic Cultural Center (accessed 20 January 2015).
  8. Research Library in National Hispanic Cultural Center (accessed 20 January 2015).
  9. Overview - Special Collections in Albuquerque Bernalillo County Library (accessed 20 January 2014).
  10. About the Archdiocese of Santa Fe in Archdiocese of Santa Fe (accessed 15 March 2021).