Capulin, Union County, New Mexico, Settlers
Located 28 miles east of Raton and - miles west of Clayton. Inhabited in ancient times by Folsom Man, later by Comanches and Kiowas. It was a site on their trade route to annual fairs in Taos, Picuris and Pecos Pueblos. The Pueblo Native Americans used the site to stage their buffalo hunts. The Spanish/Mexican sheep herders knew this area long before the French fur traders. Wagon trains later stopped here on their way to Rayado. New Mexicans started building adobe structures, here, shortly after the Civil War. They raised sheep, goats, chickens, chili, beans, onions and alfalfa. Once a year they would make the trip to Rayado or Trinidad to buy supplies (flour, salt, sugar) and get married or baptize babies. Then came the era where ranchers in Texas saw there was open range, and few homesteadrs thought the land worth settling. Eventually they were ordered evacuated by presidential edict to pave the way for the railroad, nestor and settlement. The development of cattle ranches brought horse thieves and rustlers. Stockmen met at Capulin or Trincherita on the Dry Cimarron, to pass resolutions in an effort to stop the outlaws (Raton Comet, December 20, 1884). This was followed by oil speculators in the 1920's.
Capulin recognized all the county seats of Colfax County, and became part of Union County when it was formed in 1912. The first Capulin Post Office was first established on December 22 1879 and closed on August 23, 1880. A new section of town was being built along the railroad right of way. The old Capulin ceased to function, the people moved to the new town. The new post office opened on May 12, 1909. Changed to Dedman during the arrival of the Railroad, it is said Mr. Deadman asked Homer Farr, postmaster, to name the new town after him. The name "Capulin" was restored in the spring of 1922.
Sources: 1. The Capulin, New Mexico Story by Father Stanley, December 1970.
Reprinted in Colfax Communities by William Carroll, Coda Publications 2006.
Book available at the Arthur Johnson Memorial Library in Raton, NM., or through the inter library loan system
with your local library. Consult World cataloguing system by clicking here.
The following is an alphabetical surname list of interesting persons listed in this story.
Bob Barton, cattleman;
Burnam, raton superintendent of schools;
J.M. Click, merchant;
G.C. Culberson, auditor;
Charles Davis, mail runner Capulin/Troyburg;
E.J. Dedman, superintendent of local railroad;
B.F. Drew and family, merchant, cattleman;
J.B. Dyer, president Capulin Mercantile Co.;
Homer Farr, merchant, lumber yard, postmaster, justice of the peace, custodian of Mt. Capulin, started newspaper "Dedman Developer;
J.H. Jackson, general manager Capulin Mercantile;
Ralph W. Jones, postmaster;
Don Celso Lopez;
George McCormick, cattleman;
J.C. Miller, cattleman;
Gertrude Ella Newton, postmaster;
Lawrence W. Newton, postmaster;
Robert L. Newton, postmaster;
Hose A. Pena;
H.C. Salyer, treasurer Capulin Mercantile;
J.A. Small, judge;
Mr. Snyder, rancher;
John R. Stuyvestant, first postmaster;
Mr. Thomas, manager 101 ranch;
Jose B. Vasquez;
Fae Wagner, teacher;
Dan E. Young, cattleman;
Cemetery information, click here.