The Baca / Douglas Genealogy and Family History Blog

29 June 2009

Snapshot of Socorro: September and October 1883

I love looking at old newspapers. This link shows page 12 of the September 1883 and page 1 of the Bullion, a local newspaper.

Socorro had become a boom town during the 1880s. Prospectors were opening up new mines throughout the area.. Billings Smelter was built in Park City, at the base of Socorro Peak, or the "M" Mountain as we Socorrians call it. This lead to an influx of people from all over the country, as well as the world. However, before long many of the mines dried up and many of the prospectors left.

The Bullion was published to capitalize on this boom. It informed the populous about new mine prospects and the state of current mines. It also included local, state, national and world news.

The pages that are displayed on this link show advertisements of the local businesses. These include John Eastwood who dealt and manufactured jewelry; Juan Jose Baca who had dry goods, boots, shoes, notions, groceries and liquors; fancy groceries from F.P. Shaw on the Plaza; Asche and Hilton Boot and Shoe Store; and many others. There were attorneys in Socorro, too. These included W. E. Kelly, N. B. Cartmell, Albert Hagan, and many more.

There is an advertisement for the Convent of Mt. Carmel. Tuition and board was $20.00 a month, $200.00 a year. They offered a full academic curriculum, with "particular attention given to ... Painting, Drawing, Fancy Needle Work, Embroidery and ... Vocal and Instrumental Music."

If you needed to go somewhere, there was a posting of time tables for the A.T. and S.F. railroad lines. If you just arrived, there were accommodations at the Sturgis House on Fischer Street.

And let's not forget the mining industry. Some merchants advertised that they sold mining supplies including the Blanchard and Co. and the aforementioned F.P. Shaw. Andy Naw was "prepared to make and repair wagons and mining tools" and also did general blacksmithing. Assayer and metallurgist T. E. Simmons plied his trade. The Ozark & Socorro Mining Company advertized also advertised in the paper. And let's not forget the aforementioned Gustav Billing Smelting Works.

You will need Adobe Acrobat to read the link. If you don't have it, click on this link. I will post more pages in future articles.

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