The Spanish-Americans of New Mexico: A Heritage of Pride

By Nancie L. González | Go to book overview

It has taken a long time for wage labor to replace sheep- herding; and, indeed, it has not yet completely done so. Yet the story of the gradual decline in this industry is also the story of the change in many other aspects of the sociocultural system of which it was an important integral part, if not its basis. In succeeding chapters some of the specific ways in which this traditional culture has changed during the past five or six decades will be considered. At the same time that the processes of cultural breakdown or disorganization have been going on, there have been trends leading to a new synthesis, a modern reorganization retaining and combining some of the old traits with the new.


Notes
1
See Adams and Chavez ( 1956); H. Fergusson ( 1933:81); Zeleny ( 1944:66).
2
Although there are many books and articles dealing with the arts and crafts of New Mexico, the best comprehensive volume on the subject is by R. F. Dickey 1949, New Mexico Village Arts.
3
Although sources differ, this practice may have been of relatively recent origin. Thus, Perrigo says, "Beginning in the Mexican period, when primogeniture had been abolished, the practice of dividing the arable fields among heirs was initiated. A land grant which once sufficed for a family presently was cut up into strips of only a few acres each for the families of sons and grandsons" ( 1960:370). The practice of leaving all lands to the eldest son would have forced younger sons out of the village, and as long as there was vacant land upon which to settle and form new villages, this would have been an efficient and functional practice. The time of the change in the law suggested here is significant in that it also coincides with the period during which population pressure was becoming a problem. This would have had the effect of increasing the number of persons and families living in any given village, while decreasing the standards of living for all--a situation which did, in fact, develop. E. Fergusson ( 1940:259) assumes equal inheritance to have been dictated by Spanish law. Atencio ( 1964:46) says all children always inherited equally in spite of Spanish law favoring primogeniture.
4
Callon ( 1962:7) writes, in regard to the town of Las Vegas, "As per the stipulation of the grant they selected a townsite, two community gardens, an

-55-

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The Spanish-Americans of New Mexico: A Heritage of Pride
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Acknowledgments vi
  • Contents vii
  • Introduction ix
  • Notes xv
  • Chapter I - Setting 5
  • Notes 14
  • Chapter II - Language, Race, and Culture 15
  • Notes 30
  • Chapter III - Early Settlement and Traditional Culture 33
  • Notes 55
  • Chapter IV - Social System 58
  • Notes 83
  • Chapter V - Voluntary Associations 86
  • Notes 114
  • Chapter VI - The Wages of Change 116
  • Notes 134
  • Chapter VII - Effects of Urbanization 136
  • Notes 176
  • Chapter VIII - The Continuing Scene: Activism in New Mexico, 1966-1969 179
  • Notes 195
  • Chapter IX - Summary and Conclusions 197
  • Notes 213
  • Bibliography 215
  • Index 237
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