March is Women in History month. Almost a hundred years ago two Spanish became a part of Santa Fe history. The first was Albina Lucero. She was a partera (midwife), bootlegger and the first deputy sheriff of Santa Fe. Albina could come to your house to deliver your wife’s baby. While there she could bring over some of her homemade moonshine. And if you become inebriated and unruly, she could arrest you and take you to jail. It was all in a day’s work for Albina.
Law & Order
Albina Lucero was born in 1879 and died in 1957. In 1926, Sheriff Isais Alarid appointed Lucero as Santa Fe’s first female Deputy Sheriff. Her job was to guard female prisoners at the local jail and to supervise local dances and community events. In addition to being a partera, Lucero was also curandera (holistic healer). In the 1930s, Lucero received a certificate from the Dept. of Health for assisting hundreds of women during childbirth.
Three Centuries of Wisdom
Amalia Sena Sanchez was born in 1892 and died in 2001. The Santa Fe Living Treasure died at the age of 109 having lived through three centuries. Sanchez was crowned Santa Fe’s first Fiesta queen in 1927. Throughout her life she was a volunteer with the New Mexico Museum, the Red Cross and other civic organizations. During that time she volunteered at St. Catherine’s Indian School where she befriended Sister Katherine Drexel, the founder of the Order of the Blessed Sacrament, who was canonized a Roman Catholic saint in 2000. Amalia Sena Sanchez lived long enough to learn that her friend had become a bona fide saint! There’s not many people alive today that can say they’ve had a friend who really was a saint.