May Day in Santa Fe

May Day, celebrated throughout the world on May 1, pays tribute to all workers. The holiday began in the late 19th century to protest unsafe working conditions and 16-hour workdays. St. Joseph is venerated on this day as the patron saint of laborers. An important part of Santa Fe folklore states that it was St. Joseph who built the circular staircase at the Loretto Chapel.

May Day celebration in front of the Palace of the governors in Santa Fe in 1914.

Heart of the City

The Santa Fe Plaza has been at the heart of the city’s growth since it was founded more than 400 years ago. The wheels of commerce, civic celebrations, and religious devotion have converged on this quadrangular parcel of land with the Sangre de Cristo Mountains as a backdrop since 1610. Events of historic proportion have taken place on the Plaza, including the re-conquest of 1692 for the Spanish Crown and the beginning of American occupation in 1846. It was on the Plaza that Don Diego and his soldiers negotiated a peaceful re-entry to the capital city. It was also on the plaza that Gen. Stephen Kearny and his soldiers rode into town claiming Sovereignty for the United States.

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