Altar Boy, Musician & Editor

Benigno Muñiz at right with his family in the early part of the 20th century.

Lamy’s Altar Boy

Benigno Muñiz makes the local news long before he wrote about it.

Benigno Muñiz was born in 1870, and when he was 11 he served as an altar boy for Archbishop Jean-Baptist Lamy. In 1899 he became the editor of the Spanish-language newspaper El Nuevo Mexicano. He also performed with Los Villeros Alegres, a leading musical ensemble, in 1931, and was in charge of the weekly band concerts on the Plaza. Muñiz owned several houses that he rented to many of the early artists who came to Santa Fe, like Paul Burlin and Arthur Musgrave. Eventually he sold one of the houses at the corner of College Street to writer and poet Witter Bynner.

Witter Bynner leads the Santa Fe Fiesta parade in the 1950s.

The writer and poet Witter Bynner documented Santa Fe history with his photographs. He befriended the English author, D.H. Lawrence, on a visit to Santa Fe. Best known for his 1913 book Sons and Lovers, Lawrence died long before the book was made into a movie in 1960. He and his wife Frieda, lived in Taos from 1922 to 1925. Lawrence died in 1930 in France at the age of 45. His ashes were later brought to New Mexico, where they are interred at the D.H. Lawrence Ranch, 18 miles northwest of Taos.

Please support Ana Pacheco's work at:

Buy Me a Coffee

Our nation’s history would not be complete without the story of Santa Fe. Experience the ultimate Santa Fe tour with local historian Ana Pacheco.