England’s Gift to Santa Fe

In 1930 an old 1776 map by Jose de Urruitia of La Villa Real de la Santa Fe came to the attention of a visiting archivist at Oxford University. Oxford gave a copy of the map to New Mexico when they found out that it was in their possession. The ancient map is a blueprint of the 17th century building laws of Spain brought to the new world. The document shows that as early as 1607 city planners put in place a quadrangular Plaza de Armas. Four main gates led to Las Casas Reales, now called the Palace of the Governors. Up from the two main squares, la iglesia parroquial, now called the Basilica Cathedral of St. Francis of Assisi is located on the map.

Barrio de Analco

Across the Santa Fe River the San Miguel Mission was once used as a hospital run by Franciscan missionaries. Barrio de Analco is the old name of that location given by the Aztec Indians of Mexico. Analco is Nahuatl meaning “on the other side of the river.” Behind the casas reales was El Presidio de la Santa Cruz, the large military barracks and horse corrals. Located across from the Palacio de los Gobernadores was la castrense, the military chapel, whose stone-carved reredo (altar screen) currently resides at Cristo Rey church. These are but a few of the details found on this ancient map. Thanks to a detailed Spanish cartographer Santa Fe’s early history has been preserved.

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