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Reasons To Love Albuquerque

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Here are things to check out in Albuquerque.

Albuquerque, New Mexico

The history of Albuquerque, New Mexico dates back up to 12,000 years, beginning with the presence of Paleo-Indian hunter-gatherers in the region. Gradually, these nomadic people adopted a more settled, agricultural lifestyle and began to build multi-story stone or adobe dwellings now known as pueblos by 750 CE. The Albuquerque area was settled by the Tiwa people beginning around 1250. By the 1500s, there were around 20 Tiwa pueblos along a 60-mile (97 km) stretch of the middle Rio Grande valley. The region was visited by Spanish conquistadores beginning with the expedition of Francisco Vázquez de Coronado in 1540–41 and began to be settled by Spanish colonists after the expedition of Juan de Oñate in 1598. By 1680, 17 Spanish estancias were reported along the Camino Real in the Albuquerque area.

The settlers were driven out by the Pueblo Revolt in 1680. When they returned in 1692, they were able to re-settle the abandoned estancias. In 1706, the recently appointed governor of New Mexico, Francisco Cuervo y Valdés, officially designated the community as a royally chartered town and named it Albuquerque. The settlement remained small and dispersed throughout the 1700s, eventually coalescing into a series of plazas of which the largest was today’s Old Town. Possession of the town, along with the rest of New Mexico, passed to Mexico in 1821 and then to the United States in 1846. These developments brought increased commerce and Albuquerque prospered as a trading hub and U.S. Army post.

In 1880 the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railway reached Albuquerque, but the establishment of the depot some distance from the plaza led to the creation of a rival “New Town” that quickly outstripped the older community. New Town was dominated by recently arrived Anglo-Americans and European immigrants who modeled its buildings and institutions on those they remembered back home. Albuquerque soon resembled a typical small American city and was incorporated in 1891. The city grew rapidly in the early 20th century, spurred in part by the tuberculosis treatment industry, and then even faster after World War II when it became a major scientific and military hub. Since the 1940s, the city has seen major urban sprawl with a focus on decentralized, auto-oriented development. As the city has continued to grow, officials have tried to encourage denser development, revitalization of the Downtown area, and improved transportation.

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