NAME: El moro
COUNTY: Cibola
CLIMATE: Nothing to worry about
COMMENTS: El moro: post office 1927/ 1963.
REMAINS: El more (the rock), and an unexcavated pueblo ruins on the mesa above.
El moro: span. 'headland, bluff, fortress'. Farming and ranching community on nm 53, 37 mi sw of grants. Named for el moro national monument. El moro national monument. Just s of town of el moro. Established in 1906 by president theodore roosevelt to preserve inscription rock. Since 1933 monument has been under national parks service. The great triangular rock at this spot is made of light colored sandstone, soft enough to be cut with a knife or sword point. For centuries, the spaniards carved their names, dates, and short messages on this great 'autograph album' . More than 500 separate carvings have been preserved. The earliest dated inscription is by juan de onate, a mine owner of zacatacas, who became new mexico's colonizer and first governor in 1598. In translation it reads, ' passsed by here the adelantado don juan de onate from the discovery of the sea of the south, the 16th of april of 1606'. Onate was returning from a journey to the pacific coast, and the sea of the south' was the gulf of california. On top of a mesa adjoing el moro is the ruins of an indian pueblo which covers approximately 10 acres. It has not been excavated but the population is estimated to have been 2000 souls. It was a virtual fortress with access only by foot and toe holes carved in solid rock. Truely a sight to behold. El moro mesa. De baca county. 10 mi se of buchanan. Ref: new mexico place names. Pearce. Submitted by: Samuel W McWhorter