NAME: Gran Quivira
COUNTY: Torrance
CLIMATE: Hot Summers and Cold Winters
BEST TIME TO VISIT: Spring or Fall
COMMENTS: South of Mountainair on 55. Definitely worth the drive! There's a ranger station and marked trails. Watch for Rattle Snakes in the warm months! Gran Quivira is a beautiful and inspiring place and I highly suggest making the trip.
REMAINS: Indian pueblos & Spanish Mission

The grey stone ruins of Gran Quivira are located at the top of the windy Chupadero Mesa on the south rim of the Estancia Basin of central New Mexico. Known as Las Humanas (or Jumanos) during the Spanish colonial period, the village is one of three in the Salinas Pueblo Missions Natioanl Monument. While it is uncertain where the people who built the village about 1300 AD came from, two likely candidates are either the Anasazi from the north, who abandoned Mesa Verde about 1300 AD; or the Mogollon from the south. The other two villages in the monument, Abo and Quarai, are located about 30 miles north of Gran Quivira. At each of these sites, visitors can see the ruins of the apartment block structures, interconnected rooms built of stone and local wood, and the ruins of the mission churches built by the Spanish in the 16th century. Submitted by: Tyson Woodul

GRAN QUIVERA: Post office 1904/1909. MONUMENT OF GRAN QUIVERA: This name at one time was associated with all the unknown land W of the Mississippi and E or N of the Gulf of California. Michael Lok's 1582 map shows Quivera at the tip of the western continent with culiacan, Galicia, and Florida covering the rest of the ara between Canada and Mexico. Twitchell, 'Leading Facts of NM History, 1, 231-233, note 2150, quotes Adolph Bandelier: 'At foot of the Mesa de los Jumanos there was Tabira now famous under the misleading name of "La Gran Quivera". However, on L'Atlas Curieux (1700) both Tavira and Gran uivira are shown: Tavira E of Socorro and S of Santa Fe; Gran Quivira in large letters at the N edge of the Mar de las Californias o Carlinas (Gulf of California or Carolinas).Juan Vasquez de Coronado sought for Quivira in 1540/1542, as the country was reported to him by the Indian called The Turk. Benavides, in 1634, refers to the 'kingdom of quivira' in the west and another of the same name in the east. The references are too numerous to cite. It has been suggested that the word comes from French, cuiri, 'copper' and that Indfians got the term from Jacaues Cartier, who was on the St. Lawrence before Coronado was on the Rio Grande. Professor Lansing Bloom proposed that may have been derived from the Arabic word quivir, 'big' illustrated in Spanish place names as Guadalquivir. A third etymology is a Spanish corruption of Wichita Kirkurus, named for that tribe. The great Spanish mission in Torrance County is completely disintegrated, but the earliest church was built in 1629 and the massive walls of the second church and its attached monastery and covent, on which work began about 1649, are still standing. Courtesy Sam McWhorter.

Ancient Hallway
Courtesy Tyson Woodul

Courtesy Tyson Woodul

The Flour Room
Courtesy Tyson Woodul