Thursday, August 11, 2005

And Now for Something Completely Different

Lyn's grandparents owned and operated the Estancia News Herald newspaper in Estancia, New Mexico for many years, as well as the print shop where the newspaper and many other items were printed. The equipment from that old print shop is now on display at the Palace of the Governors Museum in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Shortly after moving into a new house a few years ago, we were going through some boxes that had belonged to Lyn's mother. One of the more interesting things that we came across were a number of old, copper half-tone printing plates that had originally come from that old print shop.

The most interesting of these, at least to me, was a plate made from a photograph of Mission La Purísima Concepción de Cuarac, now known as Quari, which is now a part of the Salinas Pueblo Missions National Monument near Mountainair, New Mexico.



Adolph Bandelier took a very similar photograph on December 28, 1882.

According to the book "In the Midst of a Loneliness" The Architectural History of the Salinas Missions, excavation and stabilization began at Quari on June 1, 1934 and around July 31, masons rebuilt the entrance doorway and reconstructed the sides of the door. This image taken in the fall of 1937 shows the re-constructed doorway from inside the church.

The photograph on the copper plate had to have been taken sometime prior to the doorway being rebuilt in 1934, but there is no date indicated anywhere on the plate or backing. We also have no idea at this time who the photographer was.