Introduction - New MexicoLocated in the Southwest region of the United States, New Mexico is one of the four corners states, which comprise the only point in the U.S. where four state (Arizona, Colorado, Utah, and New Mexico) borders meet. This state, comprised of mostly wide open land with very little natural water is also one of only four states that border Mexico. What this state boasts is a capital with the highest elevation in the U.S. as well as one of the country's oldest public buildings, dating back to 1610. It is also one of a few states where millions of acres of Native American reservations still exist. More quick facts and interesting facts as well as some historical information on New Mexico is listed in a kid-friendly format below. This information includes when New Mexico became a state and what the capital is.
Click here for a great selection of Amazon.com books about New Mexico.
State of New Mexico Quick Facts
- New Mexico was the 47th state to join the union.
- New Mexico officially became a state on January 6, 1912.
- New Mexico is the 5th largest state in the United States of America.
- The state capital of New Mexico is Santa Fe, but the largest city in the state is Albuquerque.
- The population of New Mexico is 2,085,287 (source 2013 United States Census Bureau estimate).
- New Mexico is the 36th most populous state in the U.S. (source 2013 United States Census Bureau estimate).
- The state flower of New Mexico is the Yucca flower.
- The official nickname of this state is the Land of Enchantment.
- Residents of New Mexico are called New Mexicans.
- Running the entire length of New Mexico, the Rio Grande is New Mexico's longest river.
- "O Fair New Mexico" is the state song, chosen in 1917.
Interesting New Mexico Facts
- The world's largest international hot air balloon festival is held annually in Albuquerque, NM.
- With the lowest water to land area of any of the U.S. states, New Mexico's lakes and rivers account for just .002% of the state's surface area.
- One out of every three families in New Mexico speaks Spanish as well as English.
- With just 12 people per square mile, New Mexico is not a heavily populated state. In fact, there are more sheep and cattle in the state than people.
- There were no high schools, colleges or any form of public education in New Mexico until the early 19th century.
- Each year New Mexico attracts visitors to its famous "Whole Enchilada Festival" in Las Cruces, its numerous national forests, authentic moon rocks at the International Space hall of Fame, annual duck races held in the town of Deming, and Carlsbad Caverns (home to tens of thousand of bats).
State of New Mexico Historical Facts
- Remains of numerous sites of the ancient Native American culture, Anasazi, who were Pueblo ancestors, have been identified throughout New Mexico and date back to 1100 AD.
- The history of Native Americans living in New Mexico dates back twenty thousand years.
- The Gadsden Purchase of 1853 was an agreement between Mexico and the United States in which Mexico was paid $10 million by the U.S. for a large piece of Mexico which was later divided into parts of Arizona and New Mexico.
- On July 16, 1945 the United States entered the atomic age by detonated the very first atomic bomb at Trinity Site in New Mexico. In 1975, it was declared a national historic landmark.