Southwest and Travel/Recreation

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Ghost Towns Alive: Trips to New Mexico's Past

Linda G. Harris
Photographs by Pamela Porter

The first book of the twenty-first century on New Mexico's ghost towns, this illustrated survey is based on research, interviews, and the travels of author Linda Harris and photographer Pamela Porter. They have divided the state into eleven regions comprising seventy ghost towns, from the Santa Fe Trail and Colfax County in the north to the southern mountains and the boot heel at the other end of New Mexico.
For this writing, Harris has redefined ghost town to refer not just to permanently abandoned places but also to those that have declined without necessarily dying. She sheds light on the ways some towns have survived and how some have reinvented themselves, like Madrid and Cerrillos, former mining towns turned artistic and bohemian enclaves.
All the towns in this book are accessible. Many have their own web sites and most have benefited from the efforts of preservation-minded residents and museum curators. Roads have been improved, churches restored, and schools have been transformed into community centers, libraries, or residences. Ghost Towns Alive will certainly entice New Mexicans and out-of-state tourists alike to pack a lunch and hit the road. Don't forget to bring walking shoes and your camera!


Linda G. Harris, a Las Cruces resident, has been traveling and writing about New Mexico for twenty-five years. Her books on water resources, architecture, libraries, and history have won several awards, including the Southwest Book Award and the Zia Book Award.

Pamela Porter is a professional photographer whose work has been featured in New Mexico Magazine. She resides in Las Cruces, New Mexico.


"Harris captures the history and spirit of some of the Land of Enchantment's most intriguing places."


El Paso Times

"Stay -at-homes will find this book a pleasure to own; travelers will find it indispensible while visiting New Mexico."


Quarterly of the National Association for Outlaw and Lawman History, Inc.

"A really complete book."


Password El Paso, TX

"Well-researched, well-written, Ghost Towns Alive makes one thing clear: appreciate now, before it's too late."


Great Plains Quarterly

" Ghost Towns Alive is a welcome addition to the travel literature on historic towns, dead or alive, of New Mexico."


New Mexico Historical Review

"Harris leads us through solid succinct history lessons as we tour each town. . . The photos in company are wonderful."


Southwest BookViews

7.25 x 9.75 in. 256 pages 148 halftones, 12 maps