New Mexico Historic Sites

New Mexico State Monument Designated Historic Landmark

October 16, 2012


SANTA FE, NM October 16, 2012 – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced yesterday the designation of  San José de los Jémez Mission and Gíusewa Pueblo Site, as “one of 26 national historic landmarks… that possess exceptional value and quality in illustrating or interpreting the heritage of the United States.” The Department of the Interior’s press release may be accessed here:

San José de los Jémez Mission and Gíusewa Pueblo Site, a short drive from Albuquerque and Bernalillo, is part of the Jemez State Monument Heritage Area and is one of six New Mexico State Monuments.

At the site are the remarkable stone ruins of a 500 year old Indian village and the San José de los Jemez church dating to 1610 (about ten years before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock).

The village of Gíusewa was built in the narrow San Diego Canyon by the ancestors of the present-day people of Jemez (Walatowa) Pueblo. The name “Gíusewa” is a Towa word that in English means “place at boiling water” because the Pueblo is located near a thermal spring.

The Jémez participated in the Spanish Revolt in 1680 yet suffered a heavy defeat when 12 years later the Spanish returned. The survivors abandoned their villages and joined neighboring  Acoma, Zuni, Laguna, and Hopi Pueblos. The site then fell into ruins.

In 1849 Gíusewa Pueblo was rediscovered during a US Topographical Corps land survey. Tourists, scholars, and photographers began to visit the ruins with the first excavation taking place in 1910.

In 1921 the Museum of New Mexico and the School of American Research were gifted the land and in 1935 the site was declared a State Monument.

Monument manager Rick Reycraft said,; "This designation is the result of several years of joint effort by the New Mexico State Monuments, the National Park Service, and the Pueblo of Jemez. We are very pleased to finally see Gíusewa and San José de los Jemez receive the national recognition that this site deserves."

Upcoming at the Monument is the annual “Light Among the Ruins,” on December 15 beginning at 5 p.m. Free.

Media Contact:

Steve Cantrell, PR Manager




 Public Information:

Hours: 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday. Closed Mondays and & Tuesdays.

Admission: $3. A combination ticket, good for admission to both Jémez and Coronado State Monuments is available for $5. Sunday admission for New Mexico residents with ID is free. Wednesday admission is free to New Mexico Seniors with ID. Children 16 and under are always admitted free.

New Mexico State Monuments are operated by the Department of Cultural Affairs.




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