cover image of The WPA Guide to New Mexico

The WPA Guide to New Mexico

The Colorful State

by Federal Writers' Project


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During the 1930s in the United States, the Works Progress Administration developed the Federal Writers' Project to support writers and artists while making a national effort to document the country's shared history and culture. The American Guide series consists of individual guides to each of the states. Little-known authors—many of whom would later become celebrated literary figures—were commissioned to write these important books. John Steinbeck, Saul Bellow, Zora Neale Hurston, and Ralph Ellison are among the more than 6,000 writers, editors, historians, and researchers who documented this celebration of local histories. Photographs, drawings, driving tours, detailed descriptions of towns, and rich cultural details exhibit each state's unique flavor.
The WPA Guide to New Mexico certainly shows how this Southwest state earned its nickname the “Colorful State." The blended influence of Native American, Spanish, and Anglo-American cultures account for the Land of Enchantment's distinct flavor, thoroughly captured in the guide's stunning photography as well as in its many essays on art, folklore, and language.

Publication Details

Trinity University Press
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The WPA Guide to New Mexico
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