Tertulia Histórica Albuquerque: Illuminating New Mexico: A History of Luminarias and Farolitos
December 19, 2020
2 pm (MST)
Live via Zoom
State Historian Rob Martínez examines the fascinating origins of these uniquely New Mexican cultural expressions. Before there was a Christmas tree, mistletoe, egg nog or Santa Claus, there were luminarias and farolitos lighting the dark paths for ancient New Mexicans, commemorating that long ago tradition of High Mass at midnight. Like most New Mexican traditions, these lights, like Las Posadas, reach back deep into a rich Catholic tradition that is a blend of Spanish, Puebloan, Mexican, and American influences that are still vibrant today. Add the contributions of Asians from places like China and you have a very unique New Mexico religious expression that illuminates New Mexico like no other tradition. State Historian Rob Martínez takes us on a journey to discover where these sacred lights came from.
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State Historian Rob Martínez is a native New Mexican from Albuquerque. A graduate of the University of New Mexico with an M.A. in Latin American history, with an emphasis on New Mexico history. Rob was a research assistant at the Vargas Project, learning research skills and paleography, abilities that would serve him well as a historian. Before becoming state historian in 2019, he was deputy state historian for six years at the New Mexico State Records Center and Archives.