Cimarron, New Mexico: A Wild West Story

View coming into Cimarron, New Mexico
The St. James Hotel circa 1880.
St. James Hotel today
This safe at the St. James Hotel served as the bank for the town.

We stopped for lunch at the historic St. James Hotel in Cimarron. “Cimarron” in Spanish means “wild” or “unruly” as a horse. In 1857, as with many western towns, Cimarron gained a reputation for lawlessness. This is evidenced by the bullet holes in the tin ceiling of the dining room where we are eating lunch.

Cimarron is on the mountain branch of the Santa Fe trail and is where the Colorado mountains and plains meet. Everything that happened in the wild west happened in Cimarron: gold mining, conflicts between Indians, Latinos and Anglos, and range wars; stage coaches passed by sheep herders and cattle drives.

I am reading this book, “No Life for a Lady”, a memoir by Agnes Morley Cleveland about growing up in Cimarron during the wild west period. It inspired us to visit.

We enjoyed this little side trip on our way to Colorado Springs.

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