out as a loose collection of farms along the
river in 1706. Not until the late 1700s were
some houses built near San Felipe de Neri Church
in what we now call
Atrisco on the
is even older than
It too was a collection of farms and ranches,
founded in 1703 as a Spanish Land Grant.
grew, they formed tiny communities named for the
most prominent family. In following decades
had such satellite communities as Los Duranes,
Los Candelarias, Los Griegos, Los Montaños, Los
Poblanos, and Los Gallegos. Most were annexed to
the city in the late 1940s.
Los Barelas is typical of these enclaves. Around
1825 Antonio Sandoval, a rancher, dug an
extension of the old Griegos-Candelaria Ditch
across the valley and south along the sand hills
at the valley edge to bring water to the fields
south of Albuquerque.
More farmers moved in, and soon a small village
was formed, called Los Barelas after the largest
family in the area.
In the North
is named for an Indian pueblo that once existed
in that area.
Corrales, named for the corrals of landowner
Juan González, dates from the 1700s. It remained
a Spanish farming village until after World War
II, when artists and writers began to restore
old adobe houses.
In 1763 San
Miguel de Carnué started on a Spanish
Land Grant east of Albuquerque.
Martineztown started when families in the 1800s
drove their herds east to the sand hills for
summer grazing and camped. The area had a large
acequia. Around 1850, Manuel Martín and his wife
Anna María decided to settle permanently, and
the area came to be known as Los Martínes, and
later, Martineztown. Today Martineztown is
bounded by Broadway, I-25,
Martin Luther King Blvd.
and Mountain Road.
After the Railroad
spawned a second town, a new commercial
district. It became known as New Town,
and the original community became
The first developers
hired civil engineer Walter Marmon to design and
lay out the streets of New Town. A Midwesterner,
Marmon stuck with the familiar. He laid out a
grid of numbered north-south streets. He named
the main street parallel to the railroad tracks
Broadway because he thought a proper city should
have a Broadway. The major arterial was already
In 1880, the same
year the railroad arrived, Franz Huning started
his Highland Addition east of the
railroad between Copper and Iron. It was
master-planned suburb. Huning’s new subdivision,
with its Midwestern-style Queen Anne homes drew
merchants, doctors and professionals. (After a
period of decline, the neighborhood is now
fashionable again and many of the century-old
homes are renovated. Huning Highland was named a
national historic district in 1979 and a city
historic overlay zone in 1981.)
The second housing development was the Perea
Addition of José L. Perea, better known as the
Downtown Neighborhood District, west of New Town
In 1881 Sister Blandina Segale wrote: “I predict
this Old Town Albuquerque will not long remain
the metropolis.” Two years earlier when she
arrived here, “there was not a house where the
railroad station is now but the houses are
springing up like mushrooms.”
North of New Town was the Mandell Addition,
platted in 1880. Located around Fourth and
(now Lomas), it became known as the McClellan
Park Neighborhood. This was a thriving
turn-of-the-century residential neighborhood
outside the city limits. Residents converted an
old apple orchard into
named in 1919 by prominent citizen William
McClellan for his wife and mother. The
McClellans lived adjacent to the park. The
neighborhood faded away as auto dealerships grew
along Fourth Street,
which was a part of Route 66 through
for a time, and railroad-related warehouses went
in near the tracks. You can still see a few of
the modest and charming older houses tucked away
on First, Second, and Third streets.
wholesale grocer Martin Stamm filed a plat for
the Terrace Addition to sell house lots south of
Central to Hazeldine and east of the city limits
in the area of present-day TVI. Local people
thought it was too far away; it then took an
hour by horse and buggy to get there. This
addition includes the Silver Hill neighborhood
west of Yale on Gold and Silver. There were no
water lines, so Stamm drilled his own well and
provided water to residents.
D.K.B. Sellers was one of the busiest developers
of the period. In 1906 he built
University Heights south
of Central from Yale to Girard. He
described it as the
“coming aristocratic section of
Albuquerque.” He too
provided his own waterworks. His two-story water
tank is incorporated to a house at 319 Carlisle
SE. The next subdivision was the Valley View
Addition in 1911.
Both were well outside city limits on the
East Mesa. Promoters offered clean
air (“Escape the Coal Smoke of Downtown”) and
rural life, and the automobile made commuting
In the early 1900s American Lumber Co.’s
sawmill north and east of
began processing logs from the
in western New Mexico.
By 1908 it was the largest manufacturing company
in the Southwest. It employed more than 1,000
men in Albuquerque.
Nearby workers built their homes of wood or
adobe. This became the Sawmill Neighborhood.
The railroad had a similar impact on the
one-time farming community of Los Barelas. The
railroad built its shops east of Barelas on what
is now 2nd
the railroad would employ hundreds of men, and
new subdivisions sprang up to house them. To
this day Barelas has two distinct types of homes
– the adobes of the early Hispanic settlers and
the later brick and frame homes.
In the same way the Eastern
Addition, across the tracks from Barelas, sprang
up in 1888 to provide housing to railroad
workers. Farther south the community of
San José began, probably
after 1880, when Hispanic and some black workers
at the Santa Fe
shops and tie-treating plant settled.
After 1910 only one area bordering on downtown
remained undeveloped – a swampy
area between the old
Barelas Road and the
Rio Grande. A real estate
company platted the Raynolds Addition between
Eighth Street and the city limits (roughly at
Seventeenth) in 1912, but little building took
place until the late 1930s and 1940s because the
city didn’t have water and sewer lines in place.
The neighborhood is now a combination of small
houses built in the 1920s and Southwestern style
apartment houses built in the late 1930s and
The first housing boom was in 1922 with the
Country Club Addition, named for the club to the
east. Later known as
this neighborhood has a variety of architectural
styles from the period between the two world
Development began in 1925 on
on the East Mesa.
Parkland Hills, Knob
Heights, Monte Vista
and College View followed in 1926. Seventeen
subdivisions sprouted in quick succession.
In 1928 lawyer William Keleher and contractor
A.R. Hebenstreit acquired land from Franz
Huning’s heirs and platted the Huning Castle
Addition, named for the mansion Huning built on
Central and Fourteenth in 1883. Swamps made much
of the land unattractive for development, but in
1925 the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy organized
and began planning projects to control the river
and drain marshy lands. Albuquerque Country Club
moved from the East Mesa
to its current location in 1928, which added
cache to the development. They only got a few
homes built before the Stock Market Crash of
1929. Most of the homes in this subdivision,
which came to be known as the Country Club
neighborhood, were built after World War II.
The city's biggest
growth spurt came after World War II. As Sandia
Laboratory was born from a division of Los
Alamos Laboratory, a massive influx of new
residents poured onto the
bringing the city's edge to the
in the late 1950s on two major interstate
highways, I-40 and I-25, which intersected near
the center of town.
population swelled from 35,449 in 1940 to
201,189 in 1960, and the once-small
was feeling some big-city growing pains.
In 1950, the city
was rapidly annexing land east and north of its
borders, and subdivisions were spreading toward
the mountains. That year the Saturday
Evening Post wrote of
Albuquerque, “New houses
go up in batches of 50 to 300 at a time and
transform barren mesas before you get back from
lunch.” In the four years between 1946 and 1950
the city’s area tripled.
In 1950, Sam Hoffman
built the 800-home Hoffmantown Addition north of
Menaul and east of .
In 1953, Ed Snow's Snow Heights Addition
followed directly south.
The Bel-Air subdivision, built by Harvey
Golightly, initially wanted to incorporate as a
separate village. The homes, between
Mateo, Menaul and
Candelaria, sold quickly.
It was annexed into the city in 1951.
1954, Dale Bellamah's 1,600-home Princess Jeanne
Park, named for his wife, was built between
from Eubank to Juan Tabo. Princess Jeanne
offered “wife-planned” homes with fireplaces,
spacious patios and such new products as
linoleum, Formica and Pulverator disposals.
In the early 1950s
Bellamah also built the Kirtland Addition just
west of the airport. The first residents were
white officers from the base. In 1952 Bill
Gooden was the first African American to move
in. In a 1991 interview he recalled no problems
in integrating the neighborhood: “I met my
neighbors on both sides and across the street,
and we got along well and we enjoyed living
People east of the river sometimes think
just exploded in the last few years. In fact,
neighborhoods are as old as much of the
development began in 1951, when homebuilder Leon
Watson bought land from Florencio Baca, who had
lived there since 1936. The development between
Central and Bridge near Coors became
Two other West Side
subdivisions date from the post-war boom.
In 1949 the Black
family, which owned the Seven Bar Ranch on the
sold 8,000 acres to Horizon Land Corp., and in
1961 it began developing Paradise Hills. By 1981
Paradise Hills had 1,800 homes on 12,000 acres
and 6,000 residents. The Blacks in 1947 had
built a general aviation airport, which became
home of Cottonwood Mall.
Taylor Ranch and
Eagle Ranch followed in the 1970s.