Contact: Wendel Sloan at 505.562.2253
PORTALES — Bill Dunmire, anoted author who is retired from the National Park Service, will speakat Eastern New Mexico University on Monday, April 18, at 7 p.m. in theBecky Sharp Auditorium in the College of Business. It is free and opento the public.
After 28 years with the National Park Service, Dunmire retired asSuperintendent of Carlsbad Caverns National Monument and the GuadalupeMountains National Park. He is now a full-time writer, lecturer, andprofessional photographer, with recent research trips to Spain, Mexico,and throughout the Southwest.
The free public program, sponsored by the Roosevelt County Museum andsupported by the New Mexico Council for the Humanities, will beillustrated with slides taken during research field trips to Spain,Mexico, and throughout the Southwest.
Dunmire's illustrated talk tells the story of how plants and foods madetheir way from Spain to the Southwest, especially colonial New Mexico,and how native Indians brought the new crops and foods into their owncultures. Our menus today connect back to those Hispanic colonial times.
When plants, foods and agriculture from the Old World made their wayfrom Spain to Mexico up the El Camino Real with explorer Onate to thecolonial frontier in northern New Mexico, the Southwest would bechanged forever. Dunmire's presentation will focus on the positivecontributions the Spanish colonizers and missionaries from Columbus, toCortes, to Onate made to New Mexico's agricultural heritage.
"Most people understand the story of how foods from America, such ascorn, beans, and chile traveled around the world after the arrival ofthe Spaniards, but the integration of Old World crops into Puebloan andother native cultures and eventually into our own is an account thatpreviously had been missing from literature. This event representsnothing less than the most significant cultural fusion of agricultureand cuisine in human history," said Dunmire.
His book, "Gardens of New Spain: How Mediterranean Plants and FoodsChanged America," was recently released by the University of TexasPress and will be available for purchase and author signing at theprogram. He has previously co-authored two books on wild plants andtheir use by native peoples of our region.
For more information, contact Dr. Donald Elder III at 505.562.2601.