Marc Simmons: A tale behind Bandelier National Monument

"At the age of 12, I first visited the Bandelier National Monument, squeezed between the Rio Grande on the east and the Jemez Mountains on the west. That was more than 60 years ago, and to this day, I have not lost my fascination with the place.

The monument, established in 1916, lies within a forested wilderness area containing cliff dwellings, pueblo village sites and miles of prehistoric trails. Sadly, much of the back country was ravaged by last year's Las Conchas Fire.

The name Bandelier derives from Swiss-born Adolph F. Bandelier, who, as a boy, was brought to Illinois by his parents. He grew up encouraged by his father to become a businessman.

He tried that early in life and was miserable. His true vocation lay in history and archaeology. In 1880, Bandelier obtained a yearly stipend from the Archaeological Institute of America, allowing him to head for the Southwest and devote himself to scholarly investigation."

Get the Story:
Marc Simmons: Trail Dust: Bandelier's monumental tale (The Santa Fe New Mexican 4/7)

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