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Alamo Ranch, a Story of New Mexico

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ISBN: 9781318040070
Publisher: iBooksPlace-1
Publication Date: 2016-06-23
Number of pages: 132
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This volume is from 1903.

From Chapter I:

It is autumn; and the last week in November.
In New Mexico, this land of sunshine, the sea-
son is now as kindly as in the early weeks of our
Northern September.

To-day the sky is one cloudless arch of sapphire!
The light breeze scarce ruffles a leaf of the tall
alamo, the name tree of this ranch. Here any
holding bigger than a kitchen garden is known as
a ranch. The alamo, Spanish for poplar, lends
here and there its scant, stiff shade to this roomy
adobe dwelling, with its warm southern frontage
and half-detached wings. Behind the house irregu-
lar out-buildings are scattered about.

A commodious corral, now the distinguished
residence of six fine Jersey cows, lies between the
house and the orchard, a not over-flourishing
collection of peach, apricot, and plum trees.

Here and there may be seen wide patches of
kitchen garden, carefully intersected by irrigating
ditches.

Near and afar, wide alfalfa fields with their stiff
aftermath stretch away to the very rim of the mesa,
where the cotton-tail makes his home, and sage-
brush and mesquite strike root in the meagre soil.
Cones of alfalfa hay stacked here and there out-
line themselves like giant beehives against the soft
blue sky; and over all lies the sunny silence of a
cloudless afternoon with its smiling westering sun.

Basking in this grateful warmth, their splint
arm-chairs idly tilted against the house-front, the
boarders look with sated invalid eyes upon this
gracious landscape.

Alamo Ranch is a health resort. In this thin,
dry air of Mesilla Valley, high above the sea level,
the consumptive finds his Eldorado. Hither, year
by year, come these foredoomed children of men to
fight for breath, putting into this struggle more
noble heroism and praiseworthy courage than some-
times goes to victory in battle-fields.

Of these combatants some are still buoyed by the
hope of recovery; others are but hopeless mortals,
with the single sad choice of eking out existence
far from friends and home, or returning to native
skies, there to throw up hands in despair and suc-
cumb to the foe.

Sixteen miles away the Organ Mountains
seeming, in this wonderfully clear atmosphere,
within but a stone's throw loom superbly against
the cloudless sky; great hills of sand are these,
surmounted by tall, serrated peaks of bare rock,
and now taking on their afternoon array in the
ever-changing light, rare marvels of shifting color,
amethyst and violet, rosy pink, creamy gold, and
dusky purple.

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