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Collection Details


Collection Name: Roadside Crosses of New Mexico Oral History
Repository Name: University of New Mexico. Zimmerman Library. Center for Southwest Research [Repository Details]
Repository Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States
Local Identifier: MSS 680 BC
URL: http://elibrary.unm.edu/oanm/NmU/nmu1%23mss680bc/nmu1%23mss680bc_m3.html
Dates Spanned: 1992-1996
Description: The purpose of the project was to bring a deeper awareness of the Spanish descanso or roadside cross tradition to the citizens of New Mexico, by documenting the historical origins, the contemporary cultural history, and the geographical locations of descansos in New Mexico. Traditionally, the descanso was a cross placed in the ground to mark the spot where mourners rested the coffin while on the walk from the home of the deceased person to the cemetery. With the introduction of the automobile, the tradition evolved to mark the place of death for victims of traffic or pedestrian accidents.
Estimated Total of Interviews: 35
Broad Subjects: Intellectual life; Sociology
ASP Subjects: Burial; Crosses; Culture; Death; New Mexico; Oral history; Religious articles; Traditions; Traffic fatalities; United States
Collection Code: OHC0000231