Martinez Hacienda, Taos Valley, New Mexico

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    Aerial view of computer model looking northeast.
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    West-facing facade of the hacienda today. The original zaguan doors leading to the interior placita are on the right side.
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    A view along the south side of the hacienda.
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    Reconstructed Plan of Martinez Hacienda. Source: Martinez Hacienda.
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The Severino Martinez Hacienda is perhaps the best surviving example of Spanish-Colonial/Mexican Period "placita"-centered house. Built in 1827, it was the home of Severino Martinez, whose son, Antonio Jose, was the famous Padre Martinez of Taos, made famous by Willa Cather in DEATH COMES TO THE ARCHBISHOP, because of his conflict with Bishop Lamy. The thick-walled adobe structure is a now a museum, managed by the Martinez Family, and can be visited. Built originally for defense against Navajo and Apache Indians, there were no windows or openings in the walls, except for the "zaguan" doors, which allowed passage of wagons. The roof is formed by large tree trunks (vigas) which span the short dimensions of the room blocks. An excellent source on the architectural details of the Martinez Hacienda is TAOS ADOBES, Spanish Colonial & Territorial Architecture of Taos Valley, by Bainbridge Bunting, Jean Lee Booth, and William R. Simms, Jr, Publication Number 2, Fort Burgwin Research Center, Museum of New Mexico Press, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 1964.
© 2009, Dennis R. Holloway Architect