Women of the Land of Enchantment

As I drove through New Mexico on my way to and from Los Alamos, I savored the landscape and pondered "The Land of Enchantment." As with women from every other state, women with ties to New Mexico have made significant contributions to U.S. history and culture. Match the woman with her accomplishment:

____ 1. Built a house that today still serves as an arts and education center in Taos.
____ 2. Known for her paintings of large, colorful flowers as well as New Mexico landscapes. A museum dedicated to her work is in Santa Fe.
____ 3. Won the New Mexico Women's Amateur Golf Tournament in 1969 when she was 12 years old.
____ 4. Developed black-on-black pottery at the San Ildefonso Pueblo. Today, her pottery can fetch up to $500,000.
____ 5. The owner of a construction company who was born and raised in New Mexico, she is the first woman and first Hispanic to co-own a Major League Baseball team (the Colorado Rockies).

A. Maria Montoya Martinez
B. Mabel Dodge Luhan
C. Georgia O'Keeffe
D. Nancy Lopez
E. Linda Alvarado

Born into the San Ildefonso Pueblo in northern New Mexico, Maria Montoya Martinez learned the art of pottery as a youth. After producing the traditional black-on-red pottery, by the 1910s, Maria and her husband began experimenting and produced black-on-black pottery. Pottery was now demanded by art collectors and others outside of her Pueblo - thus Maria helped enable others in her community to make a living. She is credited with helping Pueblo pottery be a living tradition within Native American Art. Some of her pots today can fetch prices as high as $500,000.

Known as an art patron and writer, Mabel Dodge Luhan's legacy is The Mabel Dodge Luhan House in Taos, New Mexico that has served as a center for arts and education in Taos for nearly 100 years. After living in Europe, Luhan returned to the U.S. and began an art salon in New York City over which she presided from 1913 to 1916. By 1918, she had taken up residence in Taos, attracted by the need to save the art of Native Americans. Her home was completed by 1919 and she began to receive visitors from across the arts spectrum - artists of all types including photographers, painters, sculptors, writers, anthropologists, and dance choreographers. In addition, she published her memoirs in multiple volumes. Today, the House provides workshops and meeting space throughout the year.

Internationally known artist Georgia O'Keeffe first traveled to New Mexico in 1929. After living there part time for twenty years, it became her permanent home in 1949. O'Keeffe is well known for her colorful flower paintings, cityscapes, her landscape work, and her depictions of bones against desert skies. Although her last unassisted painting was produced when she was 72 years old, her later work resulted from her working with assistants to produce art as she "could still what I want to paint." Her work has been featured on U.S. postage stamps and O'Keeffe has been inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame.

Golfer Nancy Lopez grew up in Roswell, New Mexico and won her first amateur golf tournament (New Mexico Women's Amateur) when she was 12 years old (in 1969). Lopez turned professional after two years at the University of Tulsa. Named Player of the Year four times over the course of her career, she was the first woman to be named the recipient of the Frances Ouimet Award which recognizes lifelong contributions to golf. She won 48 Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) tour events as well as three major championships.

Growing up in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with five brothers in a home without indoor plumbing, Linda Alvarado today is President and CEO of Alvarado Construction. Her interest in construction began when she worked for a landscape contractor while attending college. Asked to sit on her first corporate board when she was 27 years old, Alvarado was part of the group that successfully bid to own a Major League Baseball League (MLB) team - the Colorado Rockies in Denver, Colorado. The first woman and the first Hispanic to co-own a MLB team, Alvarado has been inducted into both the Colorado Women's Hall of Fame and the National Women's Hall of Fame.

Learn about more she-roes and celebrate amazing women. These women associated with the Land of Enchantment are among the more than 850 women profiled in the book Her Story: A Timeline of the Women Who Changed America. We celebrate their pioneering accomplishments.