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Route 66

Information and form taken in part from the original research guide by the late, great Ms. Ann Massmann with updates

Exhibit in the Center for Southwest Research / Fall 2016

Decal, Albuquerque, Crossroads of History, from Ward Hicks Advertising Printing Samples Coll.,  MSS 411 BC, CSWR
The NM Route 66 Exhibit - CSWR, Zimmerman Library, UNM
Ever wonder about those confusing Route 66 signs around Albuquerque and across New Mexico?  Some going North, others going West?  How can that be?  Come to the Route 66 exhibit in Zimmerman Library and see how that came about. 
This year is the 90th anniversary of Route 66 (1926-2016), which for decades was the major highway across the United States, as well as through the heart of New Mexico, and Albuquerque itself.  In 2008 the Center for Southwest Research, at UNM, became a member of the National Park Service Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program and as such was designated as the national repository for New Mexico’s Route 66 history.  The mission of the national repositories is to make materials accessible to researchers and the public for the purpose of education, preservation, and management of the historic Route 66 corridor.  Ten other partnering institutions along the route include:  Autry National Center (CA); Baxter Springs Heritage Center (KS); Illinois State Library; MO State University Special Collections; MO University of Science and Technology;  State Historical Society of MO Research Center - Rolla; Northern AZ University - Cline Library; OK Historical Society; OK State University; and Panhandle - Plains Historical Society (TX).
In keeping with this role, the CSWR has prepared an exhibit about life and travel along Route 66 in New Mexico - with material from over 25 of its archival collections.  Route 66 was exciting for the travelers but Native Americans, Hispanics, Anglo Americans, African Americans and other groups also lived and worked along the road.  On display are a variety of rare photographs, postcards and pamphlets with views of local people, businesses and scenes along the way.  There are neon sign drawings and work orders from the Zeon Sign Company (Electrical Products Co, Albuquerque) for the Liberty Café on Central and Gallup’s Thunderbird Lodge, on Route 66.  Also included are John Gaw Meem’s 1937 specifications for Maisel’s Store on West Central, as well as photos by Paul Secord of Maisel’s priceless Native American murals.  Another display includes the 1946 remodeling plans by Gordon Ferguson (SMPC Architects, Albuquerque) for the Court Café on North Fourth Street, on the pre-1937 Route 66.  Also showing are the drawings of the De Anza Motor Lodge on East Central by George Pearl.  Maps from the 1930s show the turns and changes of the highway, while oral histories and songs reveal the thoughts and memories of those days.  It is really fun, too, to see the old menus from area cafes and restaurants, when a hearty meal only cost .50 cents and bus tokens were .10 cents! 
We hope you will come visit us and see the show,
Nancy Brown Martinez, CSWR, Curator (  -  505-277-6451)
Jennifer Eggleston, CSWR, Assistant Curator
Exhibit co-sponsored by Dr. Audra Bellmore and the John Gaw Meem Archive of Southwestern Architecture
 Postcard, automobile on road between Las Vegas and Santa Fe, in New Mexico, Old Route 66, near Starvation Peak, by Fred Harvey Detours, Detroit, from Postcard Coll., CSWR

NM Route 66 Lecture Series

 Map, courtesy of the New Mexico Historical Review, Mesa Vista Hall, UNM, from article - “A New Deal for Tourists,” by William E. Tydeman, map drawn by Linda Massey, in April 1991 issue 
The NM Route 66 Lecture Series, CSWR, Zimmerman Library, UNM:  Free and Open to Public
1.   September 14, 2016lecture 6:30-7:30, exhibit opening reception to follow, Willard Room, Zimmerman Library, UNM, main campus
Lecture: Prismacolor and Neon: The Craftwork of Mid-Century Route 66 Signs
by Mark Childs, College of Architecture and Planning, UNM
and Ellen Babcock, College of Fine Arts, UNM
2.    September 28, lecture 12:00-1:00, Waters Room
Lecture: Historic Route 66 through New Mexico, by Baldwin Burr, Photoarchivist and Oral Historian, Los Lunas Museum of Heritage and Arts.
3.   October 4, 6:00-6:30 reception, 6:30-7:30 lecture, Waters Room
Lecture: Courageous Motorists: African American Pioneers on Route 66, by Dr. Frank Norris
National Trails Intermountain Region, National Park Service, Santa Fe
4.   October 12, 12:00-1:00 lecture, Waters Room
Lecture: Maisel’s Indian Store: Indian Art on Route 66, by Paul Secord, author of Pecos and Santa Fe’s Historic Hotels
5.   October 18, 6:00-6:30 reception, 6:30-7:30 lectures, Waters Room
The Past as Prelude: Historic Hispanic Crossroads and Corridors along Route 66 through New Mexico, by Dr. Joseph Sanchez, Director, Spanish Colonial Research Center, UNM
Hannett’s Joke”: The Story of New Mexico and the Retribution Road, by Stephen David Mandrgoc, Graduate Student, History Department, UNM.
6.   November 2, 12:00-1:00, Waters Room
Lecture: The Hidden Voices of Route 66, by Dr. David Dunaway, Department of English, UNM
7.   November 9, 12:00-1:00, Waters Room
Introduction: NPS National Trails Intermountain Region and Hispanic Heritage along Route 66 and The Latino Heritage Internship Program, by Angelica Sanchez-Clark, National Trails Intermountain Region, National Park Service, UNM
Lecture: The Hispanic Legacy of Route 66 in the American Southwest, by Lena Anais Guidi, Intern with NTIR, NPS, UNM.
8.   November 16, 12:00-1:00, Waters Room
Lecture: Framing Route 66 across Albuquerque, by Donatella Davanzo, Ph. D. Candidate, American Studies Department, UNM, and Fellow for CSWR Route 66 Photo Survey.
9.   November 30, 12:00-1:00, Waters Room
Lecture: Rerouting Route 66 through Tijeras Canyon, by Roger M. Zimmerman, Ph. D., P. E., President, Albuquerque Historical Society, and History Project Leader
10. December 7, 12:00-1:00, Waters Room,
Lecture: Native Americans on Route 66, by Shawn Kelly and Kristen Reynolds, authors of Route 66 and Native Americans, Cultural Anthropologists
Photo of Tewa Lodge neon sign, on Route 66, Central Avenue, Albuquerque, NM, by Donatella Davanzo, UNM, American Studies, Ph. D. candidate and CSWR Fellow for Route 66 Photo Survey Project 

Campus and Parking Information

Zimmerman Library visiting hours:


Parking at UNM: For evening events, parking is $5 in either Popejoy Hall or Yale St. parking garages.  The Yale parking structure would be your best bet for weekday parking; the rate there is $1 per half hour ($2/hr).   Guests needing to park on the weekend only could park in the C lot on University and Las Lomas all day Saturday and Sunday for free (as long as they are parked in an unmarked stall, not reserve, handicap, pay station, official or service vehicle spaces) because we do limited enforcement on the weekends.

Campus maps: Zimmerman Library is Building # 53


Photo, Algodones, NM, former Buffalo Trading Post, from the Eduardo Fuss Photo Coll., PICT 2011-001, CSWR


Postcard, Route 66 in Tijeras Canyon, by Curt Teich, SW Postcard Co., Albuquerque, from Postcard Coll., CSWR