WPA Mrs. Lorencita Miranda


Writer: Edith L. Crawford,

Carrizozo, N. Mex.

Date: May 5, 1939


Topic: Pioneer Story


Source of Information:

Mrs. Lorencita Miranda,

Lincoln, New Mexico.




I was born August 10, 1861, in the town of Las Placitas, New Mexico, in Socorro County, New Mexico. (Las Placitas is now the town of Lincoln, and is in Lincoln County, New Mexico.) My father Gregorio Herrera married my mother Gerelda Torres in Manzano, New Mexico, about the year 1860. They moved to Las Placitas New Mexico, and I was born there. On August 18th, 1861, about ten days after I was born, my father was killed in a drunken row, in Las Placitas. Another man was killed at the same time and we never were sure who did kill my father. After Father's death my mother went back to Manzano to live with her people. My mother gave me to one of my aunts, Trinidad Herrera, (who was nick-named Chinita) who, with my mother moved back to Las Placitas when I was about two years old. I have lived the rest of my life in Lincoln County. I will soon be 78 years old.

In the year 1869, when I was eight years old, all of the territory lying east of the Mal Pais, was created into Lincoln County, and the county seat was established at Las Placitas and the name was changed to Lincoln.

I was married to Jose Delbros Miranda in January 1877. We were married in the Catholic Church at the Torres Ranch, by Father Sambrano Tafoya of Manzano, New Mexico. This church is about six miles west of Lincoln, New Mexico. I remember that we had to walk about five miles to the church to get married.

My husband had a two roomed adobe house built for us to live in. It had a dirt floor. We had no stove and I had to cook on the fireplace. All eight of my children were born in Lincoln. Seven of them are dead and buried there. My youngest son, Emelio Miranda, is married and has twelve children. He lives in Lincoln and is the post-master there. One of my grandsons lives with me on my little farm, a half mile west of the town of Lincoln. I raise a few chickens and a small garden which helps to keep me busy.

The house where I was born in Las Placitas (now Lincoln) stood on the site of the old Laws Sanitarium. The place then belonged to Sabino Gonzales, who was one of the men that helped build the old Torreon in 1855. My father-in-law Felipe Miranda also helped to build the Torreon. This old Torreon was rebuilt and dedicated in 1935, by the Chaves County Archaeological and Historical Society.

My husband and I were living on our farm just above Lincoln, New Mexico, all during the Lincoln County War. We liked both factions so we never took any part in the war. I remember the day the McSween home was burned. We could see the flames and smoke from our house but we stayed at home for we were scared to death to stick our heads out of the house. We could also hear some of the shooting. Billy the Kid came to our house several times and drank coffee with us. We liked him for he was always nice to the Spanish people and they all liked him.

My Aunt, Chinita Herrera, started to walk to Socorro, New Mexico, to see her brother. (I do not remember the year.) She was seen on the road to Socorro by Mrs. Susan McSween Barber who gave her a drink of water and some food. She was not far from a ranch house and Mrs. Barber thought she would get along all right, but my aunt was never seen or heard of again. We never did know what become of her.

My mother married a man by the name of Octaviano Salas, and lived in Lincoln New Mexico, until her death in September 1926.

My husband Jose Deloros Miranda died October 28, 1928, in Lincoln and was buried here.


NARRATOR: Mrs. Lorencita Miranda, Lincoln, New Mexico, Aged 78 years.


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