Martines, Colfax County, New Mexico Genealogy

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The town is found to be spelled  MARTINEZ or  MARTINES

Location:                              In a canyon east of Black Lake, about 10 miles west of Miami,

                                            from where county road 21 turns north.  

GPS:                                   Latitude: 36.316424 N;      Longitude: -105.0928 W.


Map:                                    Interactive Map.


Post Office:                          Established 1889 to 1902.

                                            In 1900 the post office was moved out of the canyon to a site northwest

                                            of Laguna Colorada, later called Red Lake, but it retained the name

                                            Martinez until 1902, when it was found that an Albuquerque Post Office

                                            had the same name. Postal authorities suggested a name change,

                                            postal assistant Juan C Lucero suggested Aurora for his daughter.


                                             Renamed Aurora 1902 to 1921. Later mail was sent to Ocate.

                                             In 1907, Lucero, now Postmaster, moved the store he owned and

                                             the Aurora post office south to Wheaton Creek, just within Mora

                                             County, 7 miles north of Ocate. Nothing remains of these communities.


Census Data:                        1880 US Federal Census - Closest enumeration districts are Ocate

                                             in Mora County, or Rayado and Cimarron in Colfax County.

                                            Alphabetic list of households in 1900 US Federal Census, click here


In the 1800's friends and relatives of Padre Antonio Jose Martinez, settled in a canyon east of Black Lake. the canyon took their surname. And, the town was named for Don Marcelino V. Epimenio Martinez, born July 17, 1859 in Taos New Mexico, and the first Postmaster. He was a grand nephew of Father Antonio Martinez. He served three years in the Union Army during the Civil War, and then became, a very influential person filling many official posts including Sheriff of Taos County, Deputy US Marshall, Justice of the Peace(1887), Probate Judge (1888), Territorial Sheep Inspector (1897-1905). About 1881, he moved to Colfax County and established a sheep and cattle ranch, wherein sprang the town of Martinez. He established a store and a school. He owned about 7,500 acres and known to be one of the richest men in the county. After 12 years he moved to Moulding Place, 6 miles east of Wagon Mound, the town continued to survive, even as Mr. Martinez became the postmaster of Wagon Mound. He was commissioned by the Territorial Governor to represent the Territory of New Mexico at the 1900 Exposition in Paris, France, where he met with the French President.  

Family history links:

1. Epimenio Martinez, family history.


1. History of New Mexico: Its resources and People. George B Anderson. 1905. Volume 2, page 658-9. Google Books.

2. The Place Names of New Mexico, by Robert Hixson Julyan, page 25. Google Books.