Grants, New Mexico: Wikis


Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Grants, New Mexico
—  City  —
Nickname(s): Uranium Capital of the World
Location of Grants, New Mexico
Coordinates: 35°9′19″N 107°50′32″W / 35.15528°N 107.84222°W / 35.15528; -107.84222Coordinates: 35°9′19″N 107°50′32″W / 35.15528°N 107.84222°W / 35.15528; -107.84222
Country United States
State New Mexico
County Cibola
 - Total 13.7 sq mi (35.4 km2)
 - Land 13.7 sq mi (35.4 km2)
 - Water 0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
Elevation 6,460 ft (1,969 m)
Population (2008)
 - Total ~ 10,500
 Density 644.4/sq mi (248.8/km2)
Time zone Mountain (MST) (UTC-7)
 - Summer (DST) MDT (UTC-6)
ZIP code 87020
Area code(s) 505
FIPS code 35-30490
GNIS feature ID 0933386
The Grants Mining Museum, next to Historic Route 66.

Grants is a city in Cibola County, New Mexico, United States. The population was 8,806 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Cibola County.[1]

Grants began as a railroad camp in the 1880s, when three Canadian brothers were awarded a contract to build a section of the new Atlantic and Pacific Railroad through the region. The Grant brothers' camp was first called Grants Camp, then Grants Station, and finally Grants. The new city enveloped the existing colonial New Mexican settlement of Los Alamitos and grew along the tracks of the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad.

The town prospered as a result of railroad logging in the nearby Zuni Mountains, and served as a section point for the Atlantic and Pacific, which became part of the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe railroad empire. The Zuni Mountain Railroad short line had a roundhouse in town (near present day Exit 81 off Interstate 40) and housed workers in a small community named Breecetown. Timber from the Zuni Mountains was shipped to Albuquerque where a large sawmill converted the timber to wood products that were sold around the west.

After the decline of logging in the 1930s, Grants gained fame as the "carrot capital" of the United States. Agriculture was aided by the creation of Bluewater Reservoir, and the region's volcanic soils provided ideal conditions for farming. Grants also benefited from its location on U.S. Route 66, which brought tourists and travelers and the businesses that catered to them.

Perhaps the most memorable boom in the town's history occurred when Paddy Martinez, a Navajo shepherd, discovered uranium ore near Haystack Mesa, sparking a mining boom that lasted until the 1980s (see Uranium mining in New Mexico). The collapse of mining pulled the town into a depression, but the town has enjoyed a resurgence based on interest in tourism and the scenic beauty of the region. Recent interest in nuclear power has revived the possibility of more uranium mining in the area, and energy companies still own viable mining properties and claims in the area.



Grants is located at 35°9′19″N 107°50′32″W / 35.15528°N 107.84222°W / 35.15528; -107.84222 (35.155269, -107.842099).[2]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 13.7 square miles (35.4 km²), all of it land. Grants is on the north end of the large and recent (youngest flows around 3,000 years old) lava field known as "El Malpais" (the badlands), part of which is preserved as El Malpais National Monument. To the northeast of town are the San Mateo Mountains and Mount Taylor, at 11,301 feet the highest peak in the region. West of the city is the Continental Divide and the Zuni Mountains, an eroded anticline with 2 billion year old Precambrian granites and metamorphic rocks at its core. The region is primarily high desert country, dominated by sandstones and lava flows.


As of the census[3] of 2000, there were 8,806 people, 3,202 households, and 2,321 families residing in the city. The population density was 644.4 people per square mile (248.7/km²). There were 3,626 housing units at an average density of 265.3/sq mi (102.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 56.18% White, 1.62% African American, 11.97% Native American, 0.92% Asian, 0.12% Pacific Islander, 24.80% from other races, and 4.38% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 52.36% of the population.

There were 3,202 households out of which 37.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.5% were married couples living together, 17.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 27.5% were non-families. 24.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.61 and the average family size was 3.06.

In the city the population was spread out with 28.8% under the age of 18, 9.3% from 18 to 24, 27.9% from 25 to 44, 21.7% from 45 to 64, and 12.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 85.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 79.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $30,652, and the median income for a family was $33,464. Males had a median income of $31,870 versus $20,808 for females. The per capita income for the city was $14,053. About 19.4% of families and 21.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 31.8% of those under age 18 and 11.1% of those age 65 or over.

91% of Grants is Christian. About 75% of the town is Catholic, 16% Protestant, about 6% is Atheistic, and 2% other.

Grants' only Catholic Church, St. Teresa


All public schools in the county are operated by Grants/Cibola County Schools.

Seven elementary schools, one midde school and two high schools serve Grants/Cibola County.

Los Alamitos Middle School and Grants High School serve Grants.

St. Teresa of Avila Catholic School is the only private accredited school in Grants and serves grades Pre-Kindergarten through Eighth Grades.

There is a branch of New Mexico State University. The branch offers a two-year postsecondary program as well as advanced degrees through distance education.





Grants in popular culture

  • Author Robison Wells has stated that, in his novel On Second Thought, the town of Alamitos is based on Grants, NM, which is the historical name before it was renamed after the mining camp.[4] Wells lived in Grants during the late 1990s.
  • Scenes from the movie 21 Grams starring Sean Penn and Naomi Watts were also filmed in Grants.
  • In the Louis L'Amour book Flint, Los Alamitos (Grants) and the nearby El Malpais provided some of the settings for the main character in the book.


  1. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  2. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2000 and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2005-05-03. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  4. ^ Questions about On Second Thought

External links

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
(Redirected to Grants article)

From Wikitravel

The Grants Mining Museum, next to Route 66.
The Grants Mining Museum, next to Route 66.

Grants [1] is a small town in western New Mexico, United States. It was established by three Canadian brothers who had the contract to build a section of the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad through the area in the 1880's. It is one of the stops along the historic Route 66 highway west of Albuquerque, New Mexico's largest city. After the construction of the railroad, Grants survived as a rail and lumber town, serving as a section point on the Santa Fe Railroad and terminus for short line logging railroads that operated in the Zuni Mountains. The Mormon farmers up the road at Bluewater helped it gain prominence as the "carrot capital" of the US. Grants expanded dramatically during the 1950s as a result of the discovery of rich uranium ore in the area. A crash in the uranium market around 1980 seriously damaged the town's economy, but in recent years it has recovered somewhat.

Get in

Grants is about 75 miles from Albuquerque by car, along Interstate 40, which at this point follows the historic Route 66. Albuquerque International Sunport is the nearest major airport. Grants is not presently served by any commuter airlines, but it's so close to Albuquerque that you might as well drive anyway.

Get around

Grants sprawls more than its current population would suggest. It's not large, but many of the motels are near the Interstate and fairly far out of downtown, such as it is. As such, driving or cycling are the preferred modes of transport. A bike is handy for around town, but a car is a must for getting to the various nearby attractions.

Public transport in the form of a local bus line is available; call the Grants/Cibola County Chamber of Commerce at 505-287-4608 for more information. Schedules tend to be irregular. No taxi services exist in the city.

  • The New Mexico Mining Museum chronicles the region's uranium-mining history. 100 N. Iron Avenue; open 9-4 M-S; admission $3, students and seniors $2.
  • It's rare for a scenic turnout/rest area along an Interstate to be worth mentioning in a "See" entry, but two exceptions are nearby. A viewpoint between Albuquerque and Grants gives a striking view of the "Sky City" at Acoma Pueblo. Further west, another scenic turnout offers views into one of the continental United States' most recent volcanic basalt flows, erupted from a vent a few miles south of the highway some time in the last 2000 years (estimates for the age vary).
  • Grants is a good base for visiting the western pueblos of New Mexico. Acoma, Laguna, and Zuni are all nearby, and offer much to the visitor interested in the Pueblo Nations. Acoma recently opened a fabulous new cultural center at the base of Sky City; visitors seeking to tour the pueblo must check in here for their tour. Feast days, pow-wows, and various events throughout the year keep things interesting at all three pueblos.


Like most small communities, Grants has its share of local events and festivals. Call the Chamber of Commerce at 505-287-4802 or the Northwest New Mexico Visitor Center at 505-876-2783 for more information.

The Northwest New Mexico Visitor Center, on the east side of the city at Exit 85 off I-40, is a good place to get oriented with the area. Exhibits in the center highlight the many outdoor recreation opportunities in the region. The center's theater shows the award-winning short documentary "Remembered Earth," a wonderful film that reveals the story of the regions landscapes. The USDA Forest Service, National Park Service, and Bureau of Land Management all cooperate to run the center.

The primary draw of the region is the enticing mix of outdoor recreation and cultural sites. With two national parks, a national forest district, a Bureau of Land Management conservation area, designated wilderness, and a nearby state park, there's plenty for the outdoor recreation seeker to do out here. Cycling, cross country skiing, hiking, birdwatching, astronomy, photography, jeeping, ATV riding, horseback riding; it's all possible in the area.

For those interested in the cultures of New Mexico, the three nearby pueblos and the Navajo Nation offer many opportunities to get acquainted with the Native Americans of the region. Feast days, fairs, and other events are usually open to the public, and tours of the pueblos are usually available. Acoma has a very well organized tour enterprise that makes it easy to visit the pueblo. Zuni has a visitor center and museum, and Laguna allows visits to the San Jose mission church.


Grants itself is not a particularly notable source of art or memorabilia, but its proximity to Navajo Nation as well as Acoma, Laguna, and Zuni means that American Indian arts and crafts are widely available. Several trading posts operate in the Grants/Milan area; the most comprehensive selection is at Elkins Chaco Canyon Trading Company, just east of Exit 79 in Milan. See under Get out below for information on an interesting series of Navajo rug auctions; finding lodging in Grants is a good idea if you're attending this auction, there being no lodging near the auction site.

  • La Ventana, one block north of Santa Fe avenue on Geis Street, has delicious steaks and New Mexican cuisine. Non-smoking and open late.
  • El Cafecito, 820 E Santa Fe Avenue, +1 505 285-6229. A local favorite for basic New Mexican cuisine including Navajo Tacos and Blue Corn.
  • El Ranchero, 705 Highway 66 (in Milan), +1 505 876-1032. Has killer hot red chile.
  • Wow Diner, 1300 Motel Drive (off Exit 79 in Milan), +1 505 287-3801. A newly opened restaurant sheathed in stainless steel with a great menu.
  • The chains include Denny's, Subway, Blake's Lotaburger, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, Domino's Pizza, and Sonic Drive-In.
  • Canton Cafe, 1212 E. Santa Fe Ave., +1 505 287-8314, [2] serves Chinese food at a low price. Quite crowded during lunch and dinner.


A few watering holes exist here. They are a bit on the rough side; tippler beware. All are located along Santa Fe Avenue, which is also Route 66 through Grants and Milan.

  • Outlaws often features live music acts or DJs, and has pool tables and big screen televisions.
  • The Sailfish Lounge has the usual pool tables and bar. Pool tournaments are often held here.
  • Pat's Lounge is the usual pool tables and bar sort of place as well.
  • La Ventana Restaurant has a small but pleasant bar for a more mellow atmosphere.
  • Rookie's Sports Bar is in the Best Western near Exit 85 on the east side of town. Pool tables and big screen televisions are available.


Most of the usual motel/motor-lodge chains can be found near I-40 exits. Best Western, Days Inn, Holiday Inn (Express), Super 8, Travelodge and the Choice Hotels collection (specifically, a Quality Inn) all have franchises. Most are not fully booked during most of the year, but reservations are a good idea at peak travel times, and also during the first or second week in October, when the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta fills hotels and motels up to a hundred miles away.

For the more adventurous, some old Route 66 classics are still hanging on along the Mother Road on the east side of town. Check out the Leisure Lodge, the Southwest Motor Lodge, the Desert Sun Motel, the Franciscan, and the El Dorado Motel for more budget oriented accommodations.

  • El Malpais National Monument is a rugged national park that offers hiking and a chance to explore lava flows, lava-tube caves, and volcanos.
  • The area is surrounded by the Cibola National Forest, Mount Taylor Ranger District. This district includes the Zuni Mountains to the southwest of Grants, and Mount Taylor and the San Mateo Mountains to the northeast of Grants. Gooseberry Springs Trail provides hikers with access to the summit of Mount Taylor, the region's highest peak at 11,301 feet. Many forest roads allow mountain bikers, jeepers, and hikers to easily access the forest lands.
  • Nearby El Morro National Monument [3] features historic inscriptions and petroglyphs along with a nice 2 mile hike over the mesa past ancient ruins.
  • The El Malpais National Conservation Area features the famous La Ventana Arch, just 18 miles south of I-40, along with lava flows, cliffs and canyons, two designated wilderness areas, and the Chain of Craters Backcountry Byway.
  • The famous Bandera Volcano and Ice Cave attraction is along New Mexico Highway 53 near the continental divide, and offers two trails that lead into the Ice Cave and into the crater of Bandera Volcano.
  • The Navajo Nation covers much of northwestern New Mexico and offers various points of interest. If interested in Navajo rugs, be sure to check out a rug auction [4] at the tiny town of Crownpoint, an hour north of Grants. Auctions are held on Friday nights every month or two, "usually ... but not always" on the third Friday of the month (see site below for schedule), and are both an opportunity to acquire some quality folk art at excellent prices and a fascinating cultural study.
  • Chaco Culture National Historical Park is 90 miles north of town; Grants is a good place to find lodging if you're bound for Chaco, there being no lodging in the park other than a very basic campground.
Routes through Grants
FlagstaffGallup  W noframe E  AlbuquerqueTucumcari
FlagstaffGallup  W noframe E  AlbuquerqueTucumcari
This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!


Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address