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Brown Bag Lectures at the Chávez History Library

Watch for the 2017 Brainpower & Brownbags Lecture Schedule Starting in April!

Brainpower & Brownbags will take a 3-month hiatus beginning in January and will return to its monthly schedule on April 5, 2017. The Palace Guard support group has agreed to take on this program, and to sponsor and manage the series so that it can continue to be offered by the History Museum free of charge.

As the Palace Guard plans the 2017 lecture schedule, we invite you to share your ideas and comments. Do you know of a scholar or author who would make a good speaker? Do you have favorite topics in New Mexico history that you’d like to hear more about? For more information or to share your comments, please email the Palace Guard Steering Committee Chairman, Michael Ettema, at

The Palace Guard is a Museum of New Mexico Foundation support group for the New Mexico History Museum and Palace of the Governors. They offer our members a unique array of events and tours that explore the people, places, and stories that help us better understand our region’s history. Funds collected through dues, donations, and programs help the New Mexico History Museum and the Palace of the Governors collect, preserve, and interpret the historical materials of New Mexico and the Southwest. For more information about the Palace Guard please visit

Past Lectures

The Chavez Library has started to video record lunch lectures in 2011. Videos are best viewed with Quicktime.

"Billy the Kid and other New Mexico Legends"
Ray John de Aragon
Wednesday, 01 June 2016

"Kit Carson and Lucien Maxwell, Compadres"
Steve Zimmer
Wednesday, 11 May 2016

"Justice is Coming: An Illustrated History of the Justice System in the Territory and the State of New Mexico"
Charles W. Daniels
Thursday, 21 April 2016

"With 'The Killer President of Guatemala': Reconsidering Ambassador Frank Ortiz"
Michael Cangemi
Wednesday, 30 March 2016

"The French in New Mexico: Tales of Influential, Unusual, and Colorful Characters"
Francois-Marie Patorni
Wednesday, 13 January 2016

"Ladies of the Canyons: Remarkable Women of the Southwest"
Lesley Polling-Kempes
Wednesday, 02 December 2015

"Taco Bell, They Ain't: Short Histories of TexMex, Mexican, and New Mexican Cuisines"
Dale Rice
Wednesday, 25 November 2015

"Harvey Houses of New Mexico: Historic Hospitality from Raton to Deming"
Rosa Latimer
Thursday, 08 October 2015

"Women Marked for History - A NM Historic Marker Project"
Rosanne and Phil Archuletta
Wednesday, 05 August 2015

"Writing about Billy the Kid, Pat Garrett, and Peckinpah"
Paul Seydor
Monday, 20 July 2015

"Inside the NM Senate: A Political History"
Dede Feldman
Wednesday,17 June 2015

"American Original: The Greater Gila Bioregion and NM's Wilderness Legacy"
Madeleine Carey
Wednesday, 06 May 2015

"Fred Harvey and American Indian Art"
Diana Pardue
19 April 2015

"Owning the Sacred: The 1929 Sale of the Santuario de Chimayo"
Brett Hendrickson
Wednesday, 01 April 2015

"Black Pioneers on Route 66"
Frank Norris
Wednesday, 11 March 2015

"Lozen: Apache Warrior Woman"
John McWilliams
Wednesday, 18 February 2015

"Art, Optic, and the Wilderness"
Donald Lawrence
Sunday, 15 February 2015

"Films made in New Mexico: A History"
Jeff Berg
Wednesday, 14 January 2015
[presentation has not been recorded]

"Why Money is Better than Barter: Trade in 18th Century Northern New Mexico"
Linda Tigges
Wednesday, 17 December 2014
[Audio quality is poor - operator's fault - my apologies]

Interview about the Archaeology and History of the Palace of the Governors
Cordelia Thomas Snow with Jon Hunner
Monday, 15 December 2014

Interview about the Archaeology and History of the Palace of the Governors
Stephen Post with Jon Hunner
Monday, 08 December 2014

"New Mexico Beer - Now and Then"
Jon C. Stott
Wednesday, 19 November 2014

"Fred Harvey, Hotel Castaneda, and the Future of the Past in Railroad New Mexico"
Stephen Fried
Wednesday, 29 October 2014

[Alzheimer Workshop] Plenary Talk

[Alzheimer Workshop] Gary Glazer Poetry Workshop

Organizers Gary Glazer and Tom Leech
Saturday, 25 October 2014

"Pinholes to Black Holes"
Ed Fenimore
Friday, 12 October 2014

"A Palace in Need of Repair, 1660-1720"
Dedie Snow
Friday, 22 August 2014

"The Civil War in New Mexico: The War for the Southwest"
Oliver Horn
Thursday, 21 August 2014

"The Life and Misfortunes of Tom Horn"
Larry D. Ball
Monday, 28 July 2014

"The Curious Case of New Mexico's Civil-War Era Slave Code"
John Hays
Wednesday, 18 June 2014

"Pinhole Photography - Projections, Contraptions, Thoughts and Afterthoughts"
Scott McMahon
Wednesday, 14 June 2014

"The Year 1855: Excitement in the Plaza of Taos"
John Ramsay
Wednesday, 21 May 2014

"Passion, Light, and Pinhole Photography"
Nancy Spencer and Eric Renner
Sunday, 27 April 2014

"Contemporary Pinhole Photograph in the West"
Nancy Spencer and Eric Renner
Wednesday, 23 April 2014

"Trees of Life: Our Forests in Peril"
Brian Stout
Wednesday, 05 March 2014

"Land Grants and Water Rights: Fighting Words in the 21st Century"
Stephanie Beninato
Wednesday, 19 February 2014
Permission to record was not granted.

"Witness to the Light: A History of Vernacular Photography in New Mexico"
Andres Armijo
Wednesday, 15 January 2014

"Deconstructing Hacienda de Los Martinez, Ranchitos de Taos"
Cliff Mills
Wednesday, 18 December 2013
Sound recording is low

"Yesterday and Today: Land Grants, 19th Century Federal Policies, and New Mexico Poverty"
Mike Scarborough
Wednesday, 13 November 2013
Our apologies for the technical difficulties at the beginning of the recording

"Hippies, Indians, and the Fight for Red Power"
Sherry Smith
Wednesday, 16 October 2013

"Constructing the Land of Enchantment: Alice Corbin Henderson, Mabel Dodge Luhan, and Mary Austin"
Lois Rudnick
Thursday, 19 September 2013

"Don Diego de Vargas's Two Families"
Rick Hendricks
Wednesday, 04 September 2013

"That Championship Season (1888): The Santa Fe Ancients' Pennant Race of the New Mexico Baseball League."
Jeff Laing
Wednesday, 21 August 2013

"Beyond the Edge: One Photograph, Many Stories, and the Violent World of the Reconstruction West.""
Marni Sandweiss
Wednesday, 24 July 2013

"The Manhattan Project in Los Alamos: An Eyewitness Perspective"
Toni Gibson and Sharon Snyder
Wednesday, 19 June 2013

(supported by the New Mexico Humanities Council)
"Karl May's Winnetou: Imagining Native Americans in 19th and 20th Century Germany"
Michael Wala
Friday, 14 June 2013

"Becoming St. Kate: St. Catherine Indian School and St. Katharine Drexel"
Anna Cabrera
Wednesday, 15 May 2013

"Clyde Tingley's New Deal for New Mexico"
Lucinda Sachs
Wednesday, 17 April 2013

"Women's Visual Narratives of New Mexico between the World Wars"
Joy Sperling
Wednesday, 13 March 2013

"Westward Ho! The Lives and Diaries of the Women Going West"
VanAnn Moore
Wednesday, 20 February 2013

(supported by the New Mexico Humanities Council)
"Karl May and Beyond: Indian Hobbyists in 20th Century Germany"
Birgit Hans
Friday, 15 February 2013

"The Life of William Becknell, Founder of the Santa Fe Trail: A First-Person Presentation"
Allan Wheeler
Wednesday, 16 January 2013

"Nuevomexicanos and the Rhetoric of Statehood"
Elmo Baca
12 December 2012

"New Mexico Women: The Road to Statehood"
Sandra Schackel
14 November 2012

"The Volunteers of the Spanish American War: New Mexico and its Rough Riders"
Paul Hutton
17 October 2012

"Four Forgotten Ones in the Struggle for Statehood: Aldrich, Luna, Hitchcock, and the Woman's Christian Temperance Union"
David Holtby
26 September 2012

"The Struggle for Statehood: The Search for Law and Order Along New Mexico's Lawless Frontier"
Robert Torrez
17 August 2012

"The Impact of Railroads on New Mexico's Transition from Territory to Statehood, 1880-1914"
Fred Friedman
18 July 2012
Our apologies for the technical difficulties at the beginning of the video recording

"1912: State Fairs and Statehood for New Mexico"
Brian Turo
13 June 2012

"New Mexico: Early Attempts to Gain Statehood"
Robert Larson
04 May 2012

"Understanding William Howard Taft: The President Who Approved New Mexico's Statehood"
Noel Pugach
18 April 2012

"New Mexico: The Stumble to Statehood"
Jon Hunner
12 March 2012

"The Graphics of Statehood: The Mapping of New Mexico"
Dennis Reinhartz
15 February 2012

"Political Cartoons: New Mexico's Struggle for Statehood, 1850-1912"
Richard Melzer
11 January 2012

"Preservation in the Early 20th Century: Edgar L. Hewett and the Monumental Ruins of the Southwest"
Adam Fulton Johnson
21 December 2011.

Performance in conjunction with the exhibits Illuminating the Word: The Saint John’s Bible and Contemplative Landscape. Schola Cantorum, Santa Fe’s Gregorian Chant ensemble and the monks from Christ in the Desert Monastery
04 December 2011.

"Contemplative Landscape" exhibit lecture
Tony O'Brien and Christopher Merrill
23 October 2011.

"Mapping the New World for the Spanish Kings"
Barbara Mundy
18 October 2011.

"A Headdress of Pearls: Luxury Goods on the Camino Real"
Dedie Snow
21 September 2011.

The Santa Fe Symphony and Chorus: A Valuable Local Resource"
Steven Smith
17 August 2011.

Exploring Desert Stone: A Visual Portrayal of the 1859 Macomb Expedition..."
Steven K. Madsen
13 July 2011.

A Great Aridness: Climate Change and the Southwest
William deBuys
16 June 2011.

Frontier Journalism: Oldest Paper in the Newsiest Place
Rob Dean, Santa Fe
18 May 2011.

Walter Noble Burns and the Myth of Billy the Kid
Mark Dworkin, Toronto Canada
07 April 2011.

The Eyes of Texas Are Upon Us: The New Mexico Folk Play Los Tejanos and the History of Texan Invasions
Spencer Herrera, Las Cruces
23 March 2011.

Land, Legitimacy, and the Rise of Reies Lopez Tijerina
Jacobo Baca, Albuquerque
22 February 2011.

Click on the icon or the title and listen to the recording. If you would like to download the recording, please right click and select "Save Target As" (or "Save Link As").

Willard Clark: Printer and Printmaker
David Farmer, Taos
16 June 2010

How The Wolves of Union County Transformed Ernest Thompson Seton (and America)
David Witt, Taos
20 May 2010.

Zebulon Montgomery Pike: Anglo Interloper, American Hero
Brian Murphy, Historian, Santa Fe
14 April 2010.

[Telling New Mexico Lecture] Exile from Paradise, Internment in New Mexico: My Grandfather's Journey
Gail Okawa, Professor of English, Youngstown State University, OH
28 March 2010.

The History of New Mexico's Territorial Penitentiary
Charlie Zdavesky, Historian, Albuquerque
17 March 2010.

On the Trail of the Kid and Pat Garrett
Mark Gardner, Historian and Author, Colorado Springs, CO
26 February 2010.

Alexander von Humboldt and Zebulon Pike and the Mapping of Northern New Spain
Dennis Reinhartz, Professor Emeritus - History, University of Texas at Arlington
17 November 2009.

Colliding Cultures: Athapaskans, Utes, and Europeans enter the Pueblo World
Jason Shapiro, Anthropologist, Santa Fe, N.M.
14 October 2009.

Kingsborough, Catherwood, and Maudslay: Rare Illustraed Works on Ancient Mesoamerica in the Chavez History Library
Khristaan Villela, NMHM Resident Scholar, Santa Fe, N.M.
16 September 2009.

New Mexico Volunteers and Militia During the Civil War
Jerry Thompson, Regents Professor, Texas A and M International University, Laredo
05 August 2009.
We apologize for the background noise in the podcast.

Cherokee Phoenix: Advent of a Newspaper
Frank Brannon, SpeakEasy Press, Asheville, N.C.
20 July 2009.
We apologize for the background noise in the podcast.

The Sister Danger: How the Dixon, New Mexico, Case Shaped American Conversations About church-State Separation
Katie Holscher, Assistant Professor, Department of Theology and Religious Studies, Villanova University, Philadelphia, PA
09 June 2009.

Pueblo Indian Water Rights in New Mexico in the Spanish and Mexican Periods
Stan Hordes, Historian, Albuquerque
13 May 2009.

Fred Harvey Houses of the Southwest
Richard Melzer, Professor of History, University of New Mexico, Valencia
21 April 2009.

The Native American Curio Trade: Archival Sources, Ephemera, and Oral History
Jonathan Batkin, Director Wheelright Museum, Santa Fe
18 March 2009.

The Law and Billy the Kid
Johnny Boggs, Writer, Santa Fe
11 February 2009

Billy the Kid and the Lincoln County War as Literature
Gale Coope, Writer, Sandia Park
22 January 2009
We experienced audio difficulties; here is the copyrighted transcript.

The Railroad's Impact on Land and Water Use in the Middle Rio Grande Valley, 1880-1930
Tessa Davidson, Davidson Law Firm, Corrales
15 October 2008

How to Misread a Western Poem [Bret Harte, Chinese immigration]
Gary Scharnhorst, Professor of English, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque
15 September 2008

New Light on Mesa Verde Archaeology
David Noble, Historian, Santa Fe
6 August 2008

Nathan Augustus Monroe Dudley, 1825-1910: Rogue, Hero or Both? [Lincoln County War]
E. Donald Kaye, Historian, Santa Fe
28 July 2008.

For additional information, please contact Tomas Jaehn at or call (505) 476.5090.