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Gurley Motor Company
New Mexico's Oldest Ford Dealership - Since 1933
701 W. Coal Ave. Gallup, NM 87301
Phone: (866) 211-5730
Grants, New Mexico can trace its roots back to the Ancient Puebloans that first established civilization in the 12th century. While the area lay more or less abandoned for hundreds of years, the region quickly picked up as technology advanced. Like many parts of the United States, Grants has the railroad to think for its prosperity.
The first “modern” resident of Grants was Don Jesus Blea, a contractor for a railroad company. He established his home near San Jose Creek in 1872, calling it Alamitos, or “Little Cottonwoods.”
The Grant brothers, Angus, Lewis, and John, soon contracted the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad to run through the region. They established base camps as they continued westward. Come 1881, the railroad reached Alamitos and a coaling station was established; consider it the fuel stop of the late 1800s. The settlement was named Grant’s Camp as the area underwent development as a result of the railroad.
Simon Bibo, an entrepreneur, took hold of 160 acres of land, building a store and hotel before selling extra land. Soon enough the region was a bustling town along the railroad. Come 1882, a post office was established, called Grants.
The community was bustling, from ranches to logging, and the name changed from Grant’s Camp to Grant’s Station. In 1936, the town’s official name changed to Grants. Come 1950, Paddy Martinez, a local rancher, discovered uranium.
Grants’ uranium deposits were among the largest in the world and increased the area’s population tenfold. Mining continued under the United States Atomic Energy Commission until the early 1980s when a recession forced the mines to close.
As a result of the mines, Grants’ economy had diversified. Today it sits on Bluewater and Ramah Lakes near the Ancient Puebloan Ruins. Boasting a population of around 9,000, it’s a popular vacation sport for those seeking outdoor recreation.