Albuquerque in Our Time: 30 Voices, 300 Years

Albuquerque, New Mexico, a city astride a great river, celebrates its tricentennial with thirty of its most colorful citizens sharing in their own words memories of a place and time after the Second World War when a modern city’s character and landscape were being shaped.

Al Hurricane, Sen. Pete Domenici, Ruben Cobos, Tony Hillerman, Robert Stamm, Jacqueline Baca: the city’s artists and business people, writers and journalists, politicians and urban planners, architects and developers, scientists and scholars, leaders of the postwar generation who helped to guide the city’s growth and to balance its stubborn anti-urban nature wit the high-tech sprawl that defines America’s centers.

Stop in for a meal at Duran’s Pharmacy. Wander down Central to the corner of First, the city’s historic center.  Visit the creaky memories of Old Town and smell the coffee in Las Barelas.  Stroll the winding city street of Martinez Town or thrill to a ride in a hot-air balloon at the State Fair.  Nob Hill in the southeast heights, circa 1940, imagined itself out of the desert scrub.  By 1950 housing subdivisions began their crawl toward the Sandias, and downtown saw its heyday along with the inevitability of its decline. Preservation and conservation found their way onto the city stage, and today a revitalization movement has breathed new life into old town and downtown.