Louis Serna | Author
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Recent Book Release

All the times I could have died!

Early History of Springer

Aerial View of Springer, NM
Looking North in 1932 – ‘34

Centered in the picture is old highway 85 that passed through the center of town, then made a wide turn west, and then continued northward to French tract, Maxwell and Raton.

Frank
Springer

Frank Springer was a very successful lawyer from Iowa, who came to Cimarron in 1873, at the time of the sale of the huge Maxwell Land Grant. He became the legal counsel for the Grant through the maze and years of litigation and in the end, in exchange for his legal fees, received a large tract of land that became the CS Ranch… (CS for his brother, Charles Springer). Part of the land that Frank received became the town of “Springer” which was named for him.

Melvin W. Mills
Mansion

One of the most prominent lawyers in northern NM in the late 1800’s, was M.W. Mills who came to Elizabethtown NM in the 1880’s when it was at its height in gold mining. From there he went to Cimarron during its turbulent years following the sale of the Maxwell Land Grant. He became very wealthy and built the mansion for himself at Springer. After the devastating flood or 1904 that swept through Springer and beyond, his fortunes changed and he fell into ruin… as did his mansion. It still stands today in Springer.

Filadelfio
Nolan

Filadelfio Nolan was the son of Jose Nolan and Maclovia Lopez. Jose was the son of Fernando Nolan and Juilianita Abeyta. Fernando was the son of Gervasio Nolan and Dolores La Landa. Gervasio Nolan was the recipient of the large Gervais Nolan Land Grant of northern New Mexico. Gervais was a French Canadian who came into the area of New Mexico in the mid 1800’s. He became the progenitor of the Nolan families of New Mexico and beyond. His story, in the book, is that of yet another successful early entrepreneur..! Note that the spelling of many of the Nolan men has been “Hispanicized” over the years.

Margarito “Mike”
Nolan

Mike was born on March 5, 1914 in Ocate, NM, to Filadelfio Nolan and Emilia Cruz. He was a very friendly and outgoing gentleman who was very popular among his friends and acquaintances in and around Springer. He was a descendant of Gervais “Gervasio” Nolan.

Ruben S.
Vigil

Ruben was born in Chacon, NM on August 21, 1883 and died in 1946. His father was a successful rancher / farmer who provided well for his family and Ruben followed in his footsteps. As a young man, his mother told him that if he wanted to make something of himself he should go to the “towns”… he chose Springer and soon after he was married to Luisita Lopez of that same place, he went to Springer where he worked hard and exceeded at every opportunity that came his way. Ruben and Luisita were the parents of a large family who have descendants far and wide.

Ruben and Luisita Lopez – Vigil

A fine example of the prominent people of Springer, NM. Ruben was a successful entrepreneur who prospered at his ventures and was one of Springer’s “pillars” of the community.

The Floersheim Store

Unfortunately, I was not able to find a picture of Samuel “Sol” Floersheim, perhaps one of the most prominent merchants in northern New Mexico. Pictured one of his stores in Springer that served the community for many years. His many businesses throughout the region spoke to his outstanding business acumen and his ability to get along with his customers. He raised an outstanding family of businessmen whose reputations were as outstanding as His. The book contains a lengthy section of this outstanding family.

Louis F. Serna – Before an After..!

Louis was born and raised in Springer, within a tight – knit family of his Vigil and Serna parents. This book contains a section in which Louis describes what life was like for him “when he was a kid”… growing up in Springer… perhaps a childhood not unlike that of kids anywhere, when they grow up with an inquisitive mind and proper parenting. He grew up to be a man of many talents; An aerospace machinist, welder, Community College teaching professor, Manager of a national Vocational Training Center in Seattle, WA, Plant Engineer of a major steel foundry in Seattle, producing military components for the NATO forces in Europe, and other avocations. Throughout his life, he has been a genealogist producing a massive database of many families of New Mexico, including his own Serna and Vigil ancestors. As well, he has been an author of some 15 books on historical people, places and events of northern New Mexico, including this book. There is more to this interesting character whose goal now is to leave a history that others can pick up and continue for the good of generations to come.

Other Available Books

ALL THE TIMES I COULD HAVE DIED!

This book is about “close calls” the author has had when his life was truly in danger of ending tragically..! He describes how he came to be in the situation he was in, how it developed into a deadly situation and how he narrowly escaped death..! The events could happen to anybody in a similar situation, so the author advises caution in everything you do..!

Early History of Springer

Early history of Springer, New Mexico from its origins in the mid 1800’s through the 1950’s. The author was born there in 1941 and grew up there until his age 14 when his family moved to Cimarron, New Mexico, 20 miles away. The book contains pictures of significant events, business buildings, people and tragedies that occurred there. It also includes the names of people and some history of families of interest who lived in Springer in its earliest day. It also includes the author’s experiences as a kid growing up in the 1940’s – 50’s and the area history as he remembers it. The book is an historical album of Springer.

A History of the Spanish People of Northern New Mexico

In northern New Mexico, as opposed to other regions of the country the people are unique in that the Spanish families of today are the direct descendants of the first Spanish explorers and colonists who came into the area in the 1600’s.

Tessie Maxwell of the Maxwell Land Grant Family

In 1979, I produced a short story of the life of Tessie Maxwell of Cimarron, New Mexico. Although not an author or writer by occupation, I tried to present an image of Tessie, through information she gave me, information gathered over several years by mail, interviews, recorded documents, and from first-hand knowledge I had of Tessie, being her son-in-law.

The Sernas of the World, a Family History

My account of the Serna (De La Serna) history begins in medieval Europe, about the time of the feuding kings and princes of Europe, Spain, El Cid, Constantinople, Suleyman, Columbus, and the time of occupation of Spain by the Moors.

The Life of Liven Serna, Famous Bearhunter of the Rayado

Following are the memoirs of Liven Serna, a highly respected hunter and craftsman who grew up in the area around Rayado, and Springer New Mexico.

The Alfred Dorrance Story

Alfred Alejandro Dorrance was born in Cimarron, New Mexico on June 12, 1919, to Ricardo and Fedelia Dorrance. He grew up in this small village in northern New Mexico, among his brothers and sisters and childhood friends.

The Mossmans of Baldy Mountain

The town of “Baldy” was a settlement in Colfax County, New Mexico, 4 miles northeast of Elizabethtown, high on Baldy Mountain, and about 30 miles west of Cimarron, along the beautiful Cimarron Canyon. In the 1860’s a Ute Indian showed a piece of rich copper float to a Capt. William Moore, owner of a sutler’s store at Fort Union, New Mexico.

New Mexicans – Who Really Are We?

Many years ago, about 1966, I started doing a study of my wife’s and my own family histories. At that time, “genealogy” was not the popular pastime that it has become and there were certainly no short-cuts or handy computers in which to compile information. it was all pencil, notepad, and file jackets… and lots of frustration and headaches..!

Clay Allison and the Colfax County War

The book begins in the 1840’s in Tennessee and is the story of Clay Allison who became a prominent character / gunfighter in northern New Mexico. The book chronicles many events and battles between the North and South during the Civil War around the Allison homestead in Tennessee.