Few places offer such a diverse taste of history as you will find in Taos. Whether you seek to explore Native American historical architectural and culture, art history, pop culture or the Wild West, Taos provides many opportunities. Below is just a short list of historical sites located nearby. One could easily visit these in a single day with a well planned itinerary.
Travel back to between 1000 and 1450 CE with a visit to the Taos Pueblo. Taos Pueblo is the only living Native American community designated both a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and a National Historic Landmark. The adobe walls of the multi-storied residential complex are among the one of the oldest continuously inhabited communities in the United States. They offer a glimpse into life as it was and as it remains today. Contact the Taos Pueblo Tourism Department at 575-758-1028 for more information.
Ledoux is charming side street, only steps from the Taos plaza, lined with 200-year-old adobe homes. With its narrow winding walls, turquoise blue painted doors and quaint gallery spaces the street itself is as aesthetically pleasing as the paintings hidden within its walls.
A short way down Ledoux Street you will find the home of Ernest Blumenschein, a founding member of the Taos Society of Artists. Blumenschein was known for his paintings of Native Americans and the American Southwest. The home is filled with a superb collection of the Blumenschein family’s art and a several works by other famous Taos artists.
Ledoux street also boasts several art galleries and the well respected Harwood Museum of Art. The Harwood has a diverse collection including works by Agnes Martin and the Taos Moderns alongside hand-carved retablos ( in the Hispanic Traditions Exhibition) and important paintings by early twentieth century landscape and indigenous cultures artists.
At the far end of Ledoux – across Ranchitos Road is the Larry Bell Gallery. Larry, a member of the Taos Moderns, has a profound understanding of light and space which he has developed over the past 40 years of working in the studio. Perhaps best known for his use of vacuum deposition of thin films on reflective glass cubes, this gallery is a fusion of art and science. Find out more about Larry’s work on YouTube.
The Wild West
For wild west aficionados the Brent Street museum and Kit Carson’s home offer a glimpse into the chaos of the time.
Governor Bent was killed during the Taos Revolt on January 19, 1847. A hole in the parlor wall shows where family members escaped as their home was being invaded. To better understand the times a short read called the Taos Massacre is recommended.
Kit Carson’s home is another stop on the wild-west tour. Located on Kit Carson Road (really) the house offers an opportunity to learn a little more about who the man was and how he lived. A worthwhile stop located within easy walking distance of the Bent Street Museum or the Taos Plaza.
Hollywood Glamour in Taos
The heiress to a Standard oil fortune and one time lover of Clark Gable, Millicent Rogers came to Taos in 1947. During the remaining years of her life she acquired a vast array of Southwestern art, jewelry and furniture. Her home was converted into a museum and can be found on Millicent Rogers Road, just a short distance north of town. Directions can be found here.
These few stops are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the history of the region but they are a good start to giving you a feeling of the town’s flavor. Contact the concierge at Taos Property Rentals for more information.