Picture this…. Circa 1870’s, you are the Trail Boss, in charge of a large cattle drive moving across the country. Your “Vaquero” fires gunshots in the air signaling you into action after spotting a rustler, a man preparing to steal cattle and alter the brand. He’s been caught and prepares for battle.

Imagine you’re the niece of John Chisum and new to Artesia. You quickly become one of the first realtors, running the first post office and a boarding house for railroad immigrants and travelers. You’re business savvy, you care for the sick and are an amazing companion to children even after yours were taken away. Your accomplishments lead the town to be named after you briefly and you later become the First Lady of Artesia.

Sallie Chisum.

Put yourself in the shoes of an early 1920’s businessman and wildcatter looking for oil. You drill once. It’s a dry hole. You drill a second time. It’s “the Big Gassy,” loaded with natural gas. Frustrated, your geologist won’t pick the next site, so you ask your wife. You take her to the field and she strikes the big play, the Illinois #3.

These stories and more are cast in bronze in Artesia, NM.


Visit ArtesiaChamber.com for more information.