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Records of the United States Territorial and New Mexico District Courts for Rio Arriba County,

Identifier: 1973-017

Scope and Content

Collection consists of the territorial and New Mexico district court records for Rio Arriba County, New Mexico (1848-1954). The bulk of the material covers the years 1848-1912. Included are record books (1848-1921), case files (1849-1954), and miscellaneous court records. Records books consist of various dockets (1860-1921), court proceedings record books (1848-1911), and jury lists (1892-1897, 1904-1921). Dockets include criminal (1883-1901, 1901-1909, 1906-1912), civil (1882-1910), judge's criminal (1887-1891, 1899, 1904-1914), judge's civil (1887-1891, 1899-1911), and judgement (1891-1905, 1918-1921) volumes. Court proceedings record books cover criminal (1848-1911) and civil (1848-1911) hearings. Case files consist of criminal cases 115-1632 (1855-1911) and civil cases 5-1374, 5563, 6230 (1849-1909, 1940s, 1954). Large gaps may exist between case files. Many case files are unnumbered. Many of the cases after 1912 are not part of this collection.

Some materials in Spanish


  • 1848-1954 (bulk 1848-1912)

Language of Materials

English, and Spanish.

Access Restrictions

Outsized records books are extremely fragile. Use microfilm only.

Copy Restrictions

Limited duplication allowed for research purposes. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Historical Note

With the occupation of New Mexico in 1846 by the United States, seven political sub-divisions established by Mexico in 1844 were recognized as counties under the Kearny Code of Laws. Rio Arriba was one of these original seven counties. New Mexico remained under a military form of government until Sept. 9, 1850, when an Act of Congress established the Territory of New Mexico. On January 9, 1952, the boundaries of the counties were fixed by an Act of the Territorial Legislative Assembly. Rio Arriba County, New Mexico was placed in the 2nd Judicial District of the United States Territorial Courts in New Mexico in 1846. In 1863 Rio Arriba County was transferred from the 2nd to the 1st Judicial District. Upon statehood in 1912, the Territorial Courts became the New Mexico District Courts.


14.5 linear feet + 27 v. + 3 rolls


Collection is organized into six series:
  1. I. Docket Books
  2. II. Record Books (Journals)
  3. III. Jury Lists
  4. IV. Miscellaneous Records
  5. V. Criminal Case Files
  6. VI. Civil Case Files

Alternate Format

Microfilm available.

Related Materials

Naturalization records are located in the "Naturalization Records by New Mexico Courts" Accession Number 1959-281 Additional court material is located in the "Records of the United States Territorial and New Mexico District Court Clerks" Accession Number 1974-033 Most statehood material remains with the Judicial District Court Clerk.


Contact Information

  1. New Mexico State Records Center and Archives
  2. Archives and Historical Services Division
  3. 1205 Camino Carlos Rey
  4. Santa Fe, New Mexico 87505
  5. Phone: 505-476-7908
  6. Fax: 505-476-7909
  7. Email:
  8. URL:
Inventory of the Records of the United States Territorial and New Mexico District Courts for Rio Arriba County, 1848-1954 (bulk 1848-1912)
Edited Full Draft
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid is in English

Revision Statements

  • June 28, 2004: PUBLIC "-//New Mexico State Records Center and Archives//TEXT (US::Nm-Ar::1973-017::Records of the United States Territorial and New Mexico District Courts for Rio Arriba County)//EN" "nmar1973-017.sgml" converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02.xsl (sy2003-10-15).
  • Monday, 20210524: Attribute normal is missing or blank.

Repository Details

Part of the New Mexico State Records Center and Archives Repository

1209 Camino Carlos Rey
Santa Fe NM 87507
(505) 476-7948