Happy Independence Day

To our family from yours

From Raton NM this year

Happy 4th of July


An unplanned location this year but has a lot of history

and even learned we were saying name of the town wrong

Raton is short for “ratoncito” which is Spanish for little mouse

During the early days of the Santa Fe Trail there was no town known as Raton. When travelers came over the Pass from Colorado to New Mexico they came to the Willow Springs Ranch which operated the local post office. It was customary back then for a community to take on the name of the place where the post office was located. But as the story goes, the Willow Springs Ranch was resented by most because of its monopoly on goods and services in the area; particularly the exorbitant fee it charged those who had just come over the pass for water, basically the Santa Fe Trail’s version of “highway robbery.”

So, when the railroad petitioned the State of New Mexico for a charter to layout a community where the Willow Springs Ranch had been located, the name they proposed for the community was Raton.  Raton is short for “ratoncito” which is Spanish for little mouse (not to be confused with “rata” which is the Spanish word for rat.) Supposedly back in the day there were a lot of chipmunks in the area and the locals referred to them as “ratoncitos”.  And so Raton was born.

Once there was even a movement to try to change the name of Raton to Willow Springs, but it failed miserably. Allegedly another reason Willow Springs was not chosen as the name for Raton was that there was already another town called Willow Springs in Colorado; however, there is no such town in Colorado today.

How do you say Raton?

Raton is pronounced with a long “o” as in “rat-tone”.  You will garner instant respect from the locals if you pronounce the name of our town correctly.
info courtesy of: http://www.visitraton.org/tidbits.html website


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