Today, June 5th, is the 50th anniversary of the Tierra Amarilla Courthouse Raid. This date remains forever linked with the land grant movement in northern New Mexico and with the charismatic activist, revolutionary, and evangelist for the restoration of land rights to Chicano peoples of Northern New Mexico: Reies Lopez Tijerina.
Tijerina founded the Alianza Federal de Mercedes in New Mexico in 1963 — and held meetings in many Rio Arriba county villages with men and women invigorated by resistance. The Federal Alliance of Land Grants had as its mission to reverse the theft of Hispano lands by Anglos who had violated the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo.
Yesterday saw an event at the Center for Contemporary Arts Cinematheque, part of the Radical Southwest program of the Voices of Counterculture exhibition. It brought together many people who today are involved in scholarship analyzing what the T.A. raid means half a century later.