Lone Piñon band members sitting at the end of the stage posing for a photo.

In March 2023, the community of Peñasco hosted a unique celebration of local culture and heritage, thanks to the support of the American Rescue Plan grant funds. The special event, which included both a dance workshop and a community concert, was organized by the New Mexico Humanities Council…


Following the Manito Trail presented as a cultural heritage exhibition that sharing the migration experiences, creative practices, and largely untold stories of Manito (Hispanic New Mexican) families from Taos County and its surrounding area. These families carried their culture with them through their migrations to other states for seasonal and permanent work during the 19th and 20th centuries. These migrations represent Manito family values in surviving, even if it meant leaving the homes they cherished. Their contributions significantly impacted the American West through their labor in sheepherding, coal mining, railroad construction, and the sugar beet fields. Wherever they went, they never forgot their roots in New Mexico, and they shaped their new homes in other states to preserve and adapt their cultural traditions that they brought with them. For some families, the following generations stayed in their diaspora homes, and, for others, they returned to New Mexico. Through their descendents, Manito families carry on the legacy of shaping the northern New Mexico cultural landscape through professions in medicine, the humanities, the arts, linguistics, and agriculture. Through sounds and sights, this exhibition highlights Manito family histories; the significance of storytelling, farming, agricultural, poetic, religious, and culinary practices to Manito families; and the Hispanic art forms of santos and colchas. The exhibition’s Humanities Discussion Panel series offers audiences several opportunities to join the conversation through direct dialogue with the Following the Manito Trail scholars and the project’s cultural community network. This exhibition will travel to two more locations in northern New Mexico, one in Santa Fe County and one in Rio Arriba County.