Maxwell Statue in Cimarron
, New Mexico
. Lucien B. Maxwell
was the owner of the Maxwell Land Grant
, the largest land grant ever made in in the United States. Creating more than its share of complaints and controversy over the years, it ultimately led to the Colfax County War
. The almost two million acre land grant included the entire western portion of Colfax County and the southern part of Las Animas County, Colorado
. Two times larger than the State of Rhode Island, the area included the towns of Cimarron
, Springer, Raton and Elizabethtown
in New Mexico
, as well as Segundo and other towns in Colorado
. The area is surrounded by breathtaking mountain views, beckoning valleys, streams teeming with fish and hillsides alive with game.
Maxwell grew wealthy from the rich mineral resources on the grant, but after enjoying many years of prosperity he made a number of poor investments and in 1870 sold the grant. Five years later he died at Fort Sumner, New Mexico
Interestingly, the curator of the Aztec Museum says that the statue wasn't originally built for Maxwell, but rather for a man named Henry Springer. But Mr. Springer didn't like it and said "Statues are for dead people." So, the artist dedicated it to Maxwell instead.
Photo by Kathy Weiser-Alexander