Another #InsideTheArchives post originally from our Facebook page, @LosAlamosHistory. Henry S. Buckman owned a sawmill named the Buckman Set located in the Jemez Mountains. His logging business, from 1898–1902, required him to develop roads leading from the Rio Grande to his site. In that short time, according to Historic Transportation Routes on the Pajarito Plateau by Dorothy Hoard, "Buckman built (or reconstructed) and maintained a bridge over the Rio Grande. He built (or rebuilt) a road up the 700-foot wall of White Rock Canyon and 11 miles over the mesas. He built his sawmill at the base of the mountains near Water Canyon (now S-Site) and employed a large crew." (pgs. 16–17, LA-UR-06-3550)
Buckman's bridge and roads gave newfound access to the Pajarito Plateau. "By 1900, the maps show his road from the river to the mountains, with offshoots north across Pajarito and Los Alamos canyons to the Los Alamos homesteads." (Historic Roads of Los Alamos by Dorothy Hoard) These roads were used by homesteaders and Los Alamos Ranch School staff and students.
#InsideTheArchives we have an array of historic photographs of the Buckman Bridge and the town of Buckman, New Mexico. Within our artifact collection, we even have a book with a stamp from the town of Buckman alongside the Ranch School stamp. Today, you can see from the overlook at White Rock Canyon where the town used to be and where the bridge crossed the Rio Grande.
Read a little more about historic Los Alamos roads and transportation in Historic Roads of Los Alamos and Homesteading on the Pajarito Plateau, both available in our online museum shop: www.losalamoshistory.org/store/c2/books
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These articles are written by the Los Alamos Historical Society Staff. Many of these articles were originally published by the