May 28, 2010

Jailhouse door

Valentina Madrid and Alma Lyons no doubt heard the thud of hammers on planks, as men built the gallows outside this jail cell. The two gals were sentenced to hang by Judge Frank W. Parker for the premeditated murder of Valentina's husband, Manuel Madrid. Manuel's demise, and the eventual outcome of the sentencing are well documented in Robert Torrez' book Myth of the Hanging Tree: Stories of Crime and Punishment in Territorial New Mexico.

The Hillsboro Historical Society seeks to purchase and preserve this building and the attending courthouse ruin. Photo courtesy Craig Springer

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