- Karl Hinterbichler
City in New Mexico (pop. 541,615; metropolitan area 869,684; 2010 US Census). The Rio Grande Valley has been populated and cultivated since as far back as 2000 bce. The Pueblo people who lived in the area when Europeans arrived had a sophisticated culture and advanced skills in stone masonry, ceramics, and a wide range of arts and crafts. Although the Spanish settled in New Mexico in 1598, a city charter was not granted to this small outpost until 1706, when provincial governor Don Francisco Cuervo y Valdes named it in honor of Don Francisco Fernández de la Cueva, viceroy of New Spain (1653–60). One of de la Cueva’s aristocratic titles was Duke of Alburquerque, referring to the Spanish town of Alburquerque, which led to Albuquerque, New Mexico becoming known as the Duke City. Present-day Albuquerque retains much of its Spanish and Native American cultural heritage, but long ago dropped the additional “r” found in the Spanish name. The spectacular Sandia Mountains run along the eastern side of Albuquerque, and the Rio Grande flows through the city, north to south....