The state's landscape is diverse and includes deserts, mountains, and forests. It is home to several national parks and monuments, including Carlsbad Caverns National Park and the White Sands National Monument.
Chaves County, located in the southeastern region of New Mexico, has a diverse and rich history that spans thousands of years. The area was originally inhabited by various Native American tribes, including the Jornada Mogollon and Apache peoples. These indigenous groups relied on hunting, gathering, and farming as their primary means of survival.

In the 16th century, Spanish explorers arrived in the region, searching for gold and new trading routes. They established settlements and introduced Christianity to the native population. The Spanish influence remained in the area for several centuries, shaping the culture and architecture of Chaves County.

In the 19th century, American pioneers and settlers began to migrate to the region, attracted by the prospects of ranching and agriculture. The arrival of the railroad in the 1880s further stimulated the county's growth, connecting it to national markets and facilitating the transportation of goods.

Chaves County also played a significant role in the development of the aviation industry. In the early 20th century, famed aviator Roscoe Turner established the Roscoe Turner Airport in the county, attracting aviation enthusiasts and pioneering the field of aviation in New Mexico. Today, Chaves County remains an important hub for aviation, with commercial and private airports serving the region.

With its vibrant history, Chaves County continues to thrive as a center for agriculture, aviation, and cultural heritage. The county's diverse past has left a lasting impact on its communities and has shaped it into a unique and vibrant place to live and visit.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Chaves County, New Mexico.

  • 1889: Chaves County is created as a county in the Territory of New Mexico.
  • 1893: Roswell becomes the county seat of Chaves County.
  • Early 1900s: Agriculture, particularly dryland farming and livestock raising, becomes the main economic activities in the county.
  • 1940: Walker Air Force Base is established near Roswell, bringing military personnel and economic growth to the region.
  • 1947: The alleged Roswell UFO incident occurs, gaining worldwide attention and cementing Roswell's place in popular culture.
  • 1950s-1960s: Oil and gas exploration and production become important industries in Chaves County.
  • 1970s: The construction and completion of the Brantley Dam leads to the development of recreational activities, such as boating and fishing, in the county.
  • 1990s-Present: Chaves County continues to experience population growth and economic diversification, with sectors like healthcare, education, and tourism playing significant roles.