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.
Roosevelt County, located in eastern New Mexico, has a rich and diverse history that spans several centuries. The area was initially inhabited by various Native American tribes, including the Apache and Comanche, who relied on the region's abundant wildlife and natural resources for their survival. In the 1800s, Euro-American settlers began to establish ranches and farms in the area, attracted by the fertile soil and favorable climate.

In 1881, the town of Portales was founded as a stop along the Belen Cut-Off of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway. The railroad brought new opportunities for trade and commerce, resulting in the rapid growth and development of the town. The county itself was officially established in 1903, named after President Theodore Roosevelt, a champion of western development.

Agriculture has played a crucial role in the county's history and economy, with cotton, peanuts, and feed crops being the mainstay of local farmers. The introduction of irrigation systems in the early 20th century further bolstered agricultural production, allowing for increased crop yields and diversification.

Roosevelt County also has a strong military presence. During World War II, the area was home to several military bases, including the Clovis Army Airfield (now Cannon Air Force Base). The military base brought an influx of personnel, stimulating the local economy and contributing to the county's growth. Today, Cannon Air Force Base continues to be a major employer in the region and an important part of Roosevelt County's history and identity.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Roosevelt County, New Mexico.

  • 1800s: The area known as Roosevelt County was originally inhabited by various Native American tribes, including the Comanches and Apaches.
  • 1870s: Settlers began to establish homesteads in the region, attracted by the availability of fertile land and water sources.
  • 1903: Roosevelt County was officially created by the New Mexico Territorial Legislature and named after President Theodore Roosevelt.
  • 1907: Portales was established as the county seat of Roosevelt County.
  • 1928: Eastern New Mexico University (ENMU) was founded in Portales, becoming a major educational institution in the county.
  • 1942: Cannon Air Force Base was established near Clovis, contributing to the local economy and leading to population growth.
  • 1957: The Roosevelt County Farmer's Electric Cooperative was formed, providing electricity to rural areas of the county.
  • 1960s: Agriculture, particularly cattle ranching and dryland farming, remained the primary economic activities in the county.
  • 1980s: The discovery of oil and gas reserves in Roosevelt County led to increased drilling and extraction activities.
  • 2000s: The county saw continued growth and development, with a focus on expanding educational opportunities and attracting new industries.