Saturday, July 6, 2013

Gallup, New Mexico: The Sum of Its Parts

Gallup, New Mexico

After my first pass through Gallup, I wrote about it here

On a more recent drive-through, I still felt that special something about Gallup. Not the winters. Don't like them - too damn cold.

Zombies in Gallup, New Mexico?

Gallup is a train town. I like that. Even the town's name has a train connection.

Gallup, New Mexico
I'm not the only tourist attracted to Gallup. Here's an in-depth look at the town by another passerby, cvmiranda, who "found [herself] fascinated trying to figure out the history, demographics, economy, and  everything about this city after an hour visit." 

Gallup, New Mexico
Gallup has a town center - well, three town centers, in fact: One with the government buildings and a library and a public art thing going on, then an historic commercial center with bars and stores. Then there's the Route 66 motel row parallel to the train tracks. There's a residential area with tidy houses in good shape. There's a section where people aren't so flush.


The folks are gosh darn friendly in Gallup, an opinion based on my few interactions with Gallupians I encountered.

Gallup, New Mexico
Gallup has a diverse history, what with Indian trading in artisan work, mining, the railroad, and I don't know what else.

Here is a repository of oral histories from members of the United Indian Traders' Association (UITA), which played a prominent role in Gallup commerce.  

Overall, Gallup comes across as a town that's seen better days, but with pockets of hope showing. To check my perception against reality, I looked at city-data's information for both Gallup and Jefferson City, Missouri, where I come from. Median household income is slightly higher in Gallup than Jefferson City (48k versus 47k, respectively), but there's a large reverse gap in per capita income: 19k in Gallup versus 26k in Jefferson City). (Larger families in Gallup?) When I dig a little deeper, I see that 46.6% of Gallup households have an income of 40k or less, while the same holds true for 43.7% of Jefferson City households.  Bottom line: I haven't dug any deeper to know what to make of Gallup's economic situation.

Gallup, New Mexico

The Gallup Cultural Center is fine, designed with an eye for space and light.

Gallup, New Mexico

If only the winters weren't so cold ... 

A slide show:

Gallup, NM


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