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Columns

  • Nuestra Historia - Old Town remained firmly rooted

    While East Las Vegas moved forward as New Mexico’s newest and most vibrant American city in the 1880’s, the west side did not immediately take a back seat. The Romero brothers and many of the early non-Hispanic merchants continued their business establishments in what became La Plaza Vieja (Old Town).

  • Another Perspective - What’s 50 percent of 20?

    “OK, so what’s 50 percent of 20?” My students looked around at one another, wrestling with what was intended as a gift riddle, clueless.

  • Work of Art - ‘You were never my age’

    “Why, when I was your age . . . “ It’s impossible to utter those six words, in that sequence, without having someone come up with, “Yes, we already know: You had to walk to school five miles, uphill both ways, in deep snow.”

    So I won’t be mentioning the daily trudges through snow, in freezing weather that lasted from December to December. Nor will I write about the distance of our treks.

  • Editor's Note - No better man

    Real men. I’ve known a few. Old-school men who faced down fears and conquered their world. Strong men who took on great challenges.

    Fighters, lovers, warriors, leaders, competitors, champions — even losers who never quit even when they knew they’d been beaten. These were men who stood their ground.

    But none of them had more of an impact on my life than my father. To me, he was always a giant among men.

  • Nuestra Historia - New Town glittered with Tamme Opera House

    Emerging as a separate and independent municipality following the failed attempt at unification with the west side in 1882-84, East Las Vegas quickly took root as a dynamic American city. Major water works, and gas and electric projects soon got under way in New Town, and Protestant churches were erected at Zion Hill and on Douglas Avenue. (See “Zion Hill and the Early Protestant Churches,” Nuestra Historia, Jan. 6, 2012.)

  • Editor's Note - Working off script

    It’s no wonder the television networks opted to cut back their coverage of the party conventions. These days they’re so scripted that one might mistake them for infomercials.

    Still, there are those occasional unscripted moments, like the Clint Eastwood episode at the Republican National Convention. Bizarre is a good word to describe it, and sadly entertaining. I doubt it did the Romney-Ryan ticket much good.

  • Nuestra Historia - Failed unity: 1882-1884

    Soon after the east side began its lightning-fast growth in 1879, many west side businesses moved across the river to the new rail town, finding it easier and more profitable to be near the railroad docks and sprawling commercial houses on Railroad Avenue. Thus began a gradual decline of the west side, which will be reviewed at length later.

  • Work of Art - Fleeing a flea market

    “Did you catch that typo?” I asked my oldest son, Stan Adam, as we drove past a place of active outdoor sales.

    He said he hadn’t, so I made a U-turn to give him another look. “I don’t see anything unusual —  for Las Vegas,” he said, “unless you’re looking at the way the people misspelled “flea.”

  • Editor's Note - Thoughts on working

    Editor’s note: This column first appeared on Labor Day 2011.

    If you are a working stiff, sweating away eight or more hours a day for someone who’s making the “big bucks,” there’s a good chance that you feel unappreciated.
    Or, if you’re a boss, stressing out over all the problems that confront you, you probably know that, from time to time, it really is “lonely at the top.”

  • Nuestra Historia - ‘Going from one country into another’

    East and West Las Vegas evolved as if they were two neighboring countries, divided by a river, with a border crossing on Bridge Street.

    The remarkable separateness of the two towns was vividly observed by Milton Nahm, as he recalled covering the Carl Magee trials as a cub reporter for the Optic in 1923 and 1926.

    Nahm’s description of the pronounced divide is intensely poignant, and his narrative transports you to that time: