Booster Literature

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During New Mexico’s territorial period, land speculators and other people hoping to create new, prosperous towns published broadsides, pamphlets, and newspaper articles to attract outsiders to relocate to their new settlements. At times, family members sent letters to their relatives in other parts of the country or world to promote New Mexico and the West. Because the intention of such literature was to draw people to the territory, the tracts often mischaracterized the area. Booster literature from Columbus, New Mexico, on the U.S.-Mexico border, for example, claimed that underground aquifers provided the town’s agriculturists with an “inexhaustible water supply.” Water was not as plentiful as people were made to believe.