Manuel Armijo was born in 1793 to a prominent Albuquerque family. He served as alcalde (mayor) of Albuquerque on several occasions in the 1820s. During his tenure as alcalde, he led an expedition against Apaches. In 1827 he began his first term as governor of New Mexico. He also maintained a lucrative sheep and textiles trade. The Taos Revolt of 1837 placed him back in the governor’s chair and he gained prominence as a patriot for his role in thwarting the Texan-Santa Fe Expedition in 1841. His failure to defend New Mexico against the Army of the West in 1846 tarnished his reputation, but he successfully appealed to Mexico City politicians to recover much of his notoriety. Still, his actions as governor (granting lands to American newcomers) and his retreat in 1846 have made him a much-maligned figure in New Mexico history.
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