New Mexico


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New Mexico (NM) is a state in the Southwestern Region of the United States of America. With a population of approximately two million, New Mexico is the 36th most populous state. With a total area of 121,590 sq mi (314,900 km2), it is the fifth largest and fifth least densely populated of the fifty states. It is one of the Mountain States and shares the Four Corners region with Utah, Colorado, and Arizona. Its capital and cultural center is Santa Fe, while its largest city is Albuquerque. Due to its geographic location, Northern and Eastern New Mexico exhibits a colder, alpine climate while Western and Southern New Mexico exhibits a warmer, arid climate.

The economy of New Mexico is dependent on oil drilling, mineral extraction, dryland farming, cattle ranching, lumber milling, and retail trade. As of 2016-17, its total gross domestic product (GDP) was $95 billion with a GDP per capital of $45,465. A tax haven, New Mexico collects low to moderate personal income taxes on residents and military personnel, and gives tax credits and exemptions to favorable industries. Because of this, its film industry has grown and contributed $1.23 billion to its overall economy. Due to its large area and economic climate, New Mexico has a large U.S. military presence marked notably with the White Sands Missile Range. Various U.S. national security agencies base their research and testing arms in New Mexico such as the Sandia and Los Alamos National Laboratories.

Its history has given New Mexico the highest percentage of Hispanic and Latino Americans, and the second-highest percentage of Native Americans as a population proportion (after Alaska). Three federally-protected Native American tribes–the Navajo, Pueblo, and Apache peoples–inhabit New Mexico; historically the Ancestral Puebloans, Mogollon, and the modern extant Comanche inhabited the state. The largest Hispanic and Latino groups represented include the Hispanos of New Mexico (of Iberian, Mediterranean, or Mestizo descent), Chicanos, and Mexican Americans. The flag of New Mexico emphatically features the state’s Spanish and Native American origins with the same scarlet and gold coloration as Spain's Cross of Burgundy, along with the ancient sun symbol of the Zia, a Pueblo-related tribe.

Inhabited by Native Americans for thousands of years before European exploration, it was colonized by the Spanish in 1598 as part of the Imperial Spanish viceroyalty of New Spain. Contrary to popular belief, the present-day state of New Mexico is not part of, nor is it even named for, the present-day nation of Mexico. In fact, New Mexico was so named as early as 1561, whereas the country of Mexico did not receive that name until 1821. It was named Nuevo México after the Aztec Valley of Mexico by Spanish settlers, 223 years before the establishment of the present-day country of Mexico. Being on the periphery of two empires—Spanish and Comancheria—made settlement and effective political control difficult, even when it became part of Mexico after 1821. New Mexico's longstanding economic ties to the Comanche made integration with Mexico difficult, which helped spark the Revolt of 1837 and a growing economic association with the expanding United States. The 1848 Mexican–American War indirectly capitalized on this tension and created the U.S. New Mexico Territory. It was admitted to the Union as the 47th state on January 6, 1912. During the 1940s, Project Y of the Manhattan Project developed and built the world's first atomic bomb and nuclear test, Trinity, in northern and central New Mexico, respectively.

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