DescriptionIn 1866 Uncle Dick Wootton, an enterprising local, completed 27 miles of road over Raton Pass, set up a tollgate at his ranch near the summit and charged $1.50 per wagon to use his Santa Fe Trail improvement. As the trail was the main route to the Southwest, Wootton fared well; his bank deposits were allegedly whiskey kegs full of silver dollars.
By 1880 the stopover 7 miles south of the summit of Raton (ra-TONE) Pass had evolved into a full-fledged community. Surviving Victorian-style buildings along First Street are a reminder of Raton's late 19th-century mining and railroad heyday; one example is the 1890s-era Palace Hotel is at First and Cook streets.
Sugarite Canyon State Park, 10 miles northeast via SR 72, offers lakes and picnic sites.
Visitor InfoRaton Chamber of Commerce 100 Clayton Rd. RATON, NM 87740. Phone:(575)445-3689
Self-guiding toursBrochures detailing tours of the city's historic district are available from the chamber and economic development council.
Things to SeeNRA Whittington Center