Hobbs and Lea County

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When Lea County was created in 1917 from Eddy and Chaves Counties in the far southeastern corner of New Mexico, it was virtually a blank canvas for new settlers, with few roads, towns, or amenities. At that time, the area was little more than vast pasture lands for cattle, though a handful of hardy folk had already established homesteads in the region. But on June 13, 1928, that all changed when oil was discovered, and almost overnight, an influx of new settlers arrived, and development began in earnest. Oil wells were drilled on ranchers' property, and saloons, stores, and hotels sprang up, especially in the city of Hobbs. The oil boom drove the early economy of Hobbs and Lea County and of southeastern New Mexico, but through boom and bust, the community has endured, and today more than 50,000 residents call it home.
ISBN: 9780738558561
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Arcadia Publishing
State: New Mexico
Series: Images of America
Images: 200
Pages: 128
Dimensions: 6.5 (w) x 9.25 (h)
A resident of Hobbs since 1937, author and Lea County historian Max A. Clampitt was employed by the Hobbs Post Office for 28 years and, in 1972, was elected to the Hobbs City Commission, serving for 20 years as a city commissioner and mayor. Currently he writes for the Hobbs News-Sun. In this book, Clampitt showcases nearly 200 photographs—some dating back as far as the 1890s—from his extensive personal collection, which documents the colorful history of Hobbs and of Lea County.
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