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Lincoln County, New Mexico


Lincoln County administrative offices are located at 300 Central Avenue, Carrizozo, NM 88301; phone: 800-687-2705.

Beginnings [1]

Lincoln County is located in south central New Mexico. Named after Abraham Lincoln, the County was established in 1869. At that time, it made up nearly one fourth of the entire state and was the largest county in the United States. Today it comprises 4,858 square miles which range from sprawling ranch lands to mountain settings. Important natural features in Lincoln County include the Lincoln National Forest, Sacramento Mountains, Capitan Mountains, Bonito Lake, and the Valley of Fires lava fields.

Lincoln County also has a rich history. It lays claim to some of the most well-known figures of the West, including Billy the Kid and Smokey Bear. The County is also dotted with ghost towns and artists' enclaves, as well as the resort town of Ruidoso.

Carrizozo is the Lincoln County seat, although Ruidoso is the largest town in the County. Other incorporated places include Ruidoso Downs, Capitan, and Corona. The County also embraces a number of small communities, including Alto, Alto Crest, Ancho, Arabela, Fort Stanton, Glencoe, Hollywood, Hondo, Lincoln, Nogal, Picacho, San Patricio, and Tinnie.

  1. Lincoln County Comprehensive Plan, August 2007, www.lincolncountynm.net, accessed September, 2011.

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