The Chimayó Museum is dedicated to inspiring and educating the public, particularly the youth, about the history and culture of Chimayó and surrounding communities. Located in the Plaza del Cerro, one of Chimayós most significant historic neighborhoods, the museum also aims to support local writers, musicians, artists and craftspeople who promote the artistic heritage of the region.
Museum attractions include historic artifacts donated by supporters and vintage photographs that illustrate life in Chimayó in the early twentieth century. Many of these pictures were taken by Prudence Clark, a Presbyterian missionary schoolteacher who came to Chimayó in 1900.
In addition, the museum building itself breathes living history. The Plaza del Cerro where it is situated was originally organized as a fortified community in the second half of the eighteenth century by the Spanish colonial administration of New Mexico. The rectangular plaza is made up of a contiguous row of adobe buildings, designed to protect its residents from attack. Historians and architects have long lauded the Plaza del Cerro as the best surviving example of a fortified plaza in New Mexico.
The museum building, located on the northeast corner of the plaza, was home to José Ramón Ortega y Vigil and Petra Mestas Ortega, from the renowned Ortega family of weavers, in the nineteenth century. This classic New Mexican adobe home features white-washed, mud-plastered interior walls, vigas (ceiling beams) and hardened mud floors. The home was remodeled in the late 1960s by David Ortega, a descendant of the original owners. The house, where José Ramón and his wife, Petra Mestas, raised 14 children is now home to exhibits honoring the past and present Chimayó.
The Chimayó Museum also provides a venue for special events and programs. It plays host to historians, genealogists, storytellers, poets, musicians, dancers and community advocates. New exhibits and showings are mounted periodically. In the Los Maestros del Norte program, young students come to the museum to learn traditional New Mexican arts and crafts from skilled artisans.


Plaza del Cerro | Chimayó, NM 87522Hours: April through October | Wednesday – Friday | 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.November through March | Fridays only | 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Directions:Plaza del Cerro Road (CR94E): Just South of Ortegas Weaving Shop, near the intersection of State Road 76 and Juan Medina Road (CR98).