Salinas Pueblo Missions National Monument
Quarai Mission and Ruins
National Parks Ranger Marcus Taylor greeting visitors outside
the Quarai Ruins Museum and Visitor Center.
Significant restoration work has been completed and is ongoing
on the mission ruin.
Currently, the ancient pueblo ruins are visible as masonry rubble
A tower structure, typical of pre-Contact pueblos, is incorporated into the convent
area, as is a kiva.
The artist conceptions of Quarai presented by site interpretations.
Conquistador Juan de Oñate visited Quarai in 1598 to accept
its oath of allegiance to the Spanish Crown.
During the 1600s, three Spanish priests at Quarai were heads of the Spanish
Inquisition. The alcade (mayor) was accused of encouraging
Native katchina dances and eventually banished by the Inquisitors. Inquisition
records reveal some of the pueblo's history during Spanish occupation
and governance of the region.
Alonso de Benavides reported "fourteen of fifteen pueblos
which must have
more than 10,000 souls." The Salinas District was
the easternmost of mission districts in Nuevo Mexico.
Salinas Ruins Placemarks
NPS Website: Salinas Pueblo Missions National
Quarai is located north of Mountainair and southeast
of Estania, on the outkirts of Punta de Agua. Abó is just off
US highway 60 west of Mountainair. The mission ruins are southeast
of Belen and northeast of Socorro.