This is one of the oldest adobe structures in the Tularosa Basin. Like many homes in early Hispanic settlements, it started out as only one or two rooms and was expanded through the years. The discovery of the original “fire holes,” used for self defense, help date parts of the building to the 1850s.
The 2-foot adobe walls and high ceilings helped to keep the rooms cool in the summer and retain the heat in the winter. The original roof was dirt and still sits below a new shed type style roof. The living room still has the original mud plaster covered with many coats of paint.
At one time the building was a quarter block long in the shape of a “U” with an enclosed courtyard. The courtyard was used to protect animals at night and defend against hostile attacks.
Restoration began in the 1960s by the Campbells and finished in 1976–1980 by Shirley Powell, mother of the present owner.
Your hosts, Don and Sylvia Powell are both native to Tularosa. Don is a retired teacher and Sylvia a retired nurse. In 1995, they opened “La Tienda Vieja,” an antique store located across the street from Hacienda De Mi Madre. The building that houses the antique store and their living quarters has been in Sylvia’s family since 1860. It was a general store and post office run by Louis Vigil, her great-grandfather. This building was restored in 1980 and is on the National Register of Historic Buildings.