Contested Homelands: Knowledge, History and Culture of Historic Santa Fe, New Mexico

A Virtual 2021 Workshop for Teachers

Santa Fe is often introduced into the discussion of American history around the topic of European exploration and expansion or sometimes later yet as a discussion about the establishment of the trading route along the Santa Fe Trail. However, vibrant communities flourished in this place long before European exploration and later settlement. As this region moved toward statehood, the United States inherited the memory and material creations of the region. The place is itself a homeland with a larger story.

We seek to put historical sites, documents and resources of the Santa Fe historic area into context through a focused conceptual study on homelands. The following essential questions will guide the work of participants. What are homelands? How do homelands stretch, shrink, and shift over time? What happens when homelands overlap with one another? How does (perpetual) colonization, conquering, and resistance transform homelands and create new ones? What is the spiritual story of a homeland? How do the artistic products and structures of a homeland tell a story? What connections do people have to a homeland and how are these connections manifested in history and in present-day? And importantly, how do the Camino Real, and the Palace of the Governors exemplify the multifarious and layered unfolding of homeland in an area that had a vibrant system of Pueblo communities prior to European settlement?

Virtual Workshop due to Covid-19

Due to COVID-19 we will proceed with this NEH Landmarks program as a virtual workshop. The workshop will take place with asynchronous and synchronous virtual learning. The workshop dates are:

June 13-June 18, 2021, Follow up Session July 16, 2021

June 27-July 2, 2021, Follow up Session July 30, 2021

More information about the schedule can be found on the Workshop Agenda page.


In the summer of 2021, the University of New Mexico will host two, one-week virtual teacher workshops. Santa Fe, a city that boasts a 400+ year history, as the recognized capital will be the focus of this workshop. However, settlement in the area by Pueblo Indian groups predates European contact; they settled along the banks of Rio Grande as early as the 6th century CE.

The virtual workshops will be structured around the concept of homelands and include the study of historic sites, artifacts and stories in historic Santa Fe, New Mexico and surrounding communities. Specifically, the Camino Real de Tierra Adentro and the Palace of the Governors will be interpreted, studied and contrasted with the Pueblo history of the region to understand the complexity of historical homelands.

Virtual Workshop Session 1: June 13-June 18, 2021, Follow up Session July 16, 2021

Virtual Workshop Session 2: June 27-July 2, 2021, Follow up Session July 30, 2021

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this workshop program do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Application Information

1. Purpose of the program:

NEH Landmarks of American History and Culture will give K-12 educators an opportunity to enrich and revitalize their teaching through the study of humanities topics that bear upon K- 12 education. Participants will receive a certificate upon completion of the program, but programs are not intended to duplicate graduate-level courses.

2. What is provided for and required of participants? (Stipend, Tenure, Conditions of the Award)

  • Participants, or Summer Scholars, are offered a stipend for participation in the project. The $1300.00 stipend is taxable.  The stipend is intended to help cover basic academic expenses associated with participation.
  • To participate in a program all selected teachers must attend all meetings and engage fully as professionals in the work of the project. During the project, participants may not undertake teaching assignments or professional activities unrelated to their participation in the project. Those who, for any reason, do not complete the full tenure of the project will receive a reduced stipend.
  • Participants must submit an evaluation at the end of the project’s workshop period.

3. Who is eligible?

All K-12 teachers working in public, private and homeschool situations can apply.

In any given year, an individual may apply to a maximum of two Seminars, Institutes, or Landmarks, but may attend only one.

4. How will participants be selected?

A selection committee, comprised of the project director and two colleagues, will evaluate all complete applications to select a group of Summer Scholars and to identify alternates.

The section panel will consider the following factors to select participants:

  • The applicant’s effectiveness and commitment as a teacher/educator;
  • The applicant’s intellectual interests as they relate to the topic of the Landmark program;
  • The applicant’s perspectives, skills, or experiences that will contribute to the program;
  • Evidence that participation will have a long-term impact on the applicant’s teaching.
  • At least three spaces per week (up to six spaces total for a program) may be reserved for teachers who are new to the profession (five years or less of teaching experience).
  • Primary consideration is given to those who have not previously attended an NEH Landmark program.

5. What comprises a complete application?

Applicant data form that includes the following elements:

  • Participant name
  • Home address, state and  zip code
  • Preferred email
  • Preferred phone number
  • Institution name, city, and state; institution type;
  • Grade levels taught; subjects taught; number of years of teaching experience; and number of students taught per year.
  • List of previously attended NEH Landmarks of American History Workshops
  • A résumé (1-2 pages)
  • A 2-3 page statement of interest essay indicating why you are interested in the NEH Landmarks of American History and Culture Workshop titled, Contested Homelands: Knowledge, History and  Culture of Historic Santa Fe workshop. Describe how you envision the workshop enhancing your knowledge and practice. What relevant experience will you contribute to the workshop.

6. When and how should an application be submitted?

  • Applications due March 1, 2021
  • Please apply using the submission form on the project website. The tab is titled Application Link.

**Applications sent to the NEH will not be reviewed.

7. When will applicants be notified and need to respond?

  • Friday, March 26, 2021: All applicants will be notified of their acceptance. Once a selected  applicant has accepted an offer to attend any NEH Summer Program (NEH Summer Seminar, Institute, or Landmark), they may not accept an additional offer or withdraw in order to accept a different offer.
  • Friday, April 2, 2021: Successful applicants must accept or decline their offer(s). This date is required by the NEH of all projects.

8. How might COVID affect this project?

Note Regarding COVID-19: The Contested Homelands workshop will be held as a virtual workshop in the summer of 2021.

9. Will the process be fair?


Endowment programs do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or age. For further information, write to the Equal Opportunity Officer, National Endowment for the Humanities, 400 7th Street, SW, Washington, DC 20024.

TDD: 202-606-8282 (this is a special telephone device for the Deaf).

Photo Gallery


Welcome to website for the NEH Landmarks of American History and Culture workshop-Contested Homelands: Knowledge, History and Culture of Historic Santa Fe. This website will be updated regularly. More information to come soon.


Rebecca M. Sánchez, PhD/MFA-Project Director

Mia Sosa-Provencio, PhD- Assistant Director