Crocker Ltd, Santa Fe, New Mexico


Structural Underpinning

Wall Stabilization & Repair

Historic Plasters & Finishes

Drainage Systems


International Services



Staff & Licenses

Awards & Citations


Recommended Reading


Contact Us


Capabilities Statement


Selected Projects: Historic Preservation

Statement of Qualifications


    Understanding Adobe

Architectural Conservation  
2019 Galisteo Street, Suite N-10 A  
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87505  
505/ 982.2448  •  877/ 982.2448  

The State Makes a Breakthrough
Ed Crocker

The State of New Mexico is the deed-holder of a great many historic properties. It is, in fact, probably second only to the three Roman Catholic dioceses as the owner of sheer numbers and important examples of our built heritage.

Among the historic properties and sites for which the State is steward are the Palace of the Governors; the Lincoln County Courthouse, which along with the rest of the town (also owned by the State), is renowned as the locus of the Lincoln County wars and the failed incarceration of Billy the Kid; the Painted Kiva at Coronado State Monument; the mud-henge like remains of Fort Selden near Doña Ana; Hewett House in Santa Fe, occupied by the founder of the Museum of New Mexico and the School of American Research; Fort Sumner at Bosque Redondo, destination of The Long Walk of the Navajo and a site of conscience.

Needless to say, being steward of so many and such diverse cultural properties is a monumental responsibility and the challenges are legion. The State has to not only place these sites in their highest and best use, but to protect, interpret, maintain, preserve, and restore them.

Being a practitioner of benign neglect on my own house, I am sympathetic to the onerous test of accountability.

Nevertheless, as a taxpayer and a citizen who takes a deep interest in these properties, I do expect my governing agencies to make good decisions when it comes to the care of our heritage. This has not always been the case, and I can understand the reasons; budget shortfalls, lack of trained staff, and conflicts between agencies that often do not share the same goals all confederate against the historic resource.

One of the most common conflicts that I have seen is the disjunction between the General Services Administration's Property Control Division which holds the purse strings and lets the contracts, and the various components of the Department of Cultural Affairs (which includes the Museum of New Mexico, State Monuments and the Historic Preservation Division) which have the greatest interest in the cultural properties.

It has sometimes been the case that Property Control wasn't particularly interested in the message that a historic site conveys, and was therefore not attentive to the qualifications of the professionals to whom it granted key contracts for maintenance and restoration. That has been maddeningly frustrating to both the Department of Cultural Affairs and those of us in the private sector, whether contractors, architects or engineers who compete for those contracts.

The Administration/Museum Building at Fort Stanton, New Mexico -- Crocker Ltd's latest historic preservation project.

I am pleased to report a Major Breakthrough. There was recently a pre-proposal meeting concerning stabilization and restoration work at Fort Stanton, in Lincoln County. The agenda was prepared and presented by Property Control Division staff architect Lemoyne Blackshear, and project manager Marty Dallman. This request for proposals utterly shattered the State's historic mold for letting this type of preservation contract.

The most important change is in the grading system used to select the first cut of contractors who will then be interviewed for the job. The new system weighs heavily in favor of qualifications and past performance on similar projects over price.

The visionary approach will go a long way toward ensuring that the State gets its money's worth and that historic resources get a better level of care. I congratulate Property Control Division staff for implementing the change, and I know my enthusiasm is shared by the Department of Cultural Affairs whose efforts to make this happen have been intense and of long duration.

Crocker Ltd
2019 Galisteo Street, Suite N-10 A  •  Suite L  •  Santa Fe, New Mexico 87505
tel 505/ 982.2448  •  fax 505/ 995.9877
toll free 877/ 982.2448

Helical Piers  |  Micropiles  |  Wall Stabilization & Repair  |  Historic Plasters & Finishes  |  Drainage Systems
Consulting  |  International Services  |  Projects  |  Awards & Citations
Articles  |  Contact Us  |  Staff & Licenses  |  Home
Moisture Remediation for Your Home