Programs & Services

Two Ways to Experience Lincoln Historic Site This Summer

Lincoln Historic Site

The interior of the Convento in Lincoln. Photograph by Kenneth Walter. Courtesy NM Dept. of Cultural Affairs.

Few historically significant properties in the world remain largely untouched after their glory days. That is not the case in southeastern New Mexico’s storied Lincoln Historic Site.

More than 50 people met a violent end along the main road between 1870 and 1886 during the Lincoln County War. With the infamy of Billy the Kid and notoriety of Pat Garrett, the history of Lincoln is riddled with acts of revenge, vigilante justice, and senseless violence that date back nearly 150 years.

“Lincoln takes on an other-worldly atmosphere when you walk through, especially at night, so now we open up the town at night periodically so visitors can experience that,” says Tim Roberts, regional manager for Lincoln and Fort Stanton Historic Sites. “It’s very easy to imagine you’re walking in the footsteps of the people who lived here.”

On Thursday, August 1st at 6 p.m. Lincoln hosts a tour of “The Most Dangerous Street in America!” Lincoln After Dark tickets are $5 per person; children 12 and under are free. Tours are on the hour from 7 through 9 p.m. Call 575-653-4025 for more information and to reserve tickets.

The historic site comes alive during Old Lincoln Days, Friday–Sunday, Aug. 3–5, 8:30 a.m.–10 p.m. The folk pageant features re-enactors portraying Billy the Kid’s last escape and the notorious Lincoln County War — plus food vendors, live music, and a parade.

Old Lincoln Days

Friday–Sunday, Aug. 3–5
8:30 a.m.–10 p.m

All Day: Food concessions and arts & crafts by Dr. Woods House, Pageant Grounds, and Community Church

8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.: Museums open

9 a.m.–5 p.m.: Shops open

8 p.m.: Presentation to Hall of Fame recipient, Pageant Grounds

8:30 p.m.: Performance of “Last Escape of Billy the Kid,” Pageant Grounds

Lincoln is open 9 a.m.–5 p.m. 7 days a week. (7 of the 9 buildings begin closing at 4:30 p.m.). Admission $5. Free to NM residents on the first Sunday of each month. Children 16 and under are always admitted free. Wednesday admission is free to New Mexico resident seniors with ID.

Lincoln’s nearby attractions include a downhill ski resort, four public golf courses, two casinos, and a horse racing track (Ruidoso, Ruidoso Downs, and the Mescalero Apache Reservation); Smokey Bear Historical Park (Capitan); Hubbard Museum of the American West (Ruidoso Downs); Valley of Fires National Recreation Area (34 miles west on Hwy 380); Roswell Museum and Art Center and the International UFO Museum and Research Center (57 miles east in Roswell).

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