Stephen B. Elkins Doña Ana County, New Mexico

Stephen B. Elkins crossed the plains to New Mexico as a "bullpuncher," arriving in Mesilla with less than a dollar in his pocket. He prepared for the practice of the law in that town, and for a time was associated with Thomas B. Catron. The two made a strong combination Catron as a lawyer, Elkins as a politician. He was early recognized as being extremely shrewd and diplomatic, and quick to take advantage of the slightest technicalities in the crudely framed early laws of the Territory. One of his early undertakings in New Mexico was in the capacity of clerk in the Quartermaster's Department at Mesilla. Mr. Elkins might have remained there indefinitely and missed a brilliant career, had he not spelled the name "Arizonia" in one of the reports he was writing for his superior. This resulted in his immediate discharge, and he concluded to study law.

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Source: History of New Mexico, Its Resources and People, Volume II, Pacific States Publishing Co., 1907.

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Created 1996 by Charles Barnum & 2016 by Judy White