Dawson New Mexico Association

528 N. First Street
Raton, NM 87740
Joe Bacca
Bobbie Jo Bacca
John Gabriele
Vivien Pick
John Bizyak
Ed and Betty Zavala

Click here to view a panorama photo of Dawson (circa early 1950's)

Click here to view a drone video of the Dawson Cemetery in 2016

Click here to view a drone video of Dawson, Rail Canyon,
and Capitan Hill in 2016

The 2016 Dawson Reunion was held on Saturday and Sunday, September 3 and 4, 2016. You may open and download the Dawson Association Newsletter for the 2016 reunion by clicking here. The Dawson Association has decided to return to the practice of mailing out the reunion newsletter instead of relying on email. We hope that this will reach more of our members with information about the next Dawson Reunion. This year many of our former reunion attendees received a post card in the mail which asked for their updated email addresses. On that card was the photo below which is of a sculpture reproduction of a Native American Indian by Frederick Remington, famous artist of the early American West. This sculpture, purchased by the current owners, stands above the area which was the former town of Dawson, NM as a memorial to the original Native American Indians of this area.

The 2016 Dawson Reunion Was Another Success! Click here to see some of the Dawson Reunion Picnic photos.

A special group photo was taken of all those who attended the 2016 reunion who lived or were born in Dawson, NM. If you took a photo of this group at the reunion which shows everyone, please send a copy to Joe Bacca at baccaj2000@msn.com .

The 2016 Dawson Reunion was a great time for everyone. There were 629 waivers signed at the Dawson gate to enter the reunion picnic on Sunday, September 4, 2016 and over 165 people who were at the social at the Elks Club on Saturday night. Over 120 people signed the registry at the Raton Museum. The raffle was a high point of the afternoon. Here are the names of the people who donated and who won items for the raffle.


1. Six Photos of Dawson Cemetery donated by the Bacca children
2. Shadow box with dairy token donated by Carolyn Redilfo
3. Miner lunch Pail donated by Joe & Sue Bacca
4. Carbide lamp donated by Joe & Sue Bacca
5. Dawson book by Toby Smith donated by the Dawson Association Committee
6. Miner's hat donated by Park Clark
7. Handmade Quilt donated by Vivien Pick
8. Three orignial Dawson Coal Invoices donated by Pietro Scarafiotti
9. Miners and ghost town book donated by Joe and Sue Bacca
10. Two decorated mule shoes donated by Karen Mctelvie and John Gabriele
11. Poster and Dawson bottle donated by Bobbie Bacca


1. Zana Kaba: Dawson Cemetery Picture
2. Jimmy Gonzales: Dawson Cemetery Picture
3. Janice Lucero: Dawson Cemetery Picture
4. John A: Dawson Cemetery Picture
5. Pete Scarafiotti: Dawson Cemetery Picture
6. Paula Trujillo: Dawson Cemetery Picture
7. Mark Lorenzo: Shadow Box with a Dawson Dairy token
8. Pete Scarafiotti: Miner Lunch Pail
9. Helen Baird: Miners Carbide Lamp
10. Tony Linhart: Toby Smith Book
11. Anthony Trujillo: Miner's Hat
12. Kay Farley: Handmade Dawson Quilt
13. Janice Lucero: Dawson Paper Coal Invoice
14. Daniel Stringer: Dawson Coal Paper Invoice
15. Shane Rhubush: Dawson Coal Paper Invoice
16. Donna Brassford: Miners and ghost Towns of New Mexico Book
17. Janice Lucero: Decorated Mule Shoe
18. Giles: Decorated Mule Shoe
19. Tovar Sanchez: Dawson Bottle and Dawson CD with pictures
20. Anthony Trujillo: Dawson Poster and Dawson CD with pictures
21. Vickie Trujillo: Dawson Poster and Rail Rod spike from Dawson
22. Angelo Muniz: Dawson Poster and Rail Road Spike from Dawson
23. Patrick Sanchez: Dawson Poster and a Dawson CD with Pictures

Emery Corley who attended the 2014 Dawson Reunion and was a raffle donor, wrote an article about his experience in the Philmont Staff Association publication, "High Country" (February 2015). Click here to read the article on page 33 of the magazine. Special thanks to the Philmont Staff Association for allowing us to share this article. Emery Corley is an Attorney at Law in St. Louis, MO. Reprinted on the Dawson Association web site with permission of High Country ®, the official magazine of the Philmont Staff Association.

Dawson Remembered in Ceremony at Raton, NM:
In 1913, the mining community of Dawson, New Mexico was rocked to its very foundations by an explosion in the Stag Canon #2 Mine that killed 263 miners. On October 20, 2013, Irene Buongiorno representing Giuseppe Perrone, the Italian Consul General of Los Angeles presented Joe Bacca from the Dawson New Mexico Association with a metal plaque commemorating the 100th anniversary of that deadly event. The plaque will be installed at a ceremony at the Dawson Cemetery during the biannual Dawson reunion picnic held on Labor Day weekend. Click here to see the presentation and photos.

I received an email from Manlio Badiali who lives in Modena, Italy. He asked that I share the names of 15 Dawson miners from his village of Modena who lost their lives in the 1913 Dawson mine explosion. This loss of life was a terrible tragedy for the families and loved ones of these miners who left their homes to work in the Dawson mines. Click here to see the names and ages of those brave men.

Also click here to see coverage by KRQE Albuqureque, NM television coverage of the event.

KRTN Radio of Raton, NM has posted a very interesting interview of Emagene Saracino and her memories of living in Dawson, NM. You can read the interview by clicking here for their KRTN Radio web site.

New Documentaries about Dawson

An experienced documentary film director and producer are in the process of creating a public documentary of Dawson, New Mexico titled, "Canaries in a Coal Mine". The documentary will be directed by Fulvio Ottaviano and produced by Claudio Ruben. The story will be told through the point of view of its immigrant communities. Please visit their web site here and learn more about this amazing documentary by viewing a brief preview.

Emily Fraser, an alumni of the Stanford Documentary Film MFA program, is currently producing a documentary film about Dawson's closing in 1950 and the remarkable way Dawsonites from around the country have kept its spirit alive in the 65 years since. If you'd like to share your stories for the film, please contact Emily at 703.220.4971 or emilyefraser@gmail.com. More information about Emily and her work is available at emilyelizabethfilms.com.

Joe Bacca and his daughter have scanned over 400 old Dawson photographs taken over the years and place them on a CD. The photo CD is available for a $10 purchase by contacting Joe at his e-mail which is baccaj2000@msn.com . The proceeds from the sales of the CD will be used to offset expenses incurred in sponsoring the Dawson Reunion every two years. We were also pleased to hear that over 200 folks visted the Raton Museum and toured the Dawson exhibits.

We received an e-mail from Marty Tschetter from Greenville, NC stating that he recently came across an old 1924 Dawson, NM photograph at the Raton Museum. What makes this photograph so interesting is that it shows a Dawson coal miner writing the final score of the 1924 Baseball World Series on the side of a coal car that is going to be sent down into the Dawson coal mines to let the workers know the final score. You can see these two photos by clicking here. Marty has also sent copies of these photographs to the National Baseball Museum in Cooperstown, NY on behalf of the Raton Museum. A special thanks to Marty and to Roger Sanchez, Curator of the Raton Museum, for allowing Marty to scan these old photos and sending them to the National Baseball Museum.

There has been a special request made by Brian Beker, a documentary film producer, for anyone who might have information on early 1920 Dawson resident and aviation pioneer by the name of Jules "J. J." VanDersarl. The Raton Range newspaper published a short article on Mr. Beker's request on October 4, 2010. You can read this article by clicking here.

If you have any questions about future Dawson reunions, you may contact any member of the Dawson Reunion committee who is listed below:

Joe & Sue Bacca, e-mail: baccaj2000@msn.com or tele: (575) 707-0703
Bobbie Jo Bacca, e-mail: bobbiejobacca@yahoo.com or tele: (575) 707-2624
John Gabriele, e-mail: kmckelvie233@gmail.com or tele: (575) 477-0778
John Bizyak, e-mail: bizyak@msn.com, tele: (928) 757-9333
Vivien Andrews, e-mail: viv2quilt@gmail.com or tele: (575) 707-3839
Edward & Betty Zavala, e-mail: speedyzavala@yahoo.com or tele: (575) 445-8544
Emagene Saracino tele: (575) 445-8049
Mrs. Charles G. Buttram (Lorraine), tele: (575) 445-8709
Chris Palomino, tele: (702) 575-0056
Chuck Speed, e-mail: speedo@chuckspeed.com or tele: (806) 359-9177
Ludi Pacheco, Tele: (575) 770-9061
Park Clark, Tele: email: park56@msn.com tele: (575) 445-3168
Michael & Marty & Siobhan (Daughter) Sweeney, tele: (505) 454-1765 or (505) 454-9096