New Mexico is a geographically large, sparsely populated, rural state. Its documentary history spans the period from the late sixteenth century to the present day. Many of the documents of the Spanish Colonial Period (1598-1821), the Mexican Republic Period (1821-1846), and the American Territorial Period (1846-1912) reside in the archival facility of the New Mexico State Records Center and Archives (NMSRCA). Over the years it has become evident that there is much more written documentation concerning New Mexico's history than is in the possession of the state archives. A notable segment of that documentation (records) is in the possession of the state's 33 counties, 99 municipalities and other repositories.
The National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), a branch of the National Archives and Records Administration, awards federal grants which target preservation of Historical Records. The granting process requires review and recommendations by individual State Advisory Boards, in New Mexico this is the New Mexico Historical Records Advisory Board.
The New Mexico Historical Records Advisory Board (NMHRAB) was created according NHPRC's mandate in 1975 through gubernatorial appointments. The NMHRAB mission: Recognizing the cultural diversity of the state, the mission of the New Mexico Historical Records Advisory Board is to advocate the preservation of the historical records of the state and to stimulate public access to the state's historical records. The members of the NMHRAB are committed to promoting the NHPRC program throughout the state.
The NMHRAB accepts and reviews grant proposals of statewide scope with nation wide interest submitted by state/local government entities or private record repositories that relate to the goals and objectives of the NHPRC. The board encourages projects that identify, preserve, increase accessibility to, and promote the use of New Mexico's historical records and documentary sources. New Mexico's historical documents represent the invaluable heritage of the state. These documents chronicle important historical developments and provide valuable insight into our state and national cultures.