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Springer, New Mexico
Downtown Springer (2008)
Downtown Springer (2008)
Location within Colfax County and New Mexico
Location within Colfax County and New Mexico
Coordinates: 36°21′50″N 104°35′37″W / 36.36389°N 104.59361°W / 36.36389; -104.59361Coordinates: 36°21′50″N 104°35′37″W / 36.36389°N 104.59361°W / 36.36389; -104.59361
Country United States
State New Mexico
County Colfax
 • Total 2.26 sq mi (5.84 km2)
 • Land 2.20 sq mi (5.71 km2)
 • Water 0.05 sq mi (0.13 km2)
5,797 ft (1,767 m)
 • Total 1,047
 • Estimate 
 • Density 411.07/sq mi (158.71/km2)
Time zone UTC-7 (Mountain (MST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-6 (MDT)
ZIP codes
87729, 87747
Area code(s) 575
FIPS code 35-74800
GNIS feature ID 0895273

Springer is a town in Colfax County, New Mexico, United States. Its population was 1,047 at the 2010 census.


Former courthouse in Springer, NM IMG 0543
Former Colfax County Courthouse is now a historical museum

Springer was the county seat of Colfax County from 1882—1897. Springer was part of the Lucien B. Maxwell land grant. It is near the Cimarron Cutoff of the Santa Fe Trail. There was a range war in Springer in 1881, when Maxwell sold his land grant to a group of investors.

The former Colfax County Courthouse in Springer is now a visitor center and museum. It was built for $9,800 in the early 1880s. It has had multiple uses over the years, including the site of the Raton Reform School for Boys (1910–1917). It has also been a library, the Springer town hall, and a jail. Outside the courthouse museum is a tall monument to the Ten Commandments. There is also a marker honoring Lance Corporal Chad Robert Hildebrandt (October 12, 1983—October 17, 2005), the first casualty in the Iraq War from Springer.

The Springer Correctional Center, operated by the New Mexico Corrections Department, is located 2 miles (3 km) northwest of Springer. The correctional center is one of New Mexico's oldest detention facilities, having begun operation in 1909 as the New Mexico Boys' School.


Springer is located in southern Colfax County at 36°21′50″N 104°35′37″W / 36.36389°N 104.59361°W / 36.36389; -104.59361 (36.363976, -104.593491). It is in the valley of the Cimarron River, 6 miles (10 km) west of where that river flows into the Canadian River.

Interstate 25 passes along the west side of the town, with access from exits 412 and 414. I-25 leads north 40 miles (64 km) to Raton, the county seat, and southwest 68 miles (109 km) to Las Vegas, New Mexico. The western terminus of U.S. Routes 56 and 412 is in the center of Springer. The two routes together lead 82 miles (132 km) east to Clayton.

According to the United States Census Bureau, Springer has a total area of 1.5 square miles (3.8 km2), all land.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1910 550
1920 915 66.4%
1930 957 4.6%
1940 1,314 37.3%
1950 1,558 18.6%
1960 1,564 0.4%
1970 1,574 0.6%
1980 1,657 5.3%
1990 1,262 −23.8%
2000 1,285 1.8%
2010 1,047 −18.5%
2019 (est.) 906 −13.5%
U.S. Decennial Census

As of the census of 2000, there were 1,285 people, 520 households, and 372 families residing in the town. The population density was 876.6 people per square mile (337.5/km2). There were 605 housing units at an average density of 412.7 per square mile (158.9/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 79.46% White, 1.09% Native American, 14.94% from other races, and 4.51% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 69.96% of the population.

There were 520 households, out of which 33.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.2% were married couples living together, 14.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.3% were non-families. 26.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 13.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.41 and the average family size was 2.86.

In the town, the population was spread out, with 25.9% under the age of 18, 5.2% from 18 to 24, 25.1% from 25 to 44, 22.3% from 45 to 64, and 21.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females, there were 98.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.7 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $27,850, and the median income for a family was $34,563. Males had a median income of $24,479 versus $19,000 for females. The per capita income for the town was $14,606. About 14.9% of families and 16.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 28.0% of those under age 18 and 8.9% of those age 65 or over.

Notable people

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