Spent most of the day in downtown Santa Fe .. focal point is a green park ‘square’ in town called ‘The Plaza’ .. Shopping to had for several blocks around ‘The Plaza’ .. Local native craft venders are lined up with their jewelry .. pottery .. fiber crafts .. etc .. etc .. Numerous clothing stores .. Art galleries .. Sculpture galleries and gardens.. and of course many restaurants in the vicinity. We would have liked to have been visiting during the weekend .. when many more venders and live bands perform on The Plaza.. but .. for a week day .. there were quite a few people milling around.
Alot of churches around downtown .. one of the most interesting was the ‘Loretto Chapel’ .. beautiful architecture .. and an amazing story about it’s staircase to the choir loft. Church was built in 1870’s .. seems as though a conventional stairway could not be built because it would impact seating capacity of church. As legend has it .. on the last day of prayers by ‘The Sisters of Loretto’ a mysterious carpenter arrived to design and construct a circular stairway ! Tools on his donkey were .. a saw .. a T-square .. hammer and tubs to soak the wood. ‘Miraculous stairway’ contains 33 steps in two full 360 degree turns. Stairway has no center support nor is it held from the side .. it’s full weight rests on the final tread. Upon completion .. carpenter disappeared .. no records found for any materials purchased.. Originally built with no railing .. 1880’s a railing was installed …. How was this ever designed and built … no nails .. just wooden pegs. There is no known duplication of this design .. Engineers and Architects still marvel at it’s design.. Needless to say this is a very popular tourist attraction .. all seats in Church were almost filled.
Other random photos from today’s visit..