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History of the Monument

White Sands Mill, 1910
Photo Courtesy of CA and Roy Gilliland

White Sands became a National Monument in 1933.

Consequently, White Sands celebrated its 75th anniversary on January 19, 2008.

Here is a brief article on the Monument's history.


If you are looking for in-depth information, Dunes and Dreams: A History of White Sands National Monument by Michael Welsh is the ultimate description.

You can read the entire paper online for free, including fantastic photos.

One of these photos was taken in the 1930s and shows a lady tow-skiing through the White Sands. Enjoy the good ole days.


And here is an absolute gem for you:

National Geographic featured a White Sands article in its August 1935 issue. Thanks to the nice folks at the Alamogordo Public Library (Thank you Steven!) you can check it out right here. Included are 12 black & white illustrations.

(PDF File, 6 MB)

Photo: G.A. Grant

You can either download the complete PDF file (Click Here) or you can view the individual pages online. Below are the links to the individual pages, in order left to right:


Here you can watch a White Sands vintage clip from 1938.

Furthermore, you will find a nice sum-up on the history of the Monument in this fine brochure.




To the best of our knowledge all information is current. If you should discover any errors, however, please let us know. Thanks!




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