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Things to Do in Lincoln, New Mexico

Lincoln Things to Do

Lincoln is a sleepy little town in the hills of New Mexico. It was once the home to Billy the Kid (William H. Bonney). The town itself is only one road and has about 15-20 buildings on it, but there’s still plenty to see and learn during your visit.

Visitor Center and Museum

If you stop at Lincoln’s Visitor Center you can pick up tickets to the several historic properties in town. Be sure to keep this ticket with you as proof of paid admission. However, before you head off to see the sights, explore the Visitor’s Center; it’s an attraction in its own right. It carefully outlines the historical events that happened in Lincoln, including the Lincoln County War and detailed information about Billy the Kid. The story is told in a series of informational panels. Other exhibits show Pueblo culture and life in Lincoln County during the early years of settlement, with items of furniture and household goods.

Historic Properties

The majority of the buildings are museums that have some connection with Billy the Kid and the Regulators. If you’re in town to learn Lincoln’s rich 19th and early 20th century history, the primary buildings you’ll want to see are the Montaño Store, San Juan Mission Church, The Torreon, The Tunstall Store and the Courthouse (these are included in the admission ticket). The Courthouse is where Billy the Kid made his infamous April 1881 escape as he killed deputy sheriffs as he was awaiting his execution for the murder of Sheriff William J. Brady. Other interesting places to see include commercial and private residences, such as the Thomas W. Watson House, The Dolan Outpost, former Curry Saloon, La Placita and the Wortley Hotel.

Photography is allowed in many buildings, but no flash.

Pageant Day

Once a year the inhabitants of Lincoln reenact the last escape of Billy the kid from Lincoln County Jail, outdoors, with live horses and guns. The local people make up the casts and some are actually descendants of those they play.

If you like westerns, you’ll see and feel it in Lincoln. It’s a great friendly little town. Fun fact: Governor Lew Wallace, the author of Ben Hur, spent time socializing here.

Editor’s Note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about things to do in Lincoln, New Mexico.

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