Rio Arriba is named after the Spanish designation of the region meaning “upper river”.
Surrounding County Courthouses:
N – Archuleta County, Colorado and Conejos County, Colorado
E – Taos County and Mora County
S – Santa Fe County, Los Alamos County and Sandoval County
W – San Juan County
Created: January 29 1852
San Pedro de Chamita 1852
Los Luceros 1852 – 1860
Plaza de Alcade 1860 – 1880
Tierra Amarilla 1880 – present
County Courthouse – Tierra Amarilla
Location: 7 Main Street – Highway 512 / Highway 162
Built: 1916 – 1917
Style: Spanish Classical Revival
Architect: Issac Hamilton Rapp
Contractor: C M Campbell & R E Campbell of Santa Fe
Description: The building faces north and is a two story buff colored brick and concrete structure. The building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of Tierra Amarilla. The north front has three arches on the first story with a recessed entrance. Above the entrance are four white colored columns faming three windows. Around the roof edge is a white colored wide border projecting from the building. The roof line is flat. The interior has a switch back stair case ascending to the County District Court courtroom on the second story. The ceilings are pressed tin. The building houses the County District Court of the 1st Judicial District.
See: The architect, Issac Hamilton Rapp, also designed courthouses in Colorado in Las Animas County, in New Mexico in Chaves County and in Texas in Donley County.
See: The 1st Judicial District includes Los Alamos County and Santa Fe County.
History: The county was created in 1852 and San Pedro de Chamita was designated as the county sear. In 1860 the county seat was moved to Los Luceios. In 1880, the county seat was moved to Plaza de Alcade. In 1880 the county seat was moved to Tierra Amarilla. The first courthouse was built in 1880. The courthouse was demolished when the second and present courthouse was constructed in constructed in 1916 to 1917.
County Administration Building – Tierra Amarilla
Location: 10 Main Street – Highway 512 / Highway 162
Built: 1999 – 200
Architect: Architectural Alliance, Inc.
Contractor: Star Construction, Inc.
Description: The building faces south and is a one story buff colored brick and concrete structure. The building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of the town. The building forms a “U” shape with an east and west wing. The south front has a small plaza with central entrance. The roof is hipped.
County Courthouse - Tierra Amarilla
County District Court courtroom
Commissioner Minutes – contractor
County Administration Building - Tierra Amarilla
County Commissioner’s Meeting Room
Photos taken 2007 and 2016