Above: Headwaters of the Río Bonito in Lincoln National Forest, 1979.
They found the valley, the clean mountain valley, and they named their settlement La Placita del Rio Bonito—The Little Village of the Pretty River. Some rode in ox-wagons, others drove packsaddle mules and burros, carriers of their worldly goods. And a herd of cattle, and a band of saddle ponies, each in the charge of mounted vaqueros. … In 1869, almost two decades after the Spanish first settled the valley, the village name was changed to Lincoln. … Lincoln Town, then and throughout its years, never boomed but rather mellowed in Spanish dignity. To this day it is still the Little Village of the Pretty River.