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Ora W. Blanchard

Ora Harden Wallace was born October 26, 1895, in Mayhill, Otero County, New Mexico Territory, the daughter of Harden Wills Curtis and Alfred Dashiell Wallace, Jr. (1872-1954), a postman. The family lived in Roswell, Chaves County, New Mexico in 1910.

In 1918 Ora married Francis Lincoln Blanchard, a sheep farmer, blacksmith and welder in South Springs, Chaves County. By 1940 they were living in East Grand Plains, Chaves County. Together they had five children: Francis L. Blanchard (1937), Annie L. Blanchard (1929), Sophia Wallace Blanchard (1926-2012), Eva C. Blanchard (1925) and Ora L. Blanchard (1923).

Ora Blanchard's husband, Francis, was involved in mining in the Hansonburg District in the mid-1900s, and his uncle, Judge Charles Blanchard (1842-1914), had been a part owner in the Williams mine there in 1881.

After her husband's death in 1951, Ora served as caretaker of the (closed) Blanchard mine in the Hansonburg District, Socorro County. She lived the life of a recluse in a small house below the Blanchard claims where many interesting minerals were collected over the years. Her response to visitors was said to be somewhat unpredictable, from friendly to suspicious, but she had a great love of minerals and offered much guidance to people she liked. In her declining years many visiting collectors brought her food and supplies. She died February 15, 1968, in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

US Federal Census 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.
Social Security Death Index.
TAGGART, J. E., et al. (1989) Famous mineral localities: The Hansonburg District, Socorro County, New Mexico. <1>Mineralogical Record, 20 (1), 31-46.
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WILSON, Wendell E. (2019)
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The Mineralogical Record - Ora W. Blanchard
The Mineralogical Record - Ora W. Blanchard Ora Blanchard's business card for the years in which she served as caretaker of the Blanchard mine (1950s through the mid-1960s)
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