ADVENTURES IN OUR AMERICAN DREAM travel blog

The Miraculous Stairway

All the building are adobe style

Jerry at Loretto Chapel

Gloria at Loretto Chapel, notice the pellets of snow on my hat...

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It is a beautiful Chapel!!

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Last one from the Chapel

Next..we did a bit of shopping

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Awesome Squash Blossom necklaces

View of the town with the Cathedral Basilica at the end

Another view

We had lunch at the India Palace

We saw a lot of colorful peppers

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Last one!


We are having a wonderful time in Santa Fe. We had planned to take a tour of the city but the weather was not participating. The wind has been blowing pellets of snow that looked just like Dippin Dots (ice cream) coming from the sky. :-)

We did manage to visit the awesome Loretto Chapel to see the Miraculous Stairway. It was absolutely beautiful and a "must see" if you are in the area. Here is a paste from Wikipedia, telling the story.

The Sisters of St. Loretto relate the story as follows:

Needing a way to get up to the choir loft the nuns prayed for St. Joseph's intercession for nine straight days. On the day after their novena ended a shabby looking stranger appeared at their door. He told the nuns he would build them a staircase but that he needed total privacy and locked himself in the chapel for three months. He used a small number of primitive tools including a square, a saw and some warm water and constructed a spiral staircase entirely of non-native wood. The identity of the carpenter is not known for as soon as the staircase was finally finished he was gone. Many witnesses, upon seeing the staircase, feel it was constructed by St. Joseph himself, as a miraculous occurrence.

The resulting staircase is an impressive work of carpentry. It ascends twenty feet, making two complete revolutions up to the choir loft without the use of nails or apparent center support. It has been surmised that the central spiral of the staircase is narrow enough to serve as a central beam. Nonetheless there was no attachment unto any wall or pole in the original stairway, although in 1887 -- 10 years after it was built -- a railing was added and the outer spiral was fastened to an adjacent pillar.[4] Instead of metal nails, the staircase was constructed using dowels or wooden pegs.[5]

The legend claims that the mystery had never been satisfactorily solved as to who the carpenter was or where he got his lumber, and that there were no reports of anyone seeing lumber delivered or even seeing the man come and go while the construction was being done. Since he left before the Mother Superior could pay him, the Sisters of Loretto offered a reward for the identity of the man, but it was never claimed.

After visiting Loretto Chapel, we did a bit of shopping. They have a lot of colorful pottery and unusual items. There are tons of peppers hanging all over the town. All the building are done in a beautiful adobe style. We would love to have more time in this awesome town and will definitely be back later. Our next stop will be in Albuquerque, NM. Check back later for more from New Mexico.

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