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Taos Plaza is a center of shops and monuments in Taos, New Mexico.
Located in Taos, New Mexico. Spanish settlers began their colonization of the Taos Valley in 1616, but the Plaza dates to the late 18th century when the Don Fernando de Taos Land Grant was ceded to the settlers from the Taos Pueblo in 1796 by Don Fernando de Chacon, Governor of New Mexico.
Taos Plaza served for decades as the central meeting place in the valley and survived numerous fires that destroyed several older buildings.
Nearby is the home of Charles Bent, who was appointed Governor of New Mexico when it became an American Territory during the Mexican-American War. He was killed by Indian rebels during the Taos Revolt.
Taos Plaza has the distinction of being the first place in the United States, by tradition, to fly the United States flag both day and night. In 1861, Southern sympathizers repeatedly tore down the flag flying over the Plaza. Captain Smith Simpson with the help of Kit Carson, Ceran St. Vrain, and others nailed the flag to a tall cottonwood pole and raised it over the Plaza, with the threat that anyone who molested the flag would be shot. To assure it was not torn down, the group went to St. Vrain's nearby store and took turns standing guard over the flag day and night. Since the flag was nailed to the cottonwood, it could not be lowered at dark. When military officials in Santa Fe learned of the incident, they permitted Taos to fly the flag twenty-four hours a day.
Taos Plaza is a tourist destination with many shops displaying Northern New Mexico cultural foods and items.
The last week of July brings the Fiestas de Santa Ana y Santiago, a weekend long celebration where the plaza is filled with music, food, and dance.