Cooney, New Mexico

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Cooney, New Mexico
Ghost Town
Cooney is located in New Mexico
Cooney is located in the US
Location within the state of New Mexico
Coordinates: 33°25′22″N 108°48′28″W / 33.42278°N 108.80778°W / 33.42278; -108.80778Coordinates: 33°25′22″N 108°48′28″W / 33.42278°N 108.80778°W / 33.42278; -108.80778[1]
Country United States
State New Mexico
County Catron
Population (2000)
 • Total 0
Time zone Mountain (MST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) MDT (UTC)
Area code(s) 575

Cooney is a ghost town in Catron County, New Mexico, United States, east of Alma. Cooney was once home to gold and silver prospectors in the nearby Mogollon Mountains.


In the 1870s Sergeant James C. Cooney of Fort Bayard found a rich strand of gold in the Gila Mountains near the future site of Mogollon, New Mexico.[2] His find led to the development of several different mines in the area, as well as the settlement of the towns of Mogollon, Alma, and Glenwood.

Several settlers from Cooney were killed, including James Cooney, during an event called the Alma Massacre.[3] The town was washed away in a flood in 1911.[4]

Cooney Cemetery[edit]

Main article: Cooney's Tomb

Cooney Cemetery is a small graveyard found near the Cooney townsite in an isolated area east of Alma, New Mexico. It is located in the southern part of Catron County, approximately 7 miles east of Alma on County Road 7. Cooney Cemetery was created when James Cooney's brother, Captain Mike Cooney, and friends carved a sepulcher out of a rock in the canyon where he was killed and buried him there, sealing the tomb with the silver-bearing ore taken from the mine he discovered. The main part of the cemetery is located behind the above tomb and contains seven burials.[5][6]

Earth First! Monument[edit]

In 1980 Earth First! erected a monument dedicated to Victorio for his successful raid on Cooney and the killing of Cooney and his men. It read, in part,


  1. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Cooney, New Mexico
  2. ^ (nd) Mogollon, New Mexico. Retrieved 6/11/07.
  3. ^ (nd) Alma Massacre. Retrieved 6/11/07.
  4. ^ Brown, N.E. and Boggs, A. (2007) "Tomb of Sergeant James Cooney, Gila National Forest". The Conservation Fund. Retrieved 11/17/10.
  5. ^ Harris, C. (2007) Cooney Cemetery. Cemetery Transcription Library. Retrieved 6/12/07.
  6. ^ (nd) Cooney. USGenWeb. Retrieved 6/13/07.
  7. ^ Wall, D. (1999) Earth First! and the anti-roads movement: Radical environmental movements and comparative social movements. Routledge. p. 43.