The Witchcraft Outbreak at Abiquiu, New Mexico, occurred between 1756 and 1766, five decades after the witchcraft trials at Salem, Massachusetts. The Genizaro (hispanicized Indian) land grant of Abiquiu was the crown jewel of Governor Velez Cachupin's plan to achieve peace for the benefit of the early New Mexican colonists. The governor's strategy involved allowing the Pueblo Indians to retain their religious ceremonies. In opposition to the Governor's plan, Father Juan Jose Toledo complained that the Genizaros had bewitched him. Governor Velez Cachupin convened a meeting of religious leaders who deliberated and forwarded the case to the Inquisition in Mexico City. In a strange twist of fate, the Inquisition eventually charged Father Toledo with heretical practices and removed him.
Malcolm Ebright is director of the Center for Land Grant Studies, Guadalupita, New Mexico. He is also the author of Land Grants and Lawsuits in Northern New Mexico (UNMP). Rick Hendricks is an editor of the six-volume Vargas Project (UNM Press). Glen Strock, southwest folklore illustrator, received a Golden Spur Award from the Western Writers of America for his illustrations in Coyote Tales.||Rick Hendricks is an historical consultant to the Rio Grande Historical Collections at New Mexico State University. He is also the author of The Navajos in 1705 and was an editor of the six-volume Vargas Project (both UNM Press).