When the Spanish conquistadors arrived in 1548, they found Pueblo settlements populated with the ancestors of Indians, who had occupied the area for over a thousand years. The Spanish returned in 1598 to colonize this land in the name of their king. In 1680, the Indian population, tired of the Spanish way of life, revolted; but the Spanish returned in 1692 and ruled New Mexico under the flag of Spain and then the flag of Mexico (1820) until the coming of the Americans in 1846.
Stephen Watts Kearny and the American Army took it for the United States; meeting little resistance, but New Mexico did not become a state until January 5, 1912, when President Taft signed the bill giving statehood to New Mexico and Arizona. New Mexico became number 47 and Arizona number 48.