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Quemado is in Catron County, and in the Southwest New Mexico region. Located south of Gallup between Socorro and the Arizona state line along US Highway 60 near Quemado Lake and the Apache National Forest.

Many years ago up a canyon six miles southeast of Quemado, resided one of the most reliable pioneer Mexican citizens, Dr. Felipe Padilla, who was born May 22, 1866, and who lived for many years at the original site of Quemado, now a ranch, five miles east of the present location of the town. At that time the place was called El Rito Quemado. The town was established in 1870, and Mr. Padilla lived in Catron County 65 years.

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