The area is noted for its hot springs, and the first public bath in the area was built at John Cross Ranch over Geronimo Springs in the late 1800s. However, major settlement did not begin until the construction of Elephant Butte Dam and Reservoir in 1912; the dam was completed in 1916. It was a part of the Rio Grande Project, an early large-scale irrigation effort authorized under the Newlands Reclamation Act of 1902. In 1916, the town was incorporated as Hot Springs. It became the Sierra County seat in 1937. By the late 1930s, Hot Springs was filled with 40 different natural-hot-spring spas – one per every 75 residents at the time (though primarily catering to visitors).
The city changed its name to Truth or Consequences as the result of a radio show contest. In March 1950, Ralph Edwards, the host of the popular NBC Radio quiz show Truth or Consequences, announced that he would air the program on its 10th anniversary from the first town that renamed itself after the show; Hot Springs officially changed its name on March 31, 1950, and the program was broadcast from there the following evening. Edwards visited the town during the first weekend of May for the next 50 years. This event became known as Fiesta and eventually included a beauty contest, a parade, and a stage show. The city still celebrates Fiesta each year during the first weekend of May. The parade generally features local dignitaries, last year's Miss Fiesta pageant queen, and the winner of Hatch Chile Queen pageant. Fiesta also features a dance in Ralph Edwards Park.
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch strips
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons white vinegar
- 1 (20-ounce) can pineapple chunks in juice, undrained
- 2 large red bell peppers, cut into thin strips
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 6 scallions, cut into 1-inch pieces
1908 – James Stewart, American actor (d. 1997)
1919 – George Gobel, American comedian (d. 1991)