A northern New Mexico historic site that is considered one of the best preserved examples of a 17th century Spanish colonial mission has been designated as a national historic landmark.
The San Jose de los Jemez Mission Church was added to the list of landmarks Thursday. There are now nearly four dozen national historic landmarks in New Mexico.
State Cultural Affairs Secretary Veronica Gonzales calls the church in Jemez Springs an "outstanding example of American history and culture."
The Jemez site was first listed on the State Register of Cultural Properties in 1969 and was recognized in the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.
Officials say the new designation will enhance the ability to access grant funding for preservation.
The state also plans to work closely with nearby Jemez Pueblo to continue preserving and promoting the site.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.