This small town
of some 8,000 souls was called Palomas Hot Springs when it was first
settled in 1882. Early on, it became a popular destination for its many
hot mineral springs long thought to provide numerous therapeutic benefits.
Around the turn of the century. a number of bath houses were built to
accommodate the many visitors that made the town a resort area.
name was quickly shortened to just "Hot Springs,” but that would obviously
not be its final moniker.
It all began
in 1950 when Hot Springs was just slowly trudging along as a small resort
town, with its tourist trade being its main industry and in stiff
competition with hundreds of other "Hot Springs” scattered all over the
But the small town
would get a boost
popular Truth or Consequences radio program, on its 10th
anniversary, wanted to find a town that would change its name to Truth
or Consequences. The idea started when Ralph Edwards, the
show’s producer, pulled his staff together and said, "I wish that some
town in the United States liked and respected our show so much that it
would like to change it's name to 'Truth or Consequences.'" When
State Tourist Bureau got wind of the idea, they relayed the news to
the Hot Springs Chamber of Commerce and the news spread like wildfire.
The chamber and the local liked the idea of free advertisement as well
as eliminating the confusion of their city with Hot Springs,
The city soon held an election, the town’s name was changed, and in no
time Ralph Edwards and his entire NBC production crew arrived in the
newly named city, airing the first live, coast-to-coast broadcast
of Truth or Consequences from the city of Truth or Consequences. One city official in 1950 said, "It is the truth that
we have the health-giving waters here. The consequences are that
people get results." The long-run results for the city have been
amazing, as it has received more national
publicity via television and radio than any city of it's size in the
Today, Truth or Consequences, is one of the American Southwest's
best-kept secrets, as this unspoiled town continues to offer its
healing springs, along with its breathtaking sandstone bluffs, a
number of nearby state parks, hiking in the nearby Gila or Cibola
National Forests, rock hounding in the old mining towns of Chloride,
Winston and Hermosa, or attending one of its many regional events.
Truth or Consequences is just off
Interstate-25, midway between El Paso,
or Consequences Chamber of Commerce
P.O. Drawer 31
Truth Or Consequences,
of America, updated October, 2010.