Inside the Chapel
The furnishings were purchased with alumni-donated funds and added in 1964.
The Chi Omega sorority donated the carillon bells in 1975, the group's 50th anniversary. In 1989, at the time of the university's centennial, the classes of 1947 and 1949 extended the sound to the east and west campus.
The Retablos and the Retablo Mayor:
Installed in 1964, the chapel's retablo mayor (altar screen) was designed by art professor John Tatschl following sketches by John Gaw Meem. The retablos (pictures drawn on a board) displayed on it were painted by santero John M. Gonzales of Las Vegas, New Mexico, in 1984. All the santos depicted relate in some way to New Mexico. Gonzales also sculpted the bultos (sculptures) in the center of the display. This artwork was made possible by a gift from Bill and Jean Macey.
The chapel has a 15' x 25' American flag, donated by Bill and Jean Macey, which can be lowered over the retablos when desired. There is also a roll-down screen that can cover the reredo.
The pipe organ, from Wicks Organ Company of Highland, Illinois, was added in 1974 as a memorial to Walter Keller, former chairman of the department of music. Professor Wesley T. Selby designed it, trucked the parts from Illinois and assembled them. The only one of its kind in the state, it is a nine-stop baroque organ, with 432 pipes.
In 2009, Nancy Doolittle, along with her siblings and cousin, established the Willia T. Zimmerman Fund to benefit both the chapel and the organ. Willia T. Zimmerman, the donors' grandmother, was the wife of UNM President (1927-1944) James F. Zimmerman. The fund also honors the Zimmermans' daughters, Elizabeth Z. Cottle and Helen Emily Z. Brandenburg.
For questions or more information:
Alumni Relations Office