Does that idea depress you? If you’re at Silva’s Saloon—the nearly century-old Bernalillo bar that’s passed through three generations of one family—you could wind up as happy as a lubricated clam. This week’s feature sifts through layers of the beloved dive bar’s history, patrons and tchotchkes. Oh, and did we mention the place is for sale—lock, stock and barrel?
A historic saloon keeps Bernalillo’s spirits up, even as the Silva family rides off into the sunset
By John Bear
Silva’s Saloon is the subject of town lore. More than a few Bernalillo old timers believe it has an underground tunnel that was used to transport illegal booze. (It doesn't.) That proprietor Felix Silva Sr. kept nine loaded guns stashed throughout the building, just in case. (True.) That a CIA agent used the pay phone to call in to headquarters. (Also true.)