Today in 1950 a small town in New Mexico gave itself a big new name, by responding to a challenge from a game show.

That small town had been known as Hot Spring, New Mexico, in the southern half of the state.

No surprise with a name like Hot Spring that it had been known for its natural spas.

But they found a way to get even more attention in March of 1950.

That’s when Ralph Edwards, host of the game show Truth of Consequences, announced a pretty big publicity stunt.

Edwards said that if a town was willing to change its name to the name of the show, the radio version of Truth of Consequences would broadcast an episode from that community.

Several towns decided to apply, but the one that was chosen was Hot Spring, where residents apparently voted unanimously to change the name.

That change took effect on March 31, 1950, and the very next day, Ralph Edwards hosted Truth or Consquences from Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.

The show isn’t on the air today, but the name is still around.

And for the record, there is no hyphen in the name Truth or Consequences.

Though sometimes people shorten the name to T or C.

Ralph Edwards, by the way, came back to T or C year after year for the Truth or Consequences Fiesta, which is still held annually.

This year’s Fiesta takes place in May and it’s going to have a parade, a golf tournament, music and more.

Some of the events will even be held at Ralph Edwards Auditorium.

How Did The City Of Truth Or Consequences, New Mexico Get Its Name? (

Truth or Consequences Fiesta (Sierra County New Mexico)

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Photo by einalem via Flickr/Creative Commons