What does "New Mexico" mean?
New Mexico was named by the Spanish for lands north of the Rio Grande (the upper region of the Rio Grande was called "Nuevo Mexico" as early as 1561). The name was anglicized and applied to the land ceded to the United States by Mexico after the Mexican American War. All State Name Origins
"Mexico" is an Aztec word meaning "place of Mexitli" (an Aztec god). New Mexico became the 47th state on January 6, 1912.