Guide to Life and Literature of the Southwest
J. Frank Dobie

Part 2 out of 4

COX, C. C. "Reminiscences," in Vol. VI of _Southwestern
Historical Quarterly_. One of the best of many pioneer
recollections published by the Texas State Historical

CROCKETT, DAVID. Anything about him.

DICK, EVERETT. _The Sod House Frontier_ (1937) and _Vanguards
of the Frontier_ (1941). Both OP. Life on north-
ern Plains into Rocky Mountains, but applicable to life

DOBIE, J. FRANK. _The Flavor of Texas_, 1936. OP. Considerable
social history.

FENLEY, FLORENCE. _Oldtimers: Their Own Stories_, Uvalde,
Texas, 1939. OP. Faithful reporting of realistic detail.
Southwest Texas, mostly ranch life.

FRANTZ, JOE B. _Gail Borden, Dairyman to a Nation_. University
of Oklahoma Press, Norman, 1951. This biography of a
newspaperman and inventor brings out sides of pioneer life
that emphasis on fighting, farming, and ranching generally

GERSTAECKER, FREDERICK. _Wild Sports in the Far West_, 1860.
Dances are among the sports.

HARRIS, MRS. DILUE. "Reminiscences," edited by Mrs. A. B.
Looscan, in Vols. IV and VII of _Southwestern Historical

HART, JOHN A. _History of Pioneer Days in Texas and Oklahoma_;
no date. Extended and republished under the title of _Pioneer
Days in the Southwest_, 1909. Much on frontier ways of living.

HOFF, CAROL _Johnny Texas_, Wilcox and Follett, Chicago, 1950.
Juvenile, historical fiction. Delightful in both text and

HOGAN, WILLIAM R. _The Texas Republic: A Social and Economic
History_, University of Oklahoma Press, 1946. Long on facts,
short on intellectual activity; that is, on interpretations
from the perspective of time and civilization.

HOLDEN, W. C. _Alkali Trails_, Dallas, 1930. Pioneer life in
West Texas. OP.

HOLLEY, MARY AUSTIN. _Texas . . . in a Series of Letters_,
Baltimore, 1833; reprinted under the title of _Letters of an
American Traveler_, edited by Mattie Austin Hatcher, Dallas,
1933. First good book on Texas to be printed. OP.

_Lamar Papers_. Six volumes of scrappy source material on
Texas history and life, issued by Texas State Library, Austin.

LEWIS, WILLIE NEWBURY. _Between Sun and Sod_, Clarendon,
Texas, 1938. OP. Again, want of perspective.

LUBBOCK, F. R. Six _Decades in Texas_, Austin, 1900.

MCCONNELL, H. H. _Five Years a Cavalryman_, Jacksboro, Texas,
1889. Bully.

McDANIELD, H. F., and TAYLOR, NATHANIEL A. _The Coming Empire,
or 2000 Miles in Texas on Horseback_, New York, 1878;
privately reprinted, 1937. Delightful travel narrative. OP.

MCNEAL, T. A. _When Kansas Was Young_, New York, 1922.
Episodes and characters of Plains country. OP.

OLMSTED, FREDERICK LAW. _A Journey Through Texas_, New York,
1857. Olmsted journeyed in order to see. He saw.

READ, OPIE. _An Arkansas Planter_, 1896. Pleasant fiction.

RICHARDSON, ALBERT D. _Beyond the Mississippi_, Hartford,
1867. What a traveling journalist saw.

RISTER, CARL C. _Southern Plainsmen_, University of Oklahoma
Press, 1938. Though pedestrian in style, good social data.

ROEMER, DR. FERDINAND. _Texas_, translated from the German by
Oswald Mueller, San Antonio, 1935. OP. Roemer, a geologist,
rode through Texas in the forties and made acute observations
on the land, its plants and animals, and the settlers.

SCHMITZ, JOSEPH WILLIAM. _Thus They Lived_, Naylor, San
Antonio, 1935. This would have been a good social history of
Texas had the writer devoted ten more years to the subject.
Unsatisfactory bibliography.

SHIPMAN, DANIEL. _Frontier Life, 58 Years in Texas_, n.p.,
1879. One of the pioneer reminiscences that should be

SMITH, HENRY. "Reminiscences," in _Southwestern Historical
Quarterly_, Vol. XIV. Telling details.

SMITHWICK, NOAH. _The Evolution of a State_, Austin, 1900.
Reprinted by Steck, Austin, 1935. Best of all books dealing
with life in early Texas. Bully reading.

_Southwestern Historical Quarterly_, published since 1897 by
Texas State Historical Association, Austin. A depository of
all kinds of history; the first twenty-five or thirty volumes
are the more interesting.

SWEET, ALEXANDER E., and KNOX, J. ARMOY. _On a Mexican Mustang
Through Texas_, Hartford, 1883. Humorous satire, often
penetrating and ruddy with actuality.

WALLIS, JONNIE LOCKHART. _Sixty Years on the Brazos: The Life
and Letters of Dr. John Washington Lockhart_, privately
printed, Los Angeles, 1930. In notebook style, but as rare in
essence as it is among dealers in out-of-print books.

WAUGH, JULIA NOTT. _Castroville and Henry Castro_, San
Antonio, 1934. OP. Best-written monograph dealing with any
aspect of Texas history that I have read.

WYNN, AFTON. "Pioneer Folk Ways," in _Straight Texas_, Texas
Folklore Society Publication XIII, 1937.


Fighting Texians

THE TEXAS PEOPLE belong to a fighting tradition that the
majority of them are proud of. The footholds that the
Spaniards and Mexicans held in Texas were maintained by virtue
of fighting, irrespective of missionary baptizing. The purpose
of the Anglo-American colonizer Stephen F. Austin to "redeem
Texas from the wilderness" was accomplished only by fighting.
The Texans bought their liberty with blood and maintained it
for nine years as a republic with blood. It was fighting men
who pushed back the frontiers and blazed trails.

The fighting tradition is now giving way to the oil tradition.
The Texas myth as imagined by non-Texans is coming to embody
oil millionaires in airplanes instead of horsemen with six-
shooters and rifles. See Edna Ferber's Giant (1952 novel).
Nevertheless, many Texans who never rode a horse over three
miles at a stretch wear cowboy boots, and a lot of Texans are
under the delusion that bullets and atomic bombs can settle
complexities that demand informed intelligence and the power
to think.

As I have pointed out in _The Flavor of Texas_, the chronicles
of men who fought the Mexicans and were prisoners to them
comprise a unique unit in the personal narratives and annals
of America.

Many of the books listed under the headings of "Texas
Rangers," "How the Early Settlers Lived," and "Range Life"
specify the fighting tradition.

BEAN, PETER ELLIS. _Memoir_, published first in Vol. I of
Yoakum's _History of Texas_; in 1930 printed as a small book
by the Book Club of Texas, Dallas, now OP. A fascinating

BECHDOLT, FREDERICK R. _Tales of the Old Timers_, New York,
1924. Forceful retelling of the story of the Mier Expedition
and of other activities of the "fighting Texans." OP.

CHABOT, FREDERICK C. _The Perote Prisoners_, San Antonio,
1934. Annotated diaries of Texas prisoners in Mexico. OP.

DOBIE, J. FRANK. _The Flavor of Texas_, Dallas, 1936. OP.
Chapters on Bean, Green, Duval, Kendall, and other
representers of the fighting Texans.

DUVAL, JOHN C. _Adventures of Bigfoot Wallace_, 1870; _Early
Times in Texas_, 1892. Both books are kept in print by Steck,
Austin. For biography and critical estimate, see _John C.
Duval: First Texas Man of Letters_, by J. Frank Dobie
(illustrated by Tom Lea), Dallas, 1939. OP. _Early Times in
Texas_, called "the _Robinson Crusoe_ of Texas," is Duval's
story of the Goliad Massacre and of his escape from it. Duval
served as a Texas Ranger with Bigfoot Wallace, who was in the
Mier Expedition. His narrative of Bigfoot's _Adventures_ is
the rollickiest and the most flavorsome that any American
frontiersman has yet inspired. The tiresome thumping on the
hero theme present in many biographies of frontiersmen is
entirely absent. Stanley Vestal wrote _Bigfoot Wallace_ also,
Boston, 1942. OP.

ERATH, MAJOR GEORGE G. _Memoirs_, Texas State Historical
Association, Austin, 1923. Erath understood his fellow
Texians. OP.

GILLETT, JAMES B. _Six Years with the Texas Rangers_, 1921.

GREEN, THOMAS JEFFERSON. _Journal of the Texan Expedition
against Mier_, 1845; reprinted by Steck, Austin, 1936. Green
was one of the leaders of the Mier Expedition. He lived in
wrath and wrote with fire. For information on Green see
_Recollections and Reflections_ by his son, Wharton J. Green,
1906. OP.

HOUSTON, SAM. _The Raven_, by Marquis James, 1929, is
not the only biography of the Texan general, but it is the
best, and embodies most of what has been written on Houston
excepting the multivolumed _Houston Papers_ issued by the
University of Texas Press, Austin, under the editorship of E.
C. Barker. Houston was an original character even after he
became a respectable Baptist.

KENDALL, GEORGE W. _Narrative of the Texan Santa Fe
Expedition_, 1844; reprinted by Steck, Austin, 1936. Two
volumes. Kendall, a New Orleans journalist in search of copy,
joined the Santa Fe Expedition sent by the Republic of Texas
to annex New Mexico. Lost on the Staked Plains and then
marched afoot as a prisoner to Mexico City, he found plenty of
copy and wrote a narrative that if it were not so
journalistically verbose might rank alongside Dana's _Two
Years Before the Mast_. Fayette Copeland's _Kendall of the
Picayune_, 1943 but OP, is a biography. An interesting
parallel to Kendall's _Narrative is Letters and Notes on the
Texan Santa Fe Expedition, 1841-1842_, by Thomas Falconer,
with Notes and Introduction by F. W. Hodge, New York, 1930.
OP. The route of the expedition is logged and otherwise
illuminated in _The Texan Santa Fe Trail_, by H. Bailey
Carroll, Panhandle-Plains Historical Society, Canyon, Texas,

LEACH, JOSEPH. _The Typical Texan: Biography of an American
Myth_, Southern Methodist University Press, Dallas, 1952. At
the time Texas was emerging, the three main types of Americans
were Yankees, southern aristocrats, Kentucky westerners
embodied by Daniel Boone. Texas took over the Kentucky
tradition. It was enlarged by Crockett, who stayed in Texas
only long enough to get killed, Sam Houston, and Bigfoot
Wallace. Novels, plays, stories, travel books, and the Texans
themselves have kept the tradition going. This is the main
thesis of the book. Mr. Leach fails to note that the best
books concerning Texas have done little to keep the typical
Texan alive and that a great part of the present Texas Brags
spirit is as absurdly unrealistic as Mussolini's splurge at
making twentieth-century Italians imagine themselves a
{illust. caption =
John W. Thomason, in his _Lone Star Preacher_ (1941)}

reincarnation of Caesar's Roman legions. Mr. Leach dissects
the myth and then swallows it.

LINN, JOHN J. _Reminiscences of Fifty Years in Texas_, 1883;
reprinted by Steck, Austin, 1936. Mixture of personal
narrative and historical notes, written with energy and

MAVERICK, MARY A. _Memoirs_, 1921. OP. Mrs. Maverick's
husband, Sam Maverick, was among the citizens of San Antonio
haled off to Mexico as prisoners in 1842.

MORRELL, Z. N. _Fruits and Flowers in the Wilderness_, 1872.
OP. Morrell, a circuit-riding Baptist preacher, fought the
Indians and the Mexicans. See other books of this kind listed
under "Circuit Riders and Missionaries."

PERRY, GEORGE SESSIONS. Texas, A _World in Itself_, McGraw-
Hill, New York, 1942. Especially good chapter on the Alamo.

SMYTHE, H. _Historical Sketch of Parker County, Texas_, 1877.
One of various good county histories of Texas replete with
fighting. For bibliography of this extensive class of
literature consult _Texas County Histories_, by H. Bailey
Carroll, Texas State Historical Association, Austin, 1943. OP.

SONNICHSEN, C. L. _I'll Die Before I'll Run: The Story of the
Great Feuds of Texas_--and of some not great. Harper, New
York, 1951.

SOWELL, A. J. _Rangers and Pioneers of Texas_, 1884; _Life of
Bigfoot Wallace_, 1899; _Early Settlers and Indian Fighters of
Southwest Texas_, 1900. All OP; all meaty with the character
of ready-to-fight but peace-seeking Texas pioneers. Sowell
will some day be recognized as an extraordinary chronicler.

STAPP, WILLIAM P. _The Prisoners of Perote_, 1845; reprinted
by Steck, Austin, 1936. Journal of one of the Mier men who
drew a white bean.

THOMASON, JOHN W. _Lone Star Preacher_, Scribner's, New York,
1941. The cream, the essence, the spirit, and the body of the
fighting tradition of Texas. Historical novel of Civil War.

WEBB, WALTER PRESCOTT. _The Texas Rangers_, Houghton Mifflin,
Boston, 1935. See under "Texas Rangers."

WILBARGER, J. W. _Indian Depredations in Texas_, 1889;
reprinted by Steck, Austin, 1936. Narratives that have for
generations been a household heritage among Texas families who
fought for their land.


Texas Rangers

THE TEXAS RANGERS were never more than a handful in number,
but they were picked men who knew how to ride, shoot, and tell
the truth. On the Mexican border and on the Indian frontier, a
few rangers time and again proved themselves more effective
than battalions of soldiers.

Oh, pray for the ranger, you kind-hearted stranger,
He has roamed over the prairies for many a year;
He has kept the Comanches from off your ranches,
And chased them far over the Texas frontier.

BANTA, WILLIAM. _Twenty-seven Years on the Texas Frontier_,
1893; reprinted, 1933. OP.

GAY, BEATRICE GRADY. _Into the Setting Sun_, Santa Anna,
Texas, 1936. Coleman County scenes and characters, dominated
by ranger character. OP.

GILLETT, JAMES B. _Six Years with the Texas Rangers_, printed
for the author at Austin, Texas, 1921. He paid the printer
cash for either one or two thousand copies, as he told me, and
sold them personally. Edited by Milo M. Quaife, the book was
published by Yale University Press in 1925. This edition was
reprinted, 1943, by the Lakeside Press, Chicago, in its
"Lakeside Classics" series, which are given away by the
publishers at Christmas annually and are not for sale--except
through second-hand dealers. Meantime, in 1927, the narrative
had appeared under title of _The Texas Ranger_, "in
collaboration with Howard R. Driggs," a professional
neutralizer for school readers of any writing not
standardized, published by World Book Co., Yonkers-on-Hudson,
York. All editions OP. I regard Gillett as the strongest and
straightest of all ranger narrators. He combined in his nature
wild restlessness and loyal gentleness. He wrote in sunlight.

GREER, JAMES K. _Buck Barry_, Dallas, 1932. OP. _Colonel Jack
Hays, Texas Frontier Leader and California Builder_, Dutton,
New York, 1952. Hays achieved more vividness in reputation
than narratives about him have attained to.

JENNINGS, N. A. _The Texas Ranger_, New York, 1899; reprinted
1930, with foreword by J. Frank Dobie. OP. Good narrative.

MALTBY, W. JEFF. _Captain Jeff_, Colorado, Texas, 1906.
Amorphous. OP.

MARTIN, JACK. _Border Boss_, San Antonio, 1942. Mediocre
biography of Captain John R. Hughes. OP.

PAINE, ALBERT BIGELOW. _Captain Bill McDonald_, New York,
1909. Paine did not do so well by "Captain Bill" as he did in
his rich biography of Mark Twain. OP.

PIKE, JAMES. _Scout and Ranger_, 1865, reprinted 1932 by
Princeton University Press. Pike drew a long bow; interesting.

RAYMOND, DORA NEILL. _Captain Lee Hall of Texas_, Norman,
Oklahoma, 1940. OP.

REID, SAMUEL C. _Scouting Expeditions of the Texas Rangers_,
1859; reprinted by Steck, Austin, 1936. Texas Rangers in
Mexican War.

ROBERTS, DAN W. _Rangers and Soveretgnty_, 1914. OP. Roberts
was better as ranger than as writer.

ROBERTS, MRS. D. W. (wife of Captain Dan W. Roberts). A
_Woman's Reminiscences of Six Years in Camp with The Texas
Rangers_, Austin, 1928. OP. Mrs. Roberts was a sensible and
charming woman with a seeing eye.

SOWELL, A. J. _Rangers and Pioneers of Texas_, San Antonio,
1884. A graphic book down to bedrock. OP.

WEBB, WALTER PRESCOTT. _The Texas Rangers_, Houghton Mifflin,
Boston, 1935. The beginning, middle, and end of the subject.


Women Pioneers

ONE REASON for the ebullience of life and rollicky
carelessness on the frontiers of the West was the lack--
temporary--of women. The men, mostly young, had given no
hostages to fortune. They were generally as free from family
cares as the buccaneers. This was especially true of the first
ranches on the Great Plains, of cattle trails, of mining
camps, logging camps, and of trapping expeditions. It was not
true of the colonial days in Texas, of ranch life in the
southern part of Texas, of homesteading all over the West, of
emigrant trails to California and Oregon, of backwoods life.

Various items listed under "How the Early Settlers Lived"
contain material on pioneer women.

Goes West_, New York, 1942. Montana in the eighties. OP.

BAKER, D. W. C. A _Texas Scrapbook_, 1875; reprinted, 1936, by
Steck, Austin.

BROTHERS, MARY HUDSON. A _Pecos Pioneer_, 1943. OP. The best
part of this book is not about the writer's brother, who
cowboyed with Chisum's Jinglebob outfit and ran into Billy the
Kid, but is Mary Hudson's own life. Only Ross Santee has
equaled her in description of drought and rain. The last
chapters reveal a girl's inner life, amid outward experiences,
as no other woman's chronicle of ranch ways--sheep ranch here.

CALL, HUGHIE. _Golden Fleece_, Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 1942.
Hughie Call became wife of a Montana sheepman early in this
century. OP.

CLEAVELAND, AGNES MORLEY. _No Life for a Lady_, Houghton
Mifflin, Boston, 1941. Bright, witty, penetrating; anecdotal.
Best account of frontier life from woman's point of view yet
published. New Mexico is the setting, toward turn of the
century. People who wished Mrs. Cleaveland would write another
book were disappointed when her _Satan's Paradise_ appeared in

ELLIS, ANNE. _The Life of An Ordinary Woman_, 1929, and _Plain
Anne Ellis_, 1931, both OP. Colorado country and town. Books
of disillusioned observations, wit, and wisdom by a frank

FAUNCE, HILDA. _Desert Wife_, 1934. OP. Desert loneliness at a
Navajo trading post.

HARRIS, MRS. DILUE. Reminiscences, in _Southwestern Historical
Quarterly_, Vols. IV and VII.

KLEBERG, ROSA. "Early Experiences in Texas," in _Quarterly of
the Texas State Historical Association_ (initial title for
_Southwestern Historical Quarterly_), Vols. I and II.

MAGOFFIN, SUSAN SHELBY. _Down the Santa Fe Trail_, 1926. OP.
She was juicy and a bride, and all life was bright to her.

MATTHEWS, SALLIE REYNOLDS. _Interwoven_, Houston, 1936. Ranch
life in the Texas frontier as a refined and intelligent woman
saw it. OP.

MAVERICK, MARY A. _Memoirs_, San Antonio, 1921. OP. Essential.

PICKRELL, ANNIE DOOM. _Pioneer Women in Texas_, Austin, 1929.
Too much lady business but valuable. OP.

POE, SOPHIE A. _Buckboard Days_, edited by Eugene Cunningham,
Caldwell, Idaho, 1936. Mrs. Poe was there--New Mexico.

RAK, MARY KIDDER. _A Cowman's Wife_, Houghton Mifflin, Boston,
1934. The external experiences of an ex-teacher on a small
Arizona ranch.

RHODES, MAY D. _The Hired Man on Horseback_, 1938. Biography
of Eugene Manlove Rhodes, but also warm-natured autobiography
of the woman who ranched with "Gene" in New Mexico. OP.

RICHARDS, CLARICE E. _A Tenderfoot Bride_, Garden City, N. Y.,
1920. OP. Charming.

STEWART, ELINOR P. _Letters of a Woman Homesteader_, Boston,
1914. OP.

WHITE, OWEN P. _A Frontier Mother_, New York, 1929. OP.
Overdone, as White overdid every subject he touched.

WILBARGER, J. W. _Indian Depredations in Texas_, 1889;
reprinted by Steck, Austin, 1936. A glimpse into the lives led
by families that gave many women to savages--for death or for
Cynthia Ann Parker captivity.

WYNN, AFTON. "Pioneer Folk Ways," in _Straight Texas_, Texas
Folklore Society Publication XIII, 1937. Excellent.


Circuit Riders and Missionaries

NOTWITHSTANDING both the tradition and the facts of
hardshooting, hard-riding cowboys, of bad men, of border
lawlessness, of inhabitants who had left some other place
under a cloud, of frontier towns "west of God," hard layouts
and conscienceless "courthouse crowds"--notwithstanding all
this, the Southwest has been and is religious-minded. This is
not to say that it is spiritual-natured. It belongs to H. L.
Mencken's "Bible Belt." "Pass-the-Biscuits" Pappy O'Daniel got
to be governor of Texas and then U.S. senator by advertising
his piety. A politician as "ignorant as a Mexican hog" on
foreign affairs and the complexities of political economy can
run in favor of what he and the voters call religion and leave
an informed man of intellect and sincerity in the shade. The
biggest campmeeting in the Southwest, the Bloys Campmeeting
near Fort Davis, Texas, is in the midst of an enormous range
country away from all factories and farmers.

Since about 1933 the United States Indian Service has not only
allowed but rather encouraged the Indians to revert to their
own religious ceremonies. They have always been religious. The
Spanish colonists of the Southwest, as elsewhere, were
zealously Catholic, and their descendants have generally
remained Catholic. The first English-speaking settlers of the
region--the colonists led by Stephen F. Austin to Texas--were
overwhelmingly Protestant, though in order to establish
Mexican citizenship and get titles to homestead land they had,
technically, to declare themselves Catholics. One of the
causes of the Texas Revolution as set forth by the Texans in
their Declaration of Independence was the Mexican govern-
ment's denial of "the right of worshipping the Almighty
according to the dictates of our own conscience." A history of
southwestern society that left out the Bible would be as badly
gapped as one leaving out the horse or the six-shooter.

See chapter entitled "On the Lord's Side" in Dobie's _The
Flavor of Texas_. Most of the books listed under "How the
Early Settlers Lived" contain information on religion and
preachers. Church histories are about as numerous as state
histories. Virtually all county histories take into account
church development. The books listed below are strong on
personal experiences.

ASBURY, FRANCIS. Three or more lives have been written of this
representative pioneer bishop.

BOLTON, HERBERT E. _The Padre on Horseback_, 1932. Life of the
Jesuit missionary Kino. OP.

BROWNLOW, W. G. _Portrait and Biography of Parson Brownlow,
the Tennessee Patriot_, 1862. Brownlow was a very
representative figure. Under the title of _William G Brownlow,
Fighting Parson of the Southern Highland_, E. M Coulter has
brought out a thorough life of him, published by University of
North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill, 1937.

BURLESON, RUFUS C. _Life and Writings_, 1901. OP. The
autobiographical part of this amorphously arranged volume is a
social document of the first rank.

CARTWRIGHT, PETER. _Autobiography_, 1857. Out of Kentucky,
into Indiana and then into Illinois, where he ran against
Lincoln for Congress, Cartwright rode with saddlebags and
Bible. Sandburg characterizes him as "an enemy of whisky,
gambling, jewelry, fine clothes, and higher learning." He
seems to me more unlovely in his intolerance and sectarianism
than most circuit riders of the Southwest, but as a militant,
rough-and-ready "soldier of the Lord" he represented
southwestern frontiers as well as his own.

CRANFILL, J. B. _Chronicle, A Story of Life in Texas_, 1916.
Cranfill was a lot of things besides a Baptist preacher--trail
driver, fiddler, publisher, always an observer. OP.

DEVILBISS, JOHN WESLEY. _Reminiscences and Events_ (compiled
by H. A. Graves), 1886. The very essence of pioneering,

DOMENECH, ABBE. _Missionary Adventures in Texas and Mexico_
(translated from the French), London, 1858. OP. The Abbe
always had eyes open for wonders. He saw them. Delicious

EVANS, WILL G. _Border Skylines_, published in Dallas, 1940,
for Bloys Campmeeting Association, Fort Davis, Texas.
Chronicles of the men and women--cow people--and cow country
responsible for the best known campmeeting, held annually,
Texas has ever had. OP.

GRAVIS, PETER W. _25 Years on the Outside Row of the Northwest
Texas Annual Conference_, Comanche, Texas, 1892. Another one
of those small personal records, privately printed but full of
juice. OP.

LIDE, ANNA A. _Robert Alexander and the Early Methodist Church
in Texas_, La Grange, Texas, 1935. OP.

MORRELL, Z. N. _Fruits and Flowers in the Wilderness_, 1872.
Though reprinted three times, last in 1886, long OP. In many
ways the best circuit rider's chronicle of the Southwest that
has been published. Morrell fought Indians and Mexicans in
Texas and was rich in other experiences.

MORRIS, T. A. _Miscellany_, 1 8 S 4. The "Notes of Travel"--
particularly to Texas in 1841--are what makes this book

PARISOT, P. F. _Reminiscences of a Texas Missionary_, 1899.
Mostly the Texas-Mexican border.

POTTER, ANDREW JACKSON, commonly called the Fighting Parson."
_Life_ of him by H. A. Graves, 1890, not nearly so good as
Potter was himself.

THOMASON, JOHN W. _Lone Star Preacher_, Scribner's, New York,
1941. Fiction, true to humanity. The moving story of a Texas
chaplain who carried a Bible in one hand and a captain's sword
in the other through the Civil War.


Lawyers, Politicians, J. P.'s

STEPHEN F. AUSTIN wanted to exclude lawyers, along with roving
frontiersmen, from his colonies in Texas, and hoped thus to
promote a utopian society. The lawyers got in, however. Their
wit, the anecdotes of which they were both subject and author,
and the political stories they made traditional from the
stump, have not been adequately set down. As criminal lawyers
they stood as high in society as corporation lawyers stand now
and were a good deal more popular, though less wealthy. The
code of independence that fostered personal violence and
justified killings--in contradistinction to murders--and that
ran to excess in outlaws naturally fostered the criminal
lawyer. His type is now virtually obsolete.

Keen observers, richly stored in experience and delightful in
talk, as many lawyers of the Southwest have been and are, very
few of them have written on other than legal subjects. James
D. Lynch's _The Bench and the Bar of Texas_ (1885) is confined
to the eminence of "eminent jurists" and to the mastery of
"masters of jurisprudence." What we want is the flavor of life
as represented by such characters as witty Three-Legged Willie
(Judge R. M. Williamson) and mysterious Jonas Harrison. It
takes a self-lover to write good autobiography. Lawyers are
certainly as good at self-loving as preachers, but we have far
better autobiographic records of circuit riders than of early-
day lawyers.

Like them, the pioneer justice of peace resides more in folk
anecdotes than in chroniclings. Horace Bell's expansive _On
the Old West Coast_ so represents him. A continent away, David
Crockett, in his _Autobiography_, confessed, "I was afraid
some one would ask me what the judiciary was. If I
knowed I wish I may be shot." Before this, however, Crockett
had been a J. P. "I gave my decisions on the principles of
common justice and honesty between man and man, and relied on
natural born sense, and not on law learning to guide me; for I
had never read a page in a law book in all my life."

COOMBES, CHARLES E. _The Prairie Dog Lawyer_, Dallas, 1945.
OP. Experiences and anecdotes by a lawyer better read in
rough-and-ready humanity than in law. The prairie dogs have
all been poisoned out from the West Texas country over which
he ranged from court to court.

HAWKINS, WALACE. _The Case of John C. Watrous, United States
Judge for Texas: A Political Story of High Crimes and
Misdemeanors_, Southern Methodist University Press, Dallas,
1950. More technical than social.

KITTRELL, NORMAN G. _Governors Who Have Been and Other Public
Men of Texas_, Houston, 1921. OP. Best collection of lawyer
anecdotes of the Southwest.

ROBINSON, DUNCAN W. _Judge Robert McAlpin Williamson, Texas'
Three-Legged Willie_, Texas State Historical Association,
Austin, 1948. This was the Republic of Texas judge who laid a
Colt revolver across a Bowie knife and said: "Here is the
constitution that overrides the law."

SONNICHSEN, C. L. _Roy Bean, Law West of the Pecos_,
Macmillan, New York, 1943. Roy Bean (1830-1903), justice of
peace at Langtry, Texas, advertised himself as "Law West of
the Pecos." He was more picaresque than picturesque; folk
imagination gave him notoriety. The Texas State Highway
Department maintains for popular edification the beer joint
wherein he held court. Three books have been written about
him, besides scores of newspaper and magazine articles. The
only biography of validity is Sonnichsen's.

SLOAN, RICHARD E. _Memories of an Arizona Judge_, Stanford,
California, 1932. Full of humanity. OP.

SMITH, E. F. _A Saga of Texas Law: A Factual Story of Texas
Law, Lawyers, Judges and Famous Lawsuits_, Naylor, San
Antonio, 1940. Interesting.


Pioneer Doctors

BEFORE the family doctors came, frontiersmen sawed off legs
with handsaws, tied up arteries with horsetail hair,
cauterized them with branding irons. Before homemade surgery
with steel tools was practiced, Mexican _curanderas_ (herb
women) supplied _remedios_, and they still know the medicinal
properties of every weed and bush. Herb stores in San Antonio,
Brownsville, and El Paso do a thriving business. Behind the
_curanderas_ were the medicine men of the tribes. Not all
their lore was superstition, as any one who reads the
delectable autobiography of Gideon Lincecum, published by the
Mississippi Historical Society in 1904, will agree. Lincecum,
learned in botany, a sharply-edged individual who later moved
to Texas, went out to live with a Choctaw medicine man and
wrote down all his lore about the virtues of native plants.
The treatise has never been printed.

The extraordinary life of Lincecum has, however, been
interestingly delineated in Samuel Wood Geiser's _Naturalists
of the Frontier_, Southern Methodist University Press, 1937,
1948, and in Pat Ireland Nixon's _The Medical Story of Early
Texas_, listed below. No historical novelist could ask for a
richer theme than Gideon Lincecum or Edmund Montgomery, the
subject of I. K. Stephens' biography listed below.

BUSH, I. J. _Gringo Doctor_, Caldwell, Idaho, 1939. OP. Dr.
Bush represented frontier medicine and surgery on both
sides of the Rio Grande. Living at El Paso, he was for a time
with the Maderistas in the revolution against Diaz.

COE, URLING C. _Frontier Doctor_, New York, 1939. OP.
Not of the Southwest but representing other frontier doctors.
Lusty autobiography full of characters and anecdotes.

DODSON, RUTH. "Don Pedrito Jaramillo: The Curandero of Los
Olmos," in _The Healer of Los Olmos and Other Mexican Lore_
(Publication of the Texas Folklore Society XXIV), edited by
Wilson M. Hudson, Southern Methodist University Press, Dallas,
1951. Don Pedrito was no more of a fraud than many an
accredited psychiatrist, and he was the opposite of offensive.

NIXON, PAT IRELAND. _A Century of Medicine in San Antonio_,
published by the author, San Antonio, 1936. Rich in
information, diverting in anecdote, and tonic in philosophy.
Bibliography. _The Medical Story of Early Texas, 1528-1835_
[San Antonio], 1946. Lightness of life with scholarly
thoroughness; many character sketches.

RED, MRS. GEORGE P. _The Medicine Man in Texas_, Houston,
1930. Biographical. OP.

STEPHENS, I. K. _The Hermit Philosother of Liendo_, Southern
Methodist University Press, Dallas, 1951. Well-conceived and
well-written biography of Edmund Montgomery--illegitimate son
of a Scottish lord, husband of the sculptress Elisabet Ney--
who, after being educated in Germany and becoming a member of
the Royal College of Physicians of London, came to Texas with
his wife and sons and settled on Liendo Plantation, near
Hempstead, once known as Sixshooter Junction. Here, in utter
isolation from people of cultivated minds, he conducted
scientific experiments in his inadequate laboratory and
thought out a philosophy said to be half a century ahead of
his time. He died in 1911. His life was the drama of an
elevated soul of complexities, far more tragic than any life
associated with the lurid "killings" around him.

WOODHULL, FROST. "Ranch Remedios," in _Man, Bird, and Beast_,
Texas Folklore Society Publication VIII, 1930. The richest and
most readable collection of pioneer remedies yet published.


Mountain Men

AS USED HERE, the term "Mountain Men" applies to those
trappers and traders who went into the Rocky Mountains
before emigrants had even sought a pass through them to
the west or cattle had beat out a trail on the plains east of
them. Beaver fur was the lodestar for the Mountain Men.
Their span of activity was brief, their number insignificant.
Yet hardly any other distinct class of men, irrespective of
number or permanence, has called forth so many excellent
books as the Mountain Men. The books are not nearly so
numerous as those connected with range life, but when one
considers the writings of Stanley Vestal, Sabin, Ruxton, Fer
gusson, Chittenden, Favour, Garrard, Inman, Irving, Reid,
and White in this Seld, one doubts whether any other form
of American life at all has been so well covered in ballad,
fiction, biography, history.

See James Hobbs, James O. Pattie, and Reuben Gold
Thwaites under "Surge of Life in the West," also "Santa Fe
and the Santa Fe Trail."

ALTER, J. CECIL. _James Bridger_, Salt Lake City, 1925. A
hogshead of life. Bibliography. OP. Republished by Long's
College Book Co., Columbus, Ohio.

BONNER, T. D. _The Life and Adventures of James P. Beckwourth,
1856_; reprinted in 1931, with an illuminating introduction by
Bernard DeVoto. OP. Beckwourth was the champion of all western

BREWERTON, G. D. _Overland with Kit Carson_, New York, 1930.
Good narrative. OP.

CHITTENDEN, _H. M. The American Fur Trade of the_
_Far West_, New York, 1902. OP. Basic work. Bibliography.

CLELAND, ROBERT GLASS. _This Reckless Breed of Men: The
Trappers and Fur Traders of the Southwest_, Knopf, New York,
1950. Fresh emphasis on the California-Arizona-New Mexico
region by a knowing scholar. Economical in style without loss
of either humanity or history. Bibliography.

CONRAD, HOWARD L. _Uncle Dick Wootton_, 1890. Primary source.

COYNER, D. H. _The Lost Trappers_, 1847.

DAVIDSON, L. J., and BOSTWICK, P. _The Literature of the Rocky
Mountain West 1803-1903_, Caxton, Caldwell, Idaho, 1939.
Davidson and Forrester Blake, editors. _Rocky Mountain Tales_,
University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, 1947.

DEVOTO, BERNARD. _Across the Wide Missouri_, Houghton Mifflin,
Boston, 1947. Superbly illustrated by reproductions of Alfred
Jacob Miller. DeVoto has amplitude and is a master of his
subject as well as of the craft of writing.

FAVOUR, ALPHEUS H. _Old Bill Williams, Mountain Man_,
University of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill, 1936. Flavor
and facts both. Full bibliography.

FERGUSSON, HARVEY. _Rio Grande_, 1933, republished by Tudor,
New York. The drama and evolution of human life in New Mexico,
written out of knowledge and with power. _Wolf Song_, New
York, 1927. OP. Graphic historical novel of Mountain Men. It
sings with life.

GARRARD, LEWIS H. _Wah-toyah and the Taos Trail_, 1850. One of
the basic works.

GRANT, BLANCHE C. _When Old Trails Were New--The Story of
Taos_, New York, 1934. OP. Taos was rendezvous town for the
free trappers.

GUTHRIE, A. B., JR. _The Big Sky_, Sloane, New York, 1947 (now
published by Houghton Mifflin, Boston). "An unusually original
novel, superb as historical fiction."--Bernard DeVoto. I still
prefer Harvey Fergusson's _Wolf Song_.

HAMILTON, W. T. _My Sixty Years on the Plains_, New York,
1905. Now published by Long's College Book Co., Columbus,

INMAN, HENRY. _The Old Santa Fe Trail_, 1897.

IRVING, WASHINGTON. _The Adventures of Captain Bonneville_ and
_Astoria_. The latter book was founded on Robert Stuart's
Narratives. In 1935 these were prepared for the press, with
much illuminative material, by Philip Ashton Rollins and
issued under the title of _The Discovery of the Oregon Trail_.

LARPENTEUR, CHARLES. _Forty Years a Fur Trader on the Upper
Missouri_, edited by Elliott Coues, New York, 1898. As Milo
Milton Quaife shows in an edition of the narrative issued by
the Lakeside Press, Chicago, 1933, the indefatigable Coues
just about rewrote the old fur trader's narrative. It is
immediate and vigorous.

LAUT, A. C. _The Story of the Trapper_, New York, 1902. A
popular survey, emphasizing types and characters.

LEONARD, ZENAS. _Narrative of the Adventures of Zenas
Leonard_, Clearfield, Pa., 1839. In 1833 the Leonard trappers
reached San Francisco Bay, boarded a Boston ship anchored near
shore, and for the first time in two years varied their meat
diet by eating bread and drinking "Coneac." One of the
trappers had a gun named Knock-him-stiff. Such earthy details
abound in this narrative of adventures in a brand new world.

LOCKWOOD, FRANK C. _Arizona Characters_, Los Angeles, 1928.
Very readable biographic sketches. OP.

MILLER, ALFRED JACOB. _The West of Alfred Jacob Miller_, with
an account of the artist by Marvin C. Ross, University of
Oklahoma Press, Norman, 1950. Although Miller painted the West
during 1837-38, only now is he being discovered by the public.
This is mainly a picture book, in the top rank.

PATTIE, JAMES OHIO. _The Personal Narrative of James
O. Pattie of Kentucky_, Cincinnati, 1831. Pattie and his small
party went west in 1824. For grizzlies, thirst, and other
features of primitive adventure the narrative is primary.

REID, MAYNE. _The Scalp Hunters_. An antiquated novel, but it
has some deep-dyed pictures of Mountain Men.

ROSS, ALEXANDER. _Adventures of the First Settlers on the
Oregon or Columbia River_ (1849) and _The Fur Hunters of the
Far West_ (1855). The trappers of the Southwest can no more be
divorced from the trappers of the Hudson's Bay Company than
can Texas cowboys from those of Montana.

RUSSELL, OSBORNE. _Journal of a Trapper_, Boise, Idaho, 1921.
In the winter of 1839, at Fort Hall on Snake River, Russell
and three other trappers "had some few books to read, such as
Byron, Shakespeare and Scott's works, the Bible and Clark's
Commentary on it, and some small works on geology, chemistry
and philosophy." Russell was wont to speculate on Life and
Nature. In perspective he approaches Ruxton.

RUXTON, GEORGE F. _Life in the Far West_, 1848; reprinted by
the University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, 1951, edited by
LeRoy R. Hafen. No other contemporary of the Mountain Men has
been so much quoted as Ruxton. He remains supremely readable.

SABIN, EDWIN L. _Kit Carson Days_, 1914. A work long standard,
rich on rendezvous, bears, and many other associated subjects.
Bibliography. Republished in rewritten form, 1935. OP.

VESTAL, STANLEY (pseudonym for Walter S. Campbell). _Kit
Carson_, 1928. As a clean-running biographic narrative, it is
not likely to be superseded. _Mountain Men_, 1937, OP; _The
Old Santa Fe Trail_, 1939. Vestal's "Fandango," a tale of the
Mountain Men in Taos, is among the most spirited ballads
America has produced. It and a few other Mountain Men ballads
are contained in the slight collection, _Fandango_, 1927.
Houghton Mifflin, Boston, published the aforementioned titles.
_James Bridger, Mountain Man_, Morrow, New York, 1946, is
smoother than J. Cecil Alter's biography but not so savory.
_Joe Meek, the Merry Mountain Man_, Caxton, Caldwell, Idaho,

WHITE, STEWART EDWARD. _The Long Rifle_, 1932, and _Ranchero_,
1933, Doubleday, Doran, Garden City, N. Y. Historical fiction.


Santa Fe and the Santa Fe Trail

THERE WAS Independence on the Missouri River, then eight
hundred miles of twisting trail across hills, plains, and
mountains, all uninhabited save by a few wandering Indians and
uncountable buffaloes. Then there was Santa Fe. On west of it
lay nearly a thousand miles of wild broken lands before one
came to the village of Los Angeles. But there was no trail to
Los Angeles. At Santa Fe the trail turned south and after
crawling over the Jornada del Muerto--Journey of the Dead
Man--threading the great Pass of the North (El Paso) and
crossing a vast desert, reached Chihuahua City.

Looked at in one way, Santa Fe was a mud village. In another
way, it was the solitary oasis of human picturesqueness in a
continent of vacancy. Like that of Athens, though of an
entirely different quality, its fame was out of all proportion
to its size. In a strong chapter, entitled "A Caravan Enters
Santa Fe," R. L. Duffus _(The Santa Fe Trail)_ elaborates on
how for all travelers the town always had "the lure of
adventure." Josiah Gregg doubted whether "the first sight of
the walls of Jerusalem were beheld with much more tumultuous
and soul-enrapturing joy" than Santa Fe was by a caravan
topping the last rise and, eight hundred miles of solitude
behind it, looking down on the town's shining walls and

No other town of its size in America has been the subject of
and focus for as much good literature as Santa Fe. Pittsburgh
and dozens of other big cities all put together have not
inspired one tenth of the imaginative play that Santa Fe has
inspired. Some of the transcontinental railroads probably
carry as much freight in a day as went over the Santa Fe Trail
in all the wagons in all the years they pulled over the Santa
Fe Trail. But the Santa Fe Trail is one of the three great
trails of America that, though plowed under, fenced across,
and cemented over, seem destined for perennial travel--by
those happily able to go without tourist guides. To quote
Robert Louis Stevenson, "The greatest adventures are not those
we go to seek." The other two trails comparable to the Santa
Fe are also of the West--the Oregon Trail for emigrants and
the Chisholm Trail for cattle.

For additional literature see "Mountain Men," "Stagecoaches,
Freighting," "Surge of Life in the West."

CATHER, WILLA. _Death Comes for the Archbishop_, Knopf, New
York, 1927. Historical novel.

CONNELLEY, W. E. (editor). _Donithan's Expedition_, 1907. Saga
of the Mexican War. OP.

DAVIS, W. W. H. _El Gringo, or New Mexico and Her People_,
1856; reprinted by Rydal, Santa Fe, 1938. OP. Excellent on
manners and customs.

DUFFUS, R. L. _The Santa Fe Trail_, New York, 1930. OP.
Bibliography. Best book of this century on the subject.

DUNBAR, SEYMOUR. _History of Travel in America_, 1915; revised
edition issued by Tudor, New York, 1937.

GREGG, JOSIAH. _Commerce of the Prairies_, two vols., 1844.
Reprinted, but all OP. Gregg wrote as a man of experience and
not as a professional writer. He wrote not only the classic of
the Santa Fe trade and trail but one of the classics of
bedrock Americana. It is a commentary on civilization in the
Southwest that his work is not kept in print. Harvey
Fergusson, in _Rio Grande_, has written a penetrating
criticism of the man and his subject. In 1941 and 1944 the
University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, issued two volumes of
the _Diary and Letters of Josiah Gregg_, edited by Maurice G.
Fulton with Introductions by Paul Horgan. These volumes,
interesting in themselves, are a valuable complement to
Gregg's major work.

INMAN, HENRY. _The Old Santa Fe Trail_, 1897. A mine of lore.

LAUGHLIN, RUTH (formerly Ruth Laughlin Barker). _Caballeros_,
New York, 1931; republished by Caxton, Caldwell, Idaho, 1946.
Essayical goings into the life of things. Especially
delightful on burros. A book to be starred. _The Wind Leaves
No Shadow_, New York, 1948; Caxton, 1951. A novel around
Dona Tules Barcelo, the powerful, beautiful, and
silvered mistress of Santa Fe's gambling _sala_ in the 1830's
and '40's.

MAGOFFIN, SUSAN SHELBY. _Down the Santa Fe Trail_, Yale
University Press, New Haven, 1926. Delectable diary.

PILLSBURY, DOROTHY L. _No High Adobe_, University of New
Mexico Press, Albuquerque, 1950. Sketches, pleasant to read,
that make the _gente_ very real.

RUXTON, GEORGE FREDERICK. _Adventures in Mexico and the Rocky
Mountains_, London, 1847. In 1924 the second half of this book
was reprinted under title of _Wild Life in the Rocky
Mountains_. In 1950, with additional Ruxton writings
discovered by Clyde and Mae Reed Porter, the book, edited by
LeRoy R. Hafen, was reissued under title of _Ruxton of the
Rockies_, University of Oklahoma Press, Norman. Santa Fe is
only one incident in it. Ruxton illuminates whatever he
touches. He was in love with the wilderness and had a fire in
his belly. Other writers add details, but Ruxton and Gregg
embodied the whole Santa Fe world.

VESTAL, STANLEY. _The Old Santa Fe Trail_, Houghton Mifflin,
Boston, 1939.


Stagecoaches, Freighting

A GOOD INTRODUCTION to a treatment of the stagecoach of the
West would be Thomas De Quincey's "The English Mail-Coach."
The proper place to read about the coaches would be in Doctor
Lyon's Pony Express Museum, out from Pasadena, California. May
it never perish! Old Monte drives up now and then in Alfred
Henry Lewis' _Wolfville_ tales, and Bret Harte made Yuba Bill
crack the Whip; but, somehow, considering all the excellent
expositions and reminiscing of stage-coaching in western
America, the proud, insolent, glorious figure of the driver
has not been adequately pictured.

Literature on "Santa Fe and the Santa Fe Trail" is pertinent.
See also under "Pony Express."

York, 1930. A combination of history and autobiography. Routes
to and in California; much of Texas. Enjoyable reading.
Excellent on drivers, travelers, stations, "pass the mustard,
please." Bibliography. OP.

CONKLING, ROSCOE P. and MARGARET B. _The Butterfield Overland
Trail, 1857-1869_, Arthur H. Clark Co., Glendage, California.
Three volumes replete with facts from politics in Washington
over mail contracts to Horsehead Crossing on the Pecos River.

DOBBIE, J. FRANK. Chapter entitled "Pistols, Poker and the
Petit Mademoiselle in a Stagecoach," in _The Flavor of Texas_
1936. OP.

DUFFUS, R. L. _The Santa Fe Trail_ New York, 1930. Swift
reading. Well selected bibliography. OP.

FREDERICK, J. V. _Ben Holladay, the Stage Coach King_, Clark,
Glendale, California, 1940. Bibliography.

HALEY, J. EVETTS. Chapter v, "The Stage-Coach Mail," in _Fort
Concho and the Texas Frontier_, illustrated by Harold Bugbee,
San Angelo Standard-Times, San Angelo, Texas, 1952. Strong on
frontier crossed by stage line.

HUNGERFORD, EDWARD. _Wells Fargo: Advancing the Frontier_,
Random House, New York, 1949. Written without regard for the
human beings that the all-swallowing corporation crushed.
Facts on highwaymen.

INMAN, HENRY. _The Old Santa Fe Trail_, New York, 1897. OP.
_The Great Salt Lake Trail_, 1898. OP. Many first-hand
incidents and characters.

MAJORS, ALEXANDER. _Seventy Years on the Frontier_, Chicago,
1893. Reprinted by Long's College Book Co., Columbus, Ohio.
Majors was the lead steer of all freighters.

ORMSBY, W. L. _The Butterfield Overland Mail_, edited by Lyle
H. Wright and Josephine M. Bynum, Huntington Library, San
Marino, California, 1942. Ormsby rode the stage from St. Louis
to San Francisco in 1858 and contributed to the New York
_Herald_ the lively articles now made into this book.

ROOT, FRANK A., and CONNELLEY, W. E. _The Overland Stage to
California_, Topeka, Kansas, 1901. Reprinted by Long's College
Book Co., Columbus, Ohio. A full storehouse. Basic.

SANTLEBEN, AUGUST. _A Texas Pioneer_, edited by I. D. Affleck,
New York, 1910. OP. Best treatise available on freighting on
Chihuahua Trail.

TWAIN, MARK. _Roughing It_, 1871. Mark Twain went west by

WINTHER, O. O. _Express and Stagecoach Days in California_,
Stanford University Press, 1926. Compact, with bibliography.


Pony Express

"PRESENTLY the driver exclaims, `Here he comes!'

"Every neck is stretched and every eye strained. Away across
the endless dead level of the prairie a black speck appears
against the sky. In a second or two it becomes a horse and
rider, rising and falling, rising and falling sweeping towards
us nearer and nearer--growing more and more distinct, more and
more sharply defined--nearer and still nearer, and the flutter
of the hoofs comes faintly to the ear--another instant a whoop
and a hurrah from our upper deck [of the stagecoach], a wave
of the rider's hand, but no reply, and man and horse burst
past our excited faces, and go swinging away like a belated
fragment of a storm."--Mark Twain, _Roughing It_.

A word cannot be defined in its own terms; nor can a region,
or a feature of that region. Analogy and perspective are
necessary for comprehension. The sense of horseback motion has
never been better realized than by Kipling in "The Ballad of
East and West." See "Horses."

BRADLEY, GLENN D._ The Story of the Pony Express_, Chicago,
1913. Nothing extra. OP.

BREWERTON, G. D. _Overland with Kit Carson_, New York, 1930.
Bibliography on West in general.

CHAPMAN, ARTHUR. _The Pony Express_, Putnam's, New York, 1932.
Good reading and bibliography.

DOBIE, J. FRANK. Chapter on "Rides and Riders," in _On the
Open Range_, published in 1931; reprinted by Banks Up
shaw, Dallas. Chapter on "Under the Saddle" in _The Mustangs_.

HAPEN, LEROY. _The Overland Mail_, Cleveland, 1926. Factual,
bibliography. OP.

ROOT, FRANK A., and CONNELLEY, W. E. _The Overland Stage to
California_, Topeka, Kansas, 1901. Reprinted by Long's College
Book Co., Columbus, Ohio. Basic work.

VISSCHER, FRANK J. _A Thrilling and Truthful History of the
Pony Express_, Chicago, 1908. OP. Not excessively "thrilling."


Surge of Life in the West

THE WANDERINGS of Cabeza de Vaca, Coronado, De Soto, and La
Salle had long been chronicled, although the chronicles had
not been popularized in English, when in 1804 Captain
Meriwether Lewis and Captain William Clark set out to explore
not only the Louisiana Territory, which had just been
purchased for the United States by President Thomas Jefferson,
but on west to the Pacific. Their _Journals_, published in
1814, initiated a series of chronicles comparable in scope,
vitality, and manhood adventure to the great collection known
as _Hakluyt's Voyages_.

Between 1904 and 1907 Reuben Gold Thwaites, one of the
outstanding editors of the English-speaking world, brought out
in thirty-two volumes his epic _Early Western Travels_. This
work includes the Lewis and Clark _Journals_, every student of
the West, whether Northwest or Southwest, goes to the
collection sooner or later. It is a commentary on the values
of life held by big rich boasters of patriotism in the West
that virtually all the chronicles in the collection remain out
of print.

An important addendum to the Thwaites collection of _Early
Western Travels_ is "The Southwest Historical Series," edited
by Ralph P. Bieber--twelve volumes, published 1931-43, by
Clark, Glendale, California.

The stampede to California that began in 1849 climaxed all
migration orgies of the world in its lust for gold; but the
lust for gold was merely one manifestation of a mighty
population's lust for life. Railroads raced each other to
cross the continent. Ten million Longhorns were going up the
from Texas while the last of a hundred million buffaloes,
killed in herds--the greatest slaughter in history--were being
skinned. Dodge City was the Cowboy Capital of the world,
and Chicago was becoming "hog butcher of the world."
Miller and Lux were expanding their ranges so that, as others
boasted, their herds could trail from Oregon to Baja
California and bed down every night on Miller and Lux's own

Hubert Howe Bancroft (1832-1918) was massing in San
Francisco at his own expense the greatest assemblage of
historical documents any one individual ever assembled. While
his interviewers and note-takers sorted down tons of
manuscript, he was employing a corps of historians to write
at first designed as a history of the Pacific states, grew in
twenty-eight volumes to embrace also Alaska, British Columbia,
Texas, Mexico, and Central America, aside from five
volumes on the Native Races and six volumes of essays.
Meantime he was printing these volumes in sets of thousands
selling them through an army of agents that covered America.

Collis P. Huntington (1821-1900) was building the
Southern Pacific Railroad into a network, interlocked with
other systems and steamship lines, not only enveloping
California land but also the whole economic and political life
that and other states, with headquarters in the U.S. Congress.
Then his nephew, Henry E. Huntington (1850-1927), taking over
his wealth and power, was building gardens at San Marino,
California, collecting art, books, and manuscripts to
make, without benefit of any institution of learning and in
defiance of all the slow processes of tradition found at
Oxford and Harvard, a Huntington Library and a Huntington Art
Gallery that, set down amid the most costly botanical
profusion imaginable, now rival the world's finest.

The dreams were of empire. Old men and young toiled as
"terribly" as mighty Raleigh. The "spacious times" of Queen
Elizabeth seemed, indeed, to be translated to another sphere,
though here the elements that went into the mixture were
less diverse. Boom methods of Gargantuan scale were applied
to cultural factors as well as to the physical. Few men
stopped to reflect that while objects of art may be bought by
the wholesale, the development of genuine culture is too
intimately personal and too chemically blended with the
spiritual to be bartered for. The Huntingtons paid a quarter
of a million dollars for Gainsborough's "The Blue Boy." It is
very beautiful. Meanwhile the mustang grapevine waits for some
artist to paint the strong and lovely grace of its drapery and
thereby to enrich for land-dwellers every valley where it
hangs over elm or oak.

Most of the books in this section could be placed in other
sections. Many have been. They represent the vigor, vitality,
energy, and daring characteristic of our frontiers. To quote
Harvey Fergusson's phrase, the adventures of mettle have
always had "a tension that would not let them rest."

BARKER, EUGENE C. _The Life of Stephen F. Austin_, Dallas,
1925. Republished by Texas State Historical Association,
Austin. Iron-wrought biography of the leader in making Texas

BELL, HORACE. _Reminiscences of a Ranger, or Early Times in
California_, Los Angeles, 1881; reprinted, but OP. In this
book and in _On the Old West Coast_, Bell caught the lift and
spiritedness of life-hungry men.

BIDWELL, JOHN (1819-1900). _Echoes of the Past_, Chico,
California (about 1900). Bidwell got to California several
years before gold was discovered. He became foremost citizen
and entertained scientists, writers, scholars, and artists at
his ranch home. His brief accounts of the trip across the
plains and of pioneer society in California are graphic,
charming, telling. The book goes in and out of print but is
not likely to die.

BILLINGTON, RAY ALLEN. _Westward Expansion: A History of the
American Frontier_, Macmillan, New York, 1949. This Alpha to
Omega treatise concludes with a seventy-five-page, double-
column, fine-print bibliography which not only
lists but comments upon most books and articles of any
consequence that have been published on frontier history.

BOURKE, JOHN G. _On the Border with Crook_, New York, 1891.
Now published by Long's College Book Co., Columbus, Ohio.
Bourke had an eager, disciplined mind, at once scientific and
humanistic; he had imagination and loyalty to truth and
justice; he had a strong body and joyed in frontier exploring.
He was a captain in the army but had nothing of the littleness
of the army mind exhibited by Generals Nelson Miles and O. O.
Howard in their egocentric reminiscences. I rank his book as
the meatiest and richest of all books dealing with campaigns
against Indians. In its amplitude it includes the whole
frontier. General George Crook was a wise, generous, and noble
man, but his _Autobiography_ (edited by Martin F. Schmitt;
University of Oklahoma Press) lacks that power in writing
necessary to turn the best subject on earth into a good book
and capable also, as Darwin demonstrated, of turning
earthworms into a classic.

BURNHAM, FREDERICK RUSSELL. _Scouting on Two Continents_, New
York, 1926; reprinted, Los Angeles, 1942. A brave book of
enthralling interest. The technique of scouting in the Apache
Country is illuminated by that of South Africa in the Boer
War. Hunting for life, Major Burnham carried it with him. OP.

DEVOTO, BERNARD. _The Year of Decision 1846_, Houghton
Mifflin, Boston, 1943. Critical interpretation as well as
depiction. The Mexican War, New Mexico, California, Mountain
Men, etc. DeVoto's _Across the Wide Missouri_ is wider in
spirit, less bound to political complexities. See under
"Mountain Men."

Reconnaissance from Fort Leavenworth, in Missouri, to San
Diego, in California, including Part of the Arkansas, Del
Norte, and Gila Rivers_, Washington, 1848. Emory's own vivid
report is only one item in _Executive Document No. 41_, 30th
Congress, 1st Session, with which it is bound. Lieutenant J.
W. Albert's _Journal_ and additional
_Report on New Mexico_, St. George Cooke's Odyssey of his
march from Santa Fe to San Diego, another _Journal_ by Captain
A. R. Johnson, the Torrey-Englemann report on botany,
illustrated with engravings, all go to make this one of the
meatiest of a number of meaty government publications. The
Emory part of it has been reprinted by the University of New
Mexico Press, under title of _Lieutenant Emory Reports_,
Introduction and Notes by Ross Calvin, Albuquerque, 1951.

Emory's great two-volume _Report on United States and Mexican
Boundary Survey_, Washington 1857 and 1859, is, aside from
descriptions of borderlands and their inhabitants, a veritable
encyclopedia, wonderfully illustrated, on western flora and
fauna. United States Commissioner on this Boundary Survey
(following the Mexican War) was John Russell Bartlett. While
exploring from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific and far down
into Mexico, he wrote _Personal Narrative of Explorations and
Incidents in Texas, New Mexico, California, Sonora and
Chihuahua_. published in two volumes, New York, 1854. For me
very little rewritten history has the freshness and
fascination of these strong, firsthand personal narratives,
though I recognize many of them as being the stuff of
literature rather than literature itself.

FOWLER, JACOB. _The Journal of Jacob Fowler, 1821-1822_,
edited by Elliott Coues, New York, 1898. Hardly another
chronicle of the West is so Defoe-like in homemade realism,
whether on Indians and Indian horses or Negro Paul's
experience with the Mexican "Lady" at San Fernando de Taos.
Should be reprinted.

GAMBRELL, HERBERT. _Anson Jones: The Last President of Texas_,
Garden City, New York, 1948; now distributed by Southern
Methodist University Press, Dallas, Texas. Anson Jones was
more surged over than surgent. Infused with a larger
comprehension than that behind many a world figure, this
biography of a provincial figure is perhaps the most artfully
written that Texas has produced. It goes into the soul of the

HOBBS, JAMES. _Wild Life in the Far West_, Hartford,
1872. Hobbs saw just about all the elephants and heard just
about all the owls to be seen and heard in the Far West
including western Mexico. Should be reprinted.

HULBERT, ARCHER BUTLER. _Forty-Niners: The Chronicle of the
California Trail_, Little, Brown, Boston, 1931. Hulbert read
exhaustively in the exhausting literature by and about the
gold hunters rushing to California. Then he wove into a
synthetic diary the most interesting and illuminating records
on happenings, characters, ambitions, talk, singing, the whole
life of the emigrants.

IRVING, WASHINGTON. Irving made his ride into what is now
Oklahoma in 1832. He had recently returned from a seventeen-
year stay in Europe and was a mature literary man--as mature
as a conforming romanticist could become Prairie life
refreshed him. A _Tour on the Prairies_, published in 1835,
remains refreshing. It is illuminated by _Washington Irving on
the Prairie; or, A Narrative of the Southwest in the Year
1832_, by Henry Leavitt Ellsworth (who accompanied Irving),
edited by Stanley T. Williams and Barbara D. Simison, New
York, 1937; by _The Western Journals of Washington Irving_,
excellently edited by John Francis McDermott, Norman,
Oklahoma, 1944; and by Charles J. Latrobe's _The Rambler in
North America, 1832-1833_, New York, 1835.

JAMES, MARQUIS. _The Raven_, Bobbs-Merrill, Indianapolis,
1929. Graphic life of Sam Houston.

KURZ, RUDOLPH FRIEDERICH. _Journal of Rudolph Friederich Kurz:
. . . His Experiences among Fur Traders and American Indians
on the Mississippi and Upper Missouri Rivers, during the Years
of 1846-1852_, U.S. Bureau of Ethnology Bulletin 115,
Washington, 1937. The public has not had a chance at this
book, which was printed rather than published. Kurz both saw
and recorded with remarkable vitality. He was an artist and
the volume contains many reproductions of his paintings and
drawings. One of the most readable and illuminating of western

LEWIS, OSCAR. _The Big Four_, New York, 1938. Railroad

LOCKWOOD, FRANK C. _Arizona Characters_, Los Angeles,
California, 1928. Fresh sketches of representative men. The
book deserves to be better known than it is. OP.

LYMAN, GEORGE D. _John Marsh Pioneer_, New York, 1930. Prime
biography and prime romance. Laid mostly in California. This
book almost heads the list of all biographies of western men.

PARKMAN, FRANCIS. _The Oregon Trail_, 1849. Parkman knew how
to write but some other penetrators of the West put down about
as much. School assignments have made his book a recognized

PATTIE, JAMES O. _Personal Narrative_, Cincinnati, 1831;
reprinted, but OP. Positively gripping chronicle of life in
New Mexico and the Californias during Mexican days.

PIKE, ZEBULON M. _The Southwestern Expedition of Zebulon M.
Pike_, Philadelphia, 1810. The 1895 edition edited by Elliott
Coues is the most useful to students. No edition is in print.
Pike's explorations of the Southwest (1806-7) began while the
great Lewis and Clark expedition (1804-6) was ending. His
journal is nothing like so informative as theirs but is just
as readable. _The Lost Pathfinder_ is a biography of Pike by
W. Eugene Hollon, University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, 1949.

TWAIN, MARK. _Roughing It_, 1872. Mark Twain was a man who
wrote and not merely a writer in man-form. He was frontier
American in all his fibers. He was drunk with western life at
a time when both he and it were standing on tiptoe watching
the sun rise over the misty mountain tops, and he wrote of
what he had seen and lived before he became too sober.
_Roughing It_ comes nearer catching the energy, the
youthfulness, the blooming optimism, the recklessness, the
lust for the illimitable in western life than any other book.
It deals largely with mining life, but the surging vitality of
this life as reflected by Mark Twain has been the chief common
denominator of all American frontiers and was as
characteristic of Texas "cattle kings" when grass was free as
of Virginia City "nabobs" in bonanza.


Range Life: Cowboys, Cattle, Sheep

THE COWBOY ORIGINATED in Texas. The Texas cowboy, along with
the Texas cowman, was an evolvement from and a blend of the
riding, shooting, frontier-formed southerner, the Mexican-
Indian horseback worker with livestock (the vaquero), and the
Spanish open-range rancher. The blend was not in blood, but in
occupational techniques. I have traced this genesis with more
detail in _The Longhorns_. Compared with evolution in species,
evolution in human affairs is meteor-swift. The driving of
millions of cattle and horses from Texas to stock the whole
plains area of North America while, following the Civil War,
it was being denuded of buffaloes and secured from Indian
domination, enabled the Texas cowboy to set his impress upon
the whole ranching industry. The cowboy became the best-known
occupational type that America has given the world. He exists
still and will long exist, though much changed from the
original. His fame derives from the past.

Romance, both genuine and spurious, has obscured the realities
of range and trail. The realities themselves have, however,
been such that few riders really belonging to the range wished
to lead any other existence. Only by force of circumstances
have they changed "the grass beneath and the sky above" for a
more settled, more confining, and more materially remunerative
way of life. Some of the old-time cowboys were little more
adaptable to change than the Plains Indians; few were less
reluctant to plow or work in houses. Heaven in their dreams
was a range better watered than the one they knew, with grass
never stricken by drought,
plenty of fat cattle, the best horses and comrades of their
experience, more of women than they talked about in public,
and nothing at all of golden streets, golden harps, angel
wings, and thrones; it was a mere extension, somewhat
improved, of the present. Bankers, manufacturers, merchants,
and mechanics seldom so idealize their own occupations; they
work fifty weeks a year to go free the other two.

For every hired man on horseback there have been hundreds of
plowmen in America, and tens of millions of acres of
rangelands have been plowed under, but who can cite a single
autobiography of a laborer in the fields of cotton, of corn,
of wheat? Or do coal miners, steelmongers, workers in oil
refineries, factory hands of any kind of factory, the
employees of chain stores and department stores ever write
autobiographies? Many scores of autobiographies have been
written by range men, perhaps half of them by cowboys who
never became owners at all. A high percentage of the
autobiographies are in pamphlet form; many that were written
have not been published. The trail drivers of open range days,
nearly all dead now, felt the urge to record experiences more
strongly than their successors. They realized that they had
been a part of an epic life.

The fact that the hired man on horseback has been as good a
man as the owner and, on the average, has been a more spirited
and eager man than the hand on foot may afford some
explanation of the validity and vitality of his chroniclings,
no matter how crude they be. On the other hand, the fact that
the rich owner and the college-educated aspirant to be a
cowboy soon learned, if they stayed on the range, that _a
man's a man for a' that_ may to some extent account for a
certain generous amplitude of character inherent in their most
representative reminiscences. Sympathy for the life biases my
judgment; that judgment, nevertheless, is that some of the
strongest and raciest autobiographic writing produced by
America has been by range men.

This is not to say that these chronicles are of a high
literary order. Their writers have generally lacked the

{illust. caption =
Tom Lea, in _The Longhorns_ by J. Frank Dobie (1941)}

of mind, the reflective wisdom, and the power of observation
found in personal narratives of the highest order. No man who
camped with a chuck wagon has written anything remotely
comparable to Charles M. Doughty's _Arabia Deserta_, a
chronicle at once personal and impersonal, restrainedly
subjective and widely objective, of his life with nomadic
Bedouins. Perspective is a concomitant of civilization. The
chronicles of the range that show perspective have come mostly
from educated New Englanders, Englishmen, and Scots. The great
majority of the chronicles are limited in subject matter to
physical activities. They make few concessions to "the desire
of the moth for the star"; they hardly enter the complexities
of life, including those of sex. In one section of the West at
one time the outstanding differences among range men were
between owners of sheep and owners of cattle, the ambition of
both being to hog the whole country. On another area of the
range at another time, the outstanding difference was between
little ranchers, many of whom were stealing, and big ranchers,
plenty of whom had stolen. Such differences are not exponents
of the kind of individualism that burns itself into great
human documents.

Seldom deeper than the chronicles does range fiction go below
physical surface into reflection, broodings, hungers-- the
smolderings deep down in a cowman oppressed by drought and
mortgage sitting in a rocking chair on a ranch gallery looking
at the dust devils and hoping for a cloud; the goings-on
inside a silent cowboy riding away alone from an empty pen to
which he will never return; the streams of consciousness in a
silent man and a silent woman bedded together in a wind-lashed
frame house away out on the lone prairie. The wide range of
human interests leaves ample room for downright, straightaway
narratives of the careers of strong men. If the literature of
the range ever matures, however, it will include keener
searchings for meanings and harder struggles for human truths
by writers who strive in "the craft so long to lerne." For
three-quarters of a century the output of fiction on the
cowboy has been tremendous, and
it shows little diminution. Mass production inundating the
masses of readers has made it difficult for serious
fictionists writing about range people to get a hearing.

The code of the West was concentrated into the code of the
range--and not all of it by any means depended upon the six-
shooter. No one can comprehend this code without knowing
something about the code of the Old South, whence the Texas
cowboy came.

Mexican goats make the best eating in Mexico and mohair has
made good money for many ranchers of the Southwest. Goats,
goat herders, goatskins, and wine in goatskins figure in the
literature of Spain as prominently as six-shooters in Blazing
Frontier fiction--and far more pleasantly. Read George
Borrow's _The Bible in Spain_, one of the most delectable of
travel books. Beyond a few notices of Mexican goat herders,
there is on the subject of goats next to nothing readable in
American writings. Where there is no competition, supremacy is
small distinction; so I should offend no taste by saying that
"The Man of Goats" in my own _Tongues of the Monte_ is about
the best there is so far as goats go.

Although sheep are among the most salient facts of range life,
they have, as compared with cattle and horses, been a dim item
in the range tradition. Yet, of less than a dozen books on
sheep and sheepmen, more than half of them are better written
than hundreds of books concerning cowboy life. Mary Austin's
_The Flock_ is subtle and beautiful; Archer B. Gilfillan's
_Sheep_ is literature in addition to having much information;
Hughie Call's _Golden Fleece_ is delightful; Winifred Kupper's
_The Golden Hoof_ and _Texas Sheepman_ have charm--a rare
quality in most books on cows and cow people. Among
furnishings in the cabin of Robert Maudslay, "the Texas
Sheepman," were a set of Sir Walter Scott's works,
Shakespeare, and a file of the _Illustrated London News_. "A
man who read Shakespeare and the _Illustrated London News_ had
little to contribute to
Come a ti yi yoopee
Ti yi ya!"

O. Henry's ranch experiences in Texas were largely confined to
a sheep ranch. The setting of his "Last of the Troubadours" is
a sheep ranch. I nominate it as the best range story in
American fiction.

"Cowboy Songs" and "Horses" are separate chapters following
this. The literature cited in them is mostly range literature,
although precious little in all the songs rises to the status
of poetry. A considerable part of the literature listed under
"Texas Rangers" and "The Bad Man Tradition" bears on range

North_, New York, 1939. Abbott, better known as Teddy Blue,
used to give his address as Three Duce Ranch, Gilt Edge,
Montana. Helena Huntington Smith, who actually wrote and
arranged his reminiscences, instead of currying him down and
putting a checkrein on him, spurred him in the flanks and told
him to swaller his head. He did. This book is franker about
the women a rollicky cowboy was likely to meet in town than
all the other range books put together. The fact that Teddy
Blue's wife was a half-breed Indian, daughter of Granville
Stuart, and that Indian women do not object to the truth about
sex life may account in part for his frankness. The book is
mighty good reading. OP.

ADAMS, ANDY. _The Log of a Cowboy_ (1903). In 1882, at the age
of twenty-three, Andy Adams came to Texas from Indiana. For
about ten years he traded horses and drove them up the trail.
He knew cattle people and their ranges from Brownsville to
Caldwell, Kansas. After mining for another decade, he began to
write. If all other books on trail driving were destroyed, a
reader could still get a just and authentic conception of
trail men, trail work, range cattle, cow horses, and the cow
country in general from _The Log of a Cowboy_. It is a novel
without a plot, a woman, character development, or sustained
dramatic incidents; yet it is the classic of the occupation.
It is a simple, straightaway narrative that takes a trail herd
from the Rio Grande to the Canadian line,
the hands talking as naturally as cows chew cuds, every page
illuminated by an easy intimacy with the life. Adams wrote six
other books. _The Outlet, A Texas Matchmaker, Cattle Brands_,
and _Reed Anthony, Cowman_ all make good reading. _Wells
Brothers_ and _The Ranch on the Beaver_ are stories for boys.
I read them with pleasure long after I was grown. All but _The
Log of a Cowboy_ are OP, published by Houghton Mifflin,

ADAMS, RAMON F. _Cowboy Lingo_, Boston, 1936. A dictionary of
cowboy words, figures of speech, picturesque phraseology,
slang, etc., with explanations of many factors peculiar to
range life. OP. _Western Words_, University of Oklahoma Press,
1944. A companion book. _Come an' Get It_, University of
Oklahoma Press, Norman, 1952. Informal exposition of chuck
wagon cooks.

ALDRIDGE, REGINALD. _Ranch Notes_, London, 1884. Aldridge, an
educated Englishman, got into the cattle business before, in
the late eighties, it boomed itself flat. His book is not
important, but it is maybe a shade better than _Ranch Life in
Southern Kansas and the Indian Territory_ by Benjamin S.
Miller, New York, 1896. Aldridge and Miller were partners, and
each writes kindly about the other.

ALLEN, JOHN HOUGHTON. _Southwest_, Lippincott, Philadelphia,
1952. A chemical compound of highly impressionistic
autobiographic nonfiction and highly romantic fiction and folk
tales. The setting is a ranch of Mexican tradition in the
lower border country of Texas, also saloons and bawdy houses
of border towns. Vaqueros and their work in the brush are
intensely vivid. The author has a passion for superlatives and
for "a joyous cruelty, a good cruelty, a young cruelty."

ARNOLD, OREN, and HALE, J. P. _Hot Irons_, Macmillan, New
York, 1940. Technique and lore of cattle brands. OP.

AUSTIN, MARY. _The Flock_, Boston, 1906, OP. Mary Austin saw
the meanings of things; she was a creator. Very quietly she
sublimated life into the literature of pictures and

Australian ranching is not foreign to American ranching.
The best book on the subject that I have found is _Pastures
New_, by R. V. Billis and A. S. Kenyon, London, 1930.

BARNARD, EVAN G. ("Parson"). _A Rider of the Cherokee Strip_,
Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 1936. Savory with little incidents
and cowboy humor. OP.

BARNES, WILL C. _Tales from the X-Bar Horse Camp_, Chicago,
1920. OP. Good simple narratives. _Apaches and Longhorns_, Los
Angeles, 1941. Autobiography. OP. _Western Grazing Grounds and
Forest Ranges_, Chicago, 1913. OP. Governmentally factual.
Barnes was in the U.S. Forest Service and was informed.

BARROWS, JOHN R. _Ubet_, Caldwell, Idaho, 1934. Excellent on
Northwest; autobiographical. OP.

BECHDOLT, FREDERICK R. _Tales of the Old Timers_, New York,
1924. Vivid, economical stories of "The Warriors of the Pecos"
(Billy the Kid and the troubles on John Chisum's ranch-
empire), of Butch Cassidy and his Wild Bunch in their Wyoming
hide-outs, of the way frontier Texans fought Mexicans and
Comanches over the open ranges. Research clogs the style of
many historians; perhaps it is just as well that Bechdolt did
not search more extensively into the arcana of footnotes. OP.

BOATRIGHT, MODY C. _Tall Tales from Texas Cow Camps_, Dallas,
1934. The tales are tall all right and true to cows that never
saw a milk bucket. OP. Reprinted 1946 by Haldeman-Julius,
Girard, Kansas.

BOREIN, EDWARD. _Etchings of the West_, edited by Edward S.
Spaulding, Santa Barbara, California, 1950. OP. A very
handsome folio; primarily a reproduction of sketches, many of
which are on range subjects. Ed Borein tells more in them than
hundreds of windbags have told in tens of thousands of pages.
They are beautiful and authentic, even if they are what post-
impressionists call "documentary." Believers in the True Faith
say now that Leonardo da Vinci is documentary in his painting
of the Lord's Supper. Ed Borein was a great friend of Charlie
Russell's but not an imitator. _Etchings of the West_ will
soon be among the rarities of Western books.

BOWER, B. M. _Chip of the Flying U_, New York, 1904. Charles
Russell illustrated this and three other Bower novels.
Contrary to his denial, he is supposed to have been the
prototype for Chip. A long time ago I read _Chit of the Flying
U_ and _The Lure of the Dim Trails_ and thought them as good
as Eugene Manlove Rhodes's stories. That they have faded
almost completely out of memory is a commentary on my memory;
just the same, a character as well named as Chip should, if he
have substance beyond his name, leave an impression even on
weak memories. B. M. Bower was a woman, Bower being the name
of her first husband. A Montana cowpuncher named "Fiddle Back"
Sinclair was her second, and Robert Ellsworth Cowan became the
third. Under the name of Bud Cowan he published a book of
reminiscences entitled _Range Rider_ (Garden City, N. Y.,
1930). B. M. Bower wrote a slight introduction to it; neither
he nor she says anything about being married to the other. In
the best of her fiction she is truer to life than he is in a
good part of his nonfiction. Her chaste English is partly
explained in an autobiographic note contributed to _Adventure_
magazine, December 10, 1924. Her restless father had moved the
family from Minnesota to Montana. There, she wrote, he "taught
me music and how to draw plans of houses (he was an architect
among other things) and to read _Paradise Lost_ and Dante and
H. Rider Haggard and the Bible and the Constitution--and my
taste has been extremely catholic ever since."

BRANCH, E. DOUGLAS. _The Cowboy and His Interpreters_, New
York, 1926. Useful bibliography on range matters, and
excellent criticism of two kinds of fiction writers. OP.

BRATT, JOHN. _Trails of Yesterday_, Chicago, 1921. John Bratt,
twenty-two years old, came to America from England in 1864,
went west, and by 1870 was ranching on the Platte.
He became a big operator, but his reminiscences, beautifully
printed, are stronger on camp cooks and other hired hands than
on cattle "kings." Nobody ever heard a cowman call himself or
another cowman a king. "Cattle king" is journalese.

BRISBIN, GENERAL JAMES S. _The Beef Bonanza; or, How to Get
Rich on the Plains_, Philadelphia, 1881. One of several books
of its decade designed to appeal to eastern and European
interest in ranching as an investment. Figureless and with
more human interest is _Prairie Experiences in Handling Cattle
and Sheep_, by Major W. Shepherd (of England), London? 1884.

BRONSON, EDGAR BEECHER. _Cowboy Life on the Western Plains_,
Chicago, 1910. _The Red Blooded_, Chicago, 1910. Freewheeling

BROOKS, BRYANT B. _Memoirs_, Gardendale, California, 1939. The
book never was published; it was merely printed to satisfy the
senescent vanity of a property-worshiping, cliche-parroting
reactionary who made money ranching before he became governor
of Wyoming. He tells a few good anecdotes of range days.
Numerous better books pertaining to the range are NOT
listed here; this mediocrity represents a particular type.

BROTHERS, MARY HUDSON. A _Pecos Pioneer_, University of New
Mexico Press, Albuquerque, 1943. Superior to numerous better-
known books. See comment under "Women Pioneers."

BROWN, DEE, and SCHMITT, MARTIN F. _Trail Driving Days_,
Scribner's, New York, 1952. Primarily a pictorial record, more
on the side of action than of realism, except for post-trailing period.
Excellent bibliography.

BURTON, HARLEY TRUE. A _History of the J A Ranch_, Austin,
1928. Facts about one of the greatest ranches of Texas and its
founder, Charles Goodnight. OP.

CALL, HUGHIE. _Golden Fleece_, Boston, 1942. Hughie married a
sheepman, and after mothering the range as well as children
with him for a quarter of a century, concluded that Montana is
still rather masculine. Especially good on domestic life and
on sheepherders. OP.

CANTON, FRANK M. _Frontier Trails_, edited by E. E. Dale,
Boston, 1930. OP. Good on tough hombres.

CLAY, JOHN. My _Life on the Range_, privately printed,
Chicago, 1924. OP. John Clay, an educated Scot, came to Canada
in 1879 and in time managed some of the largest British-owned
ranches of North America. His book is the best of all sources
on British-owned ranches. It is just as good on cowboys and
sheepherders. Clay was a fine gentleman in addition to being a
canny businessman in the realm of cattle and land. He
appreciated the beautiful and had a sense of style.

CLELAND, ROBERT GLASS. _The Cattle on a Thousand Hills_,
Huntington Library, San Marino, California, 1941 (revised,
1951). Scholarly work on Spanish-Mexican ranching in

CLEAVELAND, AGNES MORLEY. _No Life for a Lady_, Houghton
Mifflin, Boston, 1941. Best book on range life from a woman's
point of view ever published. The setting is New Mexico; humor
and humanity prevail.

COLLINGS, ELLSWORTH. _The 101 Ranch_, University of Oklahoma
Press, Norman, 1937. The 101 Ranch was far more than a ranch;
it was a unique institution. The 101 Ranch Wild West Show is
emphasized in this book. OP.

COLLINS, DENNIS. _The Indians' Last Fight or the Dull Knife
Raid_, Press of the Appeal to Reason, Girard, Kansas, n.d.
Nearly half of this very scarce book deals autobiographically
with frontier range life. Realistic, strong, written from the
perspective of a man who "wanted something to read" in camp.

COLLINS, HUBERT E. _Warpath and Cattle Trail_, New York, 1928.
The pageant of trail life as it passed by a stage stand in
Oklahoma; autobiographical. Beautifully printed and
illustrated. Far better than numerous other out-of-print books
that bring much higher prices in the second-hand market.

CONN, WILLIAM (translator). _Cow-Boys and Colonels: Narrative
of a Journey across the Prairie and over the Black Hills of
Dakota_, London, 1887; New York (1888?). More of a curiosity
than an illuminator, the book is a sparsely annotated
translation of _Dans les Montagnes Rocheuses_, by Le Baron E.
de Mandat-Grancey, Paris, October, 1884. (The
only copy I have examined is of 1889 printing.) It is a
gossipy account of an excursion made in 1883-84; cowboys and
ranching are viewed pretty much as a sophisticated Parisian
views a zoo. The author must have felt more at home with the
fantastic Marquis de Mores of Medora, North Dakota. The book
appeared at a time when European capital was being invested in
western ranches. It was followed by _La Breche aux Buffles:
Un Ranch Francais dans le Dakota_, Paris, 1889. Not
translated so far as I know.

COOK, JAMES H. _Fifty Years on the Old Frontier_, 1923. Cook
came to Texas soon after the close of the Civil War and became
a brush popper on the Frio River. Nothing better on cow work
in the brush country and trail driving in the seventies has
appeared. OP. A good deal of the same material was put into
Cook's _Longhorn Cowboy_ (Putnam's, 1942), to which the
pushing Mr. Howard R. Driggs attached his name.

COOLIDGE, DANE. _Texas Cowboys_, 1937. Thin, but genuine.
_Arizona Cowboys_, 1938. _Old California Cowboys_, 1939. All
well illustrated by photographs and all OP.

Cox, JAMES. _The Cattle Industry of Texas and Adjacent
Territory_, St. Louis, 1895. Contains many important
biographies and much good history. In 1928 I traded a pair of
store-bought boots to my uncle Neville Dobie for his copy of
this book. A man would have to throw in a young Santa
Gertrudis bull now to get a copy.

CRAIG, JOHN R. _Ranching with lords and Commons_, Toronto,
1903. During the great boom of the early 1880'S in the range
business, Craig promoted a cattle company in London and then
managed a ranch in western Canada. His book is good on
mismanaged range business and it is good on people, especially
lords, and the land. He attributes to De Quincey a Latin
quotation that properly, I think, belongs to Thackeray. He
quotes Hamlin Garland: "The trail is poetry; a wagon road is
prose; the railroad, arithmetic." He was probably not so good
at ranching as at writing. His book supplements _From Home to
Home_, by Alex. Staveley Hill, New York, 1885. Hill was a
major investor in the Oxley
Ranch, and was, I judge, the pompous cheat and scoundrel that
Craig said he was.

CRAWFORD, LEWIS F. _Rekindling Camp Fires: The Exploits of Ben
Arnold (Connor)_, Bismarck, North Dakota, 1926. OP. The skill
of Lewis F. Crawford of the North Dakota Historical Society
made this a richer autobiography than if Arnold had been
unaided. He was squaw man, scout, trapper, soldier, deserter,
prospector, and actor in other occupations as well as cowboy.
He had a fierce sense of justice that extended to Indians. His
outlook was wider than that of the average ranch hand.
_Badlands and Broncho Trails_, Bismarck, 1922, is a slight
book of simple narratives that catches the tune of the
Badlands life. OP. _Ranching Days in Dakota_, Wirth Brothers,
Baltimore, 1950, is good on horse-raising and the terrible
winter of 1886-87.

CULLEY, JOHN. _Cattle, Horses, and Men_, Los Angeles, 1940.
Much about the noted Bell Ranch of New Mexico. Especially good
on horses. Culley was educated at Oxford. When I visited him
in California, he had on his table a presentation copy of a
book by Walter Pater. His book has the luminosity that comes
from cultivated intelligence. OP.

DACY, GEORGE F. _Four Centuries of Florida Ranching_, St.
Louis, 1940. OP. In _Crooked Trails_, Frederic Remington has a
chapter (illustrated) on "Cracker Cowboys of Florida," and
_Lake Okeechobee_, by A. J. Hanna and Kathryn Abbey,
Indianapolis, 1948, treats of modern ranching in Florida, but
the range people of that state have been too lethargic-minded
to write about themselves and no Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings has
settled in their midst to interpret them.

DALE, E. E. _The Range Cattle Industry_, Norman, Oklahoma,
1930. Economic aspects. Bibliography. _Cow Country,_ Norman,
Oklahoma, 1942. Bully tales and easy history. Both books are

DANA, RICHARD HENRY. _Two Years Before the Mast_, 1841. This
transcript of reality has been reprinted many times. It is the
classic of the hide and tallow trade of California.

DAVID, ROBERT D. _Malcolm Campbell, Sheriff_, Casper, Wyoming,
1932. Much of the "Johnson County War" between cowmen and
thieving nesters. OP.

DAYTON, EDSON C. _Dakota Days_. Privately printed by the
author at Clifton Springs, New York, 1937--three hundred
copies only. Dayton was more sheepman than cowman. He had a
spiritual content. His very use of the word _intellectual_ on
the second page of his book; his estimate of Milton and
Gladstone, adjacent to talk about a frontier saloon; his
consciousness of his own inner growth--something no extravert
cowboy ever noticed, usually because he did not have it; his
quotation to express harmony with nature:

I have some kinship to the bee,
I am boon brother with the tree;
The breathing earth is part of me--

all indicate a refinement that any gambler could safely bet
originated in the East and not in Texas or the South.

DOBIE, J. FRANK. _A Vaquero of the Brush Country_, 1929. Much
on border troubles over cattle, the "skinning war," running
wild cattle in the brush, mustanging, trail driving; John
Young's narrative, told in the first person, against range
backgrounds. _The Longhorns_, illustrated by Tom Lea, 1941.
History of the Longhorn breed, psychology of stampedes; days
of maverickers and mavericks; stories of individual lead
steers and outlaws of the range; stories about rawhide and
many other related subjects. The book attempts to reveal the
blend made by man, beast, and range. Both books published by
Little, Brown, Boston. _The Mustangs_, 1952. See under


Back to Full Books