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 Department: Department of History
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Mary Jones: Last First Lady of the Republic of Texas

Mary Jones: Last First Lady of the Republic of Texas

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Date: December 2011
Creator: Fish, Birney Mark
Description: Abstract This dissertation uses archival and interpretive methods to examine the life and contributions of Mary Smith McCrory Jones in Texas. Specifically, this project investigates the ways in which Mary Jones emerged into the public sphere, utilized myth and memory, and managed her life as a widow. Each of these larger areas is examined in relation to historiographicaly accepted patterns and in the larger context of women in Texas, the South, and the nation during this period. Mary Jones, 1819-1907, experienced many of the key early periods in Anglo Texas history. The research traces her family’s immigration to Austin’s Colony and their early years under Mexican sovereignty. The Texas Revolution resulted in her move to Houston and her first brief marriage. Following the death of her husband she met and married Anson Jones, a physician who served in public posts throughout the period of the Texas Republic. Over time Anson was politically and personally rejected to the point that he committed suicide. This dissertation studies the effects this death had upon Mary’s personal goals, her use of a widow’s status to achieve her objectives, and her eventual emergence as a “Professional Widow.” Mary Jones’s attempts to rehabilitate her husband’s public ...
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Morale in the Western Confederacy, 1864-1865: Home Front and Battlefield

Morale in the Western Confederacy, 1864-1865: Home Front and Battlefield

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Date: May 2006
Creator: Clampitt, Brad R.
Description: This dissertation is a study of morale in the western Confederacy from early 1864 until the Civil War's end in spring 1865. It examines when and why Confederate morale, military and civilian, changed in three important western states, Mississippi, Alabama, and Tennessee. Focusing on that time frame allows a thorough examination of the sources, increases the opportunity to produce representative results, and permits an assessment of the lingering question of when and why most Confederates recognized, or admitted, defeat. Most western Confederate men and women struggled for their ultimate goal of southern independence until Federal armies crushed those aspirations on the battlefield. Until the destruction of the Army of Tennessee at Franklin and Nashville, most western Confederates still hoped for victory and believed it at least possible. Until the end they drew inspiration from battlefield developments, but also from their families, communities, comrades in arms, the sacrifices already endured, simple hatred for northerners, and frequently from anxiety for what a Federal victory might mean to their lives. Wartime diaries and letters of western Confederates serve as the principal sources. The dissertation relies on what those men and women wrote about during the war - military, political, social, or otherwise - ...
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My Crown Is in My Heart, Not on My Head: Heart Burial in England, France, and the Holy Roman Empire From Medieval Times to the Present

My Crown Is in My Heart, Not on My Head: Heart Burial in England, France, and the Holy Roman Empire From Medieval Times to the Present

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Date: May 2013
Creator: Duch, Anna M.
Description: Heart burial is a funerary practice that has been performed since the early medieval period. However, relatively little scholarship has been published on it in English. Heart burial began as a pragmatic way to preserve a body, but it became a meaningful tradition in Western Europe during the medieval and early modern periods. In an anthropological context, the ritual served the needs of elites and the societies they governed. Elites used heart burial not only to preserve their bodies, but to express devotion, stabilize the social order and advocate legitimacy, and even gain heaven. Heart burial assisted in the elite Christian, his or her family, and society pass through the liminal period of death. Over the centuries, heart burial evolved to remain relevant. The practice is extant to the present day, though the motivations behind it are very different from those of the medieval and early modern periods.
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Negotiating Interests: Elizabeth Montagu's Political Collaborations with Edward Montagu; George, Lord Lyttelton; and William Pulteney, Lord Bath

Negotiating Interests: Elizabeth Montagu's Political Collaborations with Edward Montagu; George, Lord Lyttelton; and William Pulteney, Lord Bath

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Date: December 2009
Creator: Bennett, Elizabeth Stearns
Description: This dissertation examines Elizabeth Robinson Montagu's relationships with three men: her husband, Edward Montagu; George Lyttelton, first baron Lyttelton; and William Pulteney, earl of Bath to show how these relationships were structured and how Elizabeth Montagu negotiated them in order to forward her own intellectual interests. Montagu's relationship with her husband Edward and her friendships with Lord Lyttelton and Lord Bath supplied her with important outlets for intellectual and political expression. Scholarly work on Montagu's friendships with other intellectual women has demonstrated how Montagu drew on the support of female friends in her literary ambitions, but at the same time, it has obscured her equally important male relationships. Without discounting the importance of female friendship to Montagu's intellectual life, this study demonstrates that Montagu's relationships with Bath, Lyttleton, and her husband were at least as important to her as those with women, and that her male friendships and relationships offered her entry into the political sphere. Elizabeth Montagu was greatly interested in the political debates of her day and she contributed to the political process in the various ways open to her as an elite woman and female intellectual. Within the context of these male friendships, Montagu had an opportunity ...
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Portrait of a southern Progressive: The political life and times of Governor Pat M. Neff of Texas, 1871-1952

Portrait of a southern Progressive: The political life and times of Governor Pat M. Neff of Texas, 1871-1952

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Date: May 2011
Creator: Stanley, Mark
Description: Pat M. Neff was a product of his political place and time. Born in Texas in 1871, during Reconstruction, he matured and prospered while his native state did the same as it transitioned from Old South to New South. Neff spent most of his life in Waco, a town that combined New South Progressivism with religious conservatism. This duality was reflected in Neff's own personality. On moral or religious issues, he was conservative. On economic and social issues, he was Progressive. He thus was a typical Southern Progressive who de-emphasized social and political change in favor of economic development. For instance, as governor from 1921 to 1925, his work to develop and conserve Texas' water resources brought urbanization and industrialization that made the New South a reality in the state. Neff was a devout Baptist which influenced his politics and philosophy. He was president of Baylor University, a Baptist institution, for fifteen years after leaving the governor s office and he led the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) in the 1940s. He combined Progressive and Christian values as he argued for the establishment of the United Nations and advocated forgiveness and brotherhood after World War II. The war's end marked the ...
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Prince Hall Freemasonry: The other invisible institution of the black community.

Prince Hall Freemasonry: The other invisible institution of the black community.

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Date: August 2006
Creator: Dunbar, Paul Lawrence
Description: The black church and Prince Hall Freemasonry both played important roles in the black experience in America. Freemasonry and the black church; one secular, the other spiritual, played equally important, interrelated roles in the way the black community addressed social, political, and economic problems in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
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The Public Polemics of Baldur von Schirach: A Study of National Socialist Rhetoric and Aesthetics, 1922-1945

The Public Polemics of Baldur von Schirach: A Study of National Socialist Rhetoric and Aesthetics, 1922-1945

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Date: December 2003
Creator: Koontz, Christopher N.
Description: This dissertation examines the political writings and speeches of Baldur von Schirach, a leading figure of the National Socialist German Worker's Party, and the means by which he chose to transmit his beliefs in totalitarianism, racism, and militarism. Schirach's activities serve as a case study of the Third Reich's artistic and cultural programs and the means by which these programs served as conduits for propaganda and public education. Throughout his career as the leader of the National Socialist Student's League, Reich Youth Leader, and Gauleiter of Vienna, Schirach promulgated a political theory which interpreted the rise of the Third Reich as an expression of an innately superior German culture. He put this theory forth through the use of artistic means, including his own poetry and prose, and theoretical exegeses of artistic and literary works that explained them within a fascist, totalitarian idiom. The dissertation discusses Schirach's personal adherence to Nazism and its roots; the ways in which he interpreted fascist philosophical tenets, symbols, messages, and archetypes; his concepts of youth and adult education; his attempts to mold the artistic community of Vienna into an aesthetically progressive, yet politically coherent, means of propaganda; and his role in the destruction of the ...
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Pursuit of Happiness: Struggling to Preserve Status Quo in Revolutionary Era Nova Scotia

Pursuit of Happiness: Struggling to Preserve Status Quo in Revolutionary Era Nova Scotia

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Date: August 2006
Creator: Langston, Paul D.
Description: Following the Glorious Revolution in 1688, the British North American colonies interpreted Parliament's success in removing arbitrary governmental practices and establishing a balanced government as a victory for local representative government. Within these colonies, merchants secured their influence in local government in order to protect their profits and trade networks. The New England merchants that resettled in Nova Scotia in the 1750s successfully established a local government founded upon their rights as British subjects. The attempt by the British government to centralize the imperial administration in 1763 and the perceived threat of reintroducing arbitrary rule by Parliament was a direct threat to the colonial governmental system. Although Nova Scotia chose loyalism in 1775-1776, this decision did not stem from isolation or a differing political philosophy. In fact, it was their cultural and political similarities that led Nova Scotia and New England to separate paths in 1776. Nova Scotia merchants controlling the Assembly were able to confront and defeat attempts that threatened their influence in local politics and on the local economy. With the threat to their authority defeated and new markets opening for the colony, the Nova Scotia merchant class was able to preserve the status quo in local government.
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Reckoning in the Redlands: the Texas Rangers’ Clean-up of San Augustine in 1935

Reckoning in the Redlands: the Texas Rangers’ Clean-up of San Augustine in 1935

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Date: December 2014
Creator: Ginn, Jody Edward
Description: The subject of this manuscript is the Texas Rangers “clean-up” of San Augustine, which was undertaken between late January 1935 until approximately July 1936 at the direction of then newly-elected Governor James V. Allred, in response to the local “troubles” that arose from an near decade long “crime wave.” Allred had been elected on a platform advocating dramatic reform of state law enforcement, and the success of the “clean-up” was heralded as validation of those reforms, which included the creation of – and the Rangers’ integration into – the Texas Department of Public Safety that same year. Despite such historic significance for the community of San Augustine, the state, and the Texas Rangers, no detailed account has ever been published. The few existing published accounts are terse, vague, and inadequate to address the relevant issues. They are often also overly reliant on limited oral accounts and substantially factually flawed, thereby rendering their interpretive analysis moot in regard to certain issues. Additionally, it is a period of San Augustine’s history that haunts that community to this day, particularly as a result of the wide-ranging myths that have taken hold in the absence of a thoroughly researched and documented published account. Concerns ...
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The Reformation-Era Church Courts of England: A Study of the Acta of the Archidiaconal and Consistory Court at Chester, 1540-1542

The Reformation-Era Church Courts of England: A Study of the Acta of the Archidiaconal and Consistory Court at Chester, 1540-1542

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Date: May 2000
Creator: Mitchener, Donald Keith
Description: Much work has been done over the last fifty years in the study of the English ecclesiastical courts. One court that thus far has escaped much significant scholarly attention, however, is the one located in Chester, England. The author analyzes the acta of that court in order to determine what types of cases were being heard during the years 1540-42. His analysis shows that the Chester court did not deviate significantly from the general legal and theological structure and function of Tudor church courts of the period.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries