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The Best American Newspaper Narratives, Volume 2

The Best American Newspaper Narratives, Volume 2

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Date: June 2015
Creator: Getschow, George
Description: This anthology collects the twelve winners of the 2013 Best American Newspaper Narrative Writing Contest, run by the Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference. The event is hosted by the Frank W. Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism at the University of North Texas. The contest honors exemplary narrative work and encourages narrative nonfiction storytelling at newspapers across the United States. First place winner: Eli Saslow, "Into the Lonely Quiet" (Washington Post), follows the family of a 7-year-old victim of the December 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut, six months after the shooting. Second place: Eric Moskowitz, "Marathon Carjacking" (Boston Globe), is the story of "Danny," who was carjacked by the suspects of the Boston Marathon bombing three days after the bombing. Third place: Mark Johnson, "The Course of Their Lives" (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel), an account of first-year medical students as they take a human dissection course. Runners-up include Christopher Goffard, "The Manhunt" (Los Angeles Times); Stephanie McCrummen, "Wait—You Described It as a Cloudy Feeling?" (Washington Post); Michael M. Phillips, "The Lobotomy Files" (Wall Street Journal); Aaron Applegate, "Taken Under" (Virginian-Pilot); Meg Kissinger, "A Mother, at Her Wits' End" (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel); Michael Kruse, "The Last Voyage of the ...
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The Notorious Luke Short: Sporting Man of the Wild West

The Notorious Luke Short: Sporting Man of the Wild West

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Date: June 2015
Creator: DeMattos, Jack & Parsons, Chuck
Description: Luke Short perfected his skills as a gambler in locations that included Leadville, Tombstone, Dodge City, and Fort Worth. In 1883, in what became known as the "Dodge City War," he banded together with Wyatt Earp, Bat Masterson, and others to protect his ownership interests in the Long Branch Saloon—an event commemorated by the famous "Dodge City Peace Commission" photograph. During his lifetime, Luke Short became one of the best known sporting men in the United States, and one of the wealthiest. The irony is that Luke Short is best remembered for being the winning gunfighter in two of the most celebrated showdowns in Old West history: the shootout with Charlie Storms in Tombstone, Arizona, and the showdown against Jim Courtright in Fort Worth, Texas. He would have hated that. The contents include: -The cowboy by birth -- Tall tales and short facts -- The gambler by choice -- Get out of Dodge! -- A plain statement & shots from Short -- The Dodge City peace commission -- The White Elephant in Panther City -- Sporting men of Fort Worth -- Dead man in a shooting gallery -- Mrs. Luke Short -- The war on the gambling fraternity -- State ...
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Death on Base: The Fort Hood Massacre

Death on Base: The Fort Hood Massacre

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Date: May 2015
Creator: Porterfield, Anita Belles
Description: When Army psychiatrist Nidal Hasan walked into the Fort Hood Soldier Readiness Processing Center and opened fire on soldiers within, he perpetrated the worst mass shooting on a United States military base in our country’s history. Death on Base is an in-depth look at the events surrounding the tragic mass murder that took place on November 5, 2009, and an investigation into the causes and influences that factored into the attack. The story begins with Hasan's early life in Virginia, continues with his time at Fort Hood, Texas, covers the events of the shooting, and concludes with his trial. The authors analyze Hasan's connections to radical Muslim cleric Anwar al-Awlaki and Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and demonstrate how radical Islam fueled Hasan’s hatred of both the American military and the soldiers he treated. Hasan's mass shooting is compared with others, such as George Hennard's shooting rampage at Luby's in Killeen in 1991, Charles Whitman at the University of Texas, and Virginia Tech shooter Seung-Hui Cho. The authors explore the strange paradox that the shooting at Fort Hood was classified as workplace violence rather than a terrorist act. This classification has major implications for the victims of the ...
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Making JFK Matter: Popular Memory and the 35th President

Making JFK Matter: Popular Memory and the 35th President

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Date: May 2015
Creator: Cruz, Paul H. Santa
Description: In Making JFK Matter, Paul Santa Cruz examines how popular memory of John F. Kennedy has been used politically by various interest groups, primarily the city of Dallas, Lyndon Johnson, and Robert Kennedy, as well as how the memory of Kennedy has been portrayed in various museums. Santa Cruz argues that we have memorialized JFK not simply out of love for him or admiration for the ideals he embodied, but because invoking his name carries legitimacy and power. Memory can be employed to accomplish particular ends: for example, the passage of long overdue civil rights legislation, or even successfully running for political office. Santa Cruz demonstrates the presence and use of popular memory in an extensive analysis of what was being said, and by whom, about the late president through White House memoranda and speech material, museum exhibits (such as the Sixth Floor Museum in Dallas and the JFK Presidential Library and Museum in Boston), public correspondence, newspapers and periodicals of the time, memoirs, and archival research. He also explores how JFK has been memorialized in films such as Bobby, JFK, and Thirteen Days. Written in an accessible manner to appeal to both historians and the general public, Making JFK ...
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Katherine Anne Porter’s Ship of Fools: New Interpretations and Transatlantic Contexts

Katherine Anne Porter’s Ship of Fools: New Interpretations and Transatlantic Contexts

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Date: April 2015
Creator: Austenfeld, Thomas
Description: Containing pieces by distinguished scholars including Darlene Harbour Unrue and Robert Brinkmeyer, this book is the first full investigation of the links between Porter’s only novel and European intellectual history. Beginning with Sebastian Brant, author of the late medieval Narrenschiff, whom she acknowledges in her Preface to Ship of Fools, Porter's image of Europe emerges as more complex, more knowledgeable, and more politically nuanced than previous critics have acknowledged. Ship of Fools is in conversation with Europe's humanistic tradition as well as with the political moments of 1931 and 1962, the years that elapsed from the novel's conception to its completion. The contents include: New contexts for Katherine Anne Porter's Ship of fools / Thomas Austenfeld -- Fools and folly in Erasmus and Porter / Jewel Spears Brooker -- "After all, what is this life itself?": humanist contexts of death and immortality in Katherine Anne Porter's Ship of fools / Dimiter Daphinoff -- Paratexts and the rhetorical factor in literature: Sebastian Brant and Katherine Anne Porter / Joachim Knape --.
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Other Psalms

Other Psalms

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Date: April 2015
Creator: Windholz, Jordan
Description: In his debut collection, Jordan Windholz recasts devotional poetics and traces the line between faith and its loss. Other Psalms gives voice to the skeptic who yet sings to the silence that "swells with the noise of listening." If faith is necessary, this collection suggests, it is necessary as material for its own unmaking. Without a doubt, these are poems worth believing in, announcing, as they do, a new and necessary voice in American poetry. The contents include: Parable -- Myth -- ( psalm ) -- A necessary angel recalls unearthing its terrestrial existence -- The psalm's parable -- Epiphany -- The nomads -- The incarnation -- Of apocalypse -- A prayer -- ( psalm ) -- Gospel -- Ruminant -- The parable's psalm -- ( psalm ) -- Hymn -- Fable -- Intercessory -- Evangel -- Other psalms -- The same old story -- The transfiguration -- The talk -- Bestiary -- The shepherd's song -- Of revelation -- Psalm, stunted -- The heretic.
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Return of the Gar

Return of the Gar

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Date: March 2015
Creator: Spitzer, Mark
Description: In Return of the Gar, Mark Spitzer, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services researcher Lindsey Lewis, and University of Central Arkansas biologist discusses the often misunderstood alligator gar.The alligator gar belongs to a family of fish that has remained fundamentally unchanged since the Cretaceous, over 100 million years ago. Its intimidating size and plethora of teeth have made it demonized throughout its range in North America, resulting in needless killing. Massive oil spills in its breeding range have not helped its population either. Interspersing science, folklore, history, and action-packed fishing narratives, Spitzer's empathy for and fascination with this air-breathing, armored fish provides for an entertaining odyssey that examines management efforts to preserve and propagate the alligator gar in the United States. Spitzer also travels to Central America, Thailand, and Mexico to assess the global gar situation. He reflects on what is and isn't working in compromised environments, then makes a case for conservation based on personal experience and a love for wildness for its own sake. This colorful portrait of the alligator gar can serve as a metaphor and measurement for the future of our biodiversity during a time of planetary crisis. The contents include: Introduction -- The gar returns -- ...
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Six-Shooters and Shifting Sands: The Wild West Life of Texas Ranger Captain Frank Jones

Six-Shooters and Shifting Sands: The Wild West Life of Texas Ranger Captain Frank Jones

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Date: March 2015
Creator: Alexander, Bob
Description: Many well-read students, historians, and loyal aficionados of Texas Ranger lore know the name of Texas Ranger Captain Frank Jones (1856-1893), who died on the Texas-Mexico border in a shootout with Mexican rustlers. In Six-Shooters and Shifting Sands, Bob Alexander has now penned the first full-length biography of this important nineteenth-century Texas Ranger. At an early age Frank Jones, a native Texan, would become a Frontier Battalion era Ranger. His enlistment with the Rangers coincided with their transition from Indian fighters to lawmen. While serving in the Frontier Battalion officers' corps of Company D, Frank Jones supervised three of the four “great” captains of that era: J.A. Brooks, John H. Rogers, and John R. Hughes. Besides Austin Ira Aten and his younger brothers Calvin Grant Aten and Edwin Dunlap Aten, Captain Jones also managed law enforcement activities of numerous other noteworthy Rangers, such as Philip Cuney "P.C." Baird, Benjamin Dennis Lindsey, Bazzell Lamar "Baz" Outlaw, J. Walter Durbin, Jim King, Frank Schmid, and Charley Fusselman, to name just a few. Frank Jones’ law enforcing life was anything but boring. Not only would he find himself dodging bullets and returning fire, but those Rangers under his supervision would also experience gunplay. ...
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The Horrell Wars: Feuding in Texas and New Mexico

The Horrell Wars: Feuding in Texas and New Mexico

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Date: June 2014
Creator: Johnson, David
Description: For decades the Horrell brothers of Lampasas, Texas, have been portrayed as ruthless killers and outlaws, but author David Johnson paints a different picture of these controversial men. The Horrells were ranchers, but some thought that they built their herds by rustling. Their initial confrontation with the State Police at Lampasas in 1873 marked the most disastrous shootout in Reconstruction history. The brothers and loyal friends then fled to New Mexico, where they became entangled in what would later evolve into the violent Lincoln County War. The brothers returned to Texas, where in time they became involved in the Horrell-Higgins War. The family was nearly wiped out following the feud when two of the brothers were killed by a mob. Only one member of the family, Sam, Jr., lived to old age and died of natural causes.
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The Best American Newspaper Narratives of 2012

The Best American Newspaper Narratives of 2012

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Date: May 2014
Creator: Getschow, George
Description: This anthology collects the ten winners of the 2012 Best American Newspaper Narrative Writing Contest at the Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference, which is hosted by the Frank W. Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism at the University of North Texas. The contest honors exemplary narrative work and encourages narrative nonfiction storytelling at newspapers across the United States.
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Captain W.W. Withenbury's 1838-1842 Red River Reminiscences

Captain W.W. Withenbury's 1838-1842 Red River Reminiscences

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Date: April 2014
Creator: Bagur, Jacques D.
Description: A selection of letters written to the Cincinnati Commercial newspaper from 1870-1871 about steamboat travel on the Red River in 1838-1841. W. W. Withenbury was a famous river boat captain during the mid-1800s. In retirement, he wrote a series of letters for the Cincinnati Commercial, under the title "Red River Reminiscences." Jacques Bagur has selected and annotated 39 letters describing three steamboat voyages on the upper Red River from 1838 to 1842. Withenbury was a master of character and incident, and his profiles of persons, including three signers of the Texas Declaration of Independence, reflect years of acquaintance. The beauty of his writing ranks this among the best of the reminiscences that were written as the steamboat era was declining. “Bagur is an expert on the Red River in the nineteenth century, and it shows in this work. Informative and entertaining.” —Randolph B. "Mike" Campbell, author of Gone to Texas: A History of the Lone Star State “This will rank as a great assistance to researchers if anyone wants to attack history of the Red River again. Some of his in-depth research was fabulous.”—Skipper Steely, author of Red River Pioneers
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In the Governor’s Shadow: the True Story of Ma and Pa Ferguson

In the Governor’s Shadow: the True Story of Ma and Pa Ferguson

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Date: 2014
Creator: Wilson, Carol O’Keefe
Description: In 1915 Governor James Ferguson began his term in Texas bolstered by a wave of voter enthusiasm and legislative cooperation so great that few Texans anticipated anything short of a successful administration. His campaign was based on two key elements: his appeal to the rural constituency and a temporary hiatus from the effects of the continuous Prohibition debate. In reality, Jim Ferguson had shrewdly sold a well-crafted image of himself to Texas voters, carrying into office a bevy of closely guarded secrets about his personal finances, his business acumen, and his relationship with Texas brewers. Those secrets, once unraveled, ultimately led to charges brought against Governor Ferguson via impeachment. Refusing to acknowledge the judgment against him, Ferguson launched a crusade for regained power and vindication. In 1925 he reclaimed a level of political influence and doubled the Ferguson presence in Austin when he assisted his wife, Miriam, in a successful bid for the governorship. That bid had been based largely on a plea for exoneration but soon degenerated into a scandal-plagued administration. In the Governor’s Shadow unravels this complex tale, exposing the shocking depth of the Fergusons’ misconduct. Often using the Fergusons’ own words, Carol O’Keefe Wilson weaves together the ...
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Three Decades of Engendering History: Selected Works of Antonia I. Castañeda

Three Decades of Engendering History: Selected Works of Antonia I. Castañeda

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Date: 2014
Creator: Heidenreich, Linda; Castañeda, Antonia I.; Gordillo, Luz María & González, Deena J.
Description: Three Decades of Engendering History collects ten of Antonia I. Castañeda's best articles, including the widely circulated article "Engendering the History of Alta California, 1769-1848," in which Castañeda took a direct and honest look at sex and gender relations in colonial California, exposing stories of violence against women as well as stories of survival and resistance. Other articles included are the prize-winning "Women of Color and the Rewriting of Western History," and two recent articles, "Lullabies y Canciones de Cuna" and "La Despedida." The latter two represent Castañeda’s most recent work excavating, mapping, and bringing forth the long and strong post-WWII history of Tejanas. Finally, the volume includes three interviews with Antonia Castañeda that contribute the important narrative of her lived experience—the "theory in the flesh" and politics of necessity that fueled her commitment to transformative scholarship that highlights gender and Chicanas as a legitimate line of inquiry.
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Tracking the Texas Rangers: The Twentieth Century

Tracking the Texas Rangers: The Twentieth Century

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Date: September 15, 2013
Creator: Glasrud, Bruce A. & Weiss, Harold J. Jr.
Description: Tracking the Texas Rangers: The Twentieth Century is an anthology of fifteen previously published articles and chapter excerpts covering key topics of the Texas Rangers during the twentieth century. The task of determining the role of the Rangers as the state evolved and what they actually accomplished for the benefit of the state is a difficult challenge. The actions of the Rangers fit no easy description. There is a dark side to the story of the Rangers; during the Mexican Revolution, for example, some murdered with impunity. Others sought to restore order in the border communities as well as in the remainder of Texas. It is not lack of interest that complicates the unveiling of the mythical force. With the possible exception of the Alamo, probably more has been written about the Texas Rangers than any other aspect of Texas history. Tracking the Texas Rangers covers leaders such as Captains Bill McDonald, “Lone Wolf” Gonzaullas, and Barry Caver, accomplished Rangers like Joaquin Jackson and Arthur Hill, and the use of Rangers in the Mexican Revolution. Chapters discuss their role in the oil fields, in riots, and in capturing outlaws. Most important, the Rangers of the twentieth century experienced changes in ...
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A Lawless Breed: John Wesley Hardin, Texas Reconstruction, and Violence in the Wild West

A Lawless Breed: John Wesley Hardin, Texas Reconstruction, and Violence in the Wild West

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Date: June 15, 2013
Creator: Parsons, Chuck & Brown, Norman Wayne
Description: John Wesley Hardin! His name spread terror in much of Texas in the years following the Civil War as the most wanted fugitive with a $4000 reward on his head. A Texas Ranger wrote that he killed men just to see them kick. Hardin began his killing career in the late 1860s and remained a wanted man until his capture in 1877 by Texas Rangers and Florida law officials. He certainly killed twenty men; some credited him with killing forty or more. After sixteen years in Huntsville prison he was pardoned by Governor Hogg. For a short while he avoided trouble and roamed westward, eventually establishing a home of sorts in wild and woolly El Paso as an attorney. He became embroiled in the dark side of that city and eventually lost his final gunfight to an El Paso constable, John Selman. Hardin was forty-two years old. Besides his reputation as the deadliest man with a six-gun, he left an autobiography in which he detailed many of the troubles of his life. In A Lawless Breed, Chuck Parsons and Norman Wayne Brown have meticulously examined his claims against available records to determine how much of his life story is true, ...
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Riding Lucifer's Line: Ranger Deaths Along the Texas-mexico Border

Riding Lucifer's Line: Ranger Deaths Along the Texas-mexico Border

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Date: May 15, 2013
Creator: Alexander, Bob
Description: The Texas-Mexico border is trouble. Haphazardly splashing across the meandering Rio Grande into Mexico is—or at least can be—risky business, hazardous to one’s health and well-being. Kirby W. Dendy, the Chief of Texas Rangers, corroborates the sobering reality: “As their predecessors for over one hundred forty years before them did, today’s Texas Rangers continue to battle violence and transnational criminals along the Texas-Mexico border.” In Riding Lucifer’s Line, Bob Alexander, in his characteristic storytelling style, surveys the personal tragedies of twenty-five Texas Rangers who made the ultimate sacrifice as they scouted and enforced laws throughout borderland counties adjacent to the Rio Grande. The timeframe commences in 1874 with formation of the Frontier Battalion, which is when the Texas Rangers were actually institutionalized as a law enforcing entity, and concludes with the last known Texas Ranger death along the border in 1921. Alexander also discusses the transition of the Rangers in two introductory sections: “The Frontier Battalion Era, 1874-1901” and “The Ranger Force Era, 1901-1935,” wherein he follows Texas Rangers moving from an epochal narrative of the Old West to more modern, technological times. Written absent a preprogrammed agenda, Riding Lucifer’s Line is legitimate history. Adhering to facts, the author is ...
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This Corner of Canaan: Essays on Texas in Honor of Randolph B. Campbell

This Corner of Canaan: Essays on Texas in Honor of Randolph B. Campbell

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Date: February 15, 2013
Creator: McCaslin, Richard B.; Chipman, Donald E. & Torget, Andrew J.
Description: Randolph B. “Mike” Campbell has spent the better part of the last five decades helping Texans rediscover their history, producing a stream of definitive works on the social, political, and economic structures of the Texas past. Through meticulous research and terrific prose, Campbell’s collective work has fundamentally remade how historians understand Texan identity and the state’s southern heritage, as well as our understanding of such contentious issues as slavery, westward expansion, and Reconstruction. Campbell’s pioneering work in local and county records has defined the model for grassroots research and community studies in the field. More than any other scholar, Campbell has shaped our modern understanding of Texas. In this collection of seventeen original essays, Campbell’s colleagues, friends, and students offer a capacious examination of Texas’s history—ranging from the Spanish era through the 1960s War on Poverty—to honor Campbell’s deep influence on the field. Focusing on themes and methods that Campbell pioneered, the essays debate Texas identity, the creation of nineteenth-century Texas, the legacies of the Civil War and Reconstruction, and the remaking of the Lone Star State during the twentieth century. Featuring some of the most well-known names in the field—as well as rising stars—the volume offers the latest scholarship ...
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First Timers and Old Timers: the Texas Folklore Society Fire Burns On

First Timers and Old Timers: the Texas Folklore Society Fire Burns On

Date: December 15, 2012
Creator: Untiedt, Kenneth L.
Description: The Texas Folklore Society has been alive and kicking for over one hundred years now, and I don’t really think there’s any mystery as to what keeps the organization going strong. The secret to our longevity is simply the constant replenishment of our body of contributors. We are especially fortunate in recent years to have had papers given at our annual meetings by new members—young members, many of whom are college or even high school students. These presentations are oftentimes given during sessions right alongside some of our oldest members. We’ve also had long-time members who’ve been around for years but had never yet given papers; thankfully, they finally took the opportunity to present their research, fulfilling the mission of the TFS: to collect, preserve, and present the lore of Texas and the Southwest. You’ll find in this book some of the best articles from those presentations. The first fruits of our youngest or newest members include Acayla Haile on the folklore of plants. Familiar and well-respected names like J. Rhett Rushing and Kenneth W. Davis discuss folklore about monsters and the classic “widow’s revenge” tale. These works—and the people who produced them—represent the secret behind the history of the ...
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Houston Blue: The Story of the Houston Police Department

Houston Blue: The Story of the Houston Police Department

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Date: November 15, 2012
Creator: Roth, Mitchel P.
Description: Houston Blue offers the first comprehensive history of one of the nation’s largest police forces, the Houston Police Department. Through extensive archival research and more than one hundred interviews with prominent Houston police figures, politicians, news reporters, attorneys, and others, authors Mitchel P. Roth and Tom Kennedy chronicle the development of policing in the Bayou City from its days as a grimy trading post in the 1830s to its current status as the nation’s fourth largest city. Prominent historical figures who have brushed shoulders with Houston’s Finest over the past 175 years include Houdini, Teddy Roosevelt and his Rough Riders, O. Henry, former Texas Ranger Frank Hamer, hatchet wielding temperance leader Carrie Nation, the Hilton Siamese Twins, blues musician Leadbelly, oilman Silver Dollar Jim West, and many others. The Houston Police Department was one of the first cities in the South to adopt fingerprinting as an identification system and use the polygraph test, and under the leadership of its first African American police chief, Lee Brown, put the theory of neighborhood oriented policing into practice in the 1980s. The force has been embroiled in controversy and high profile criminal cases as well. Among the cases chronicled in the book are ...
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Tracking the Texas Rangers: the Nineteenth Century

Tracking the Texas Rangers: the Nineteenth Century

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Date: September 15, 2012
Creator: Glasrud, Bruce A.
Description: Tracking the Texas Rangers is an anthology of sixteen previously published articles, arranged in chronological history, covering key topics of the intrepid and sometimes controversial law officers named the Texas Rangers. Determining the role of the Rangers as the state evolved and what they actually accomplished for the benefit of the state is a difficult challenge—the actions of the Rangers fit no easy description. There is a dark side to the story of the Rangers; during the war with Mexico, for example, some murdered, pillaged, and raped. Yet these same Rangers eased the resultant United States victory. Even their beginning and the first use of the term “Texas Ranger” have mixed and complex origins. Tracking the Texas Rangers covers topics such as their early years, the great Comanche Raid of 1840, and the effective use of Colt revolvers. Article authors discuss Los Diablos Tejanos, Rip Ford, the Cortina War, the use of Hispanic Rangers and Rangers in labor disputes, and the recapture of Cynthia Ann Parker and the capture of John Wesley Hardin. The selections cover critical aspects of those experiences—organization, leadership, cultural implications, rural and urban life, and violence. In their introduction, editors Bruce A. Glasrud and Harold J. ...
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Women and the Texas Revolution

Women and the Texas Revolution

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Date: September 15, 2012
Creator: Scheer, Mary L.
Description: While there is wide scholarship on the Texas Revolution, there is no comparable volume on the role of women during that conflict. Most of the many works on the Texas Revolution include women briefly in the narrative, such as Emily Austin, Suzanna Dickinson, and Emily Morgan West (the Yellow Rose), but not as principal participants. Women and the Texas Revolution explores these women in much more depth, in addition to covering the women and children who fled Santa Anna’s troops in the Runaway Scrape, and examining the roles and issues facing Native American, Black, and Hispanic women of the time. Like the American Revolution, women’s experiences in the Texas Revolution varied tremendously by class, religion, race, and region. While the majority of immigrants into Texas in the 1820s and 1830s were men, many were women who accompanied their husbands and families or, in some instances, braved the dangers and the hardships of the frontier alone. Black, Hispanic, and Native American women were also present in Mexican Texas. Whether Mexican loyalist or Texas patriot, elite planter or subsistence farm wife, slaveholder or slave, Anglo or black, women helped settle the Texas frontier and experienced the uncertainty, hardships, successes, and sorrows of ...
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Antebellum Jefferson, Texas: Everyday Life in an East Texas Town

Antebellum Jefferson, Texas: Everyday Life in an East Texas Town

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Date: March 15, 2012
Creator: Bagur, Jacques D.
Description: Founded in 1845 as a steamboat port at the entryway to western markets from the Red River, Jefferson was a thriving center of trade until the steamboat traffic dried up in the 1870s. During its heyday, the town monopolized the shipping of cotton from all points west for 150 miles. Jefferson was the unofficial capital of East Texas, but it was also typical of boom towns in general. For this topical examination of a frontier town, Bagur draws from many government documents, but also from newspaper ads and plats. These sources provide intimate details of the lives of the early citizens of Jefferson, Texas. Their story is of interest to both local and state historians as well as to the many readers interested in capturing the flavor of life in old-time East Texas. “Astoundingly complete and a model for local history research, with appeal far beyond readers who have specific interests in Jefferson.”—Fred Tarpley, author of Jefferson: Riverport to the Southwest
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Still the Arena of Civil War: Violence and Turmoil in Reconstruction Texas, 1865/1874

Still the Arena of Civil War: Violence and Turmoil in Reconstruction Texas, 1865/1874

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Date: March 15, 2012
Creator: Howell, Kenneth W.
Description: Following the Civil War, the United States was fully engaged in a bloody conflict with ex-Confederates, conservative Democrats, and members of organized terrorist groups, such as the Ku Klux Klan, for control of the southern states. Texas became one of the earliest battleground states in the War of Reconstruction. Throughout this era, white Texans claimed that Radical Republicans in Congress were attempting to dominate their state through “Negro-Carpetbag-Scalawag rule.” In response to these perceived threats, whites initiated a violent guerilla war that was designed to limit support for the Republican Party. They targeted loyal Unionists throughout the South, especially African Americans who represented the largest block of Republican voters in the region. Was the Reconstruction era in the Lone Star State simply a continuation of the Civil War? Evidence presented by sixteen contributors in this new anthology, edited by Kenneth W. Howell, argues that this indeed was the case. Topics include the role of the Freedmen’s Bureau and the occupying army, focusing on both sides of the violence. Several contributors analyze the origins of the Ku Klux Klan and its operations in Texas, how the Texas State Police attempted to quell the violence, and Tejano adjustment to Reconstruction. Other chapters ...
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Charreada: Mexican Rodeo in Texas

Charreada: Mexican Rodeo in Texas

Date: 2012
Creator: Hambric, Julia; Woolley, Bryan; Abernethy, Francis Edward & Rendon, Al
Description: El Charro, or man on horseback, has represented the spirit of independent Mexico since he played an important role in the 1821 revolution. He is the Mexican version of the American cowboy, only much older, arising from the ranch culture first brought to Mexico by the Spanish. The Charreada is his rodeo, his opportunity to show off both his skills with rope and horse and his decorative, elegant costume. It is at the center of Mexican heritage and self-image, a source of mythology and genuine heroes that has been brought to Texas by immigrants. And since 1989, it has included women, charras, who participate in elaborate and difficult riding formations.
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