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The Year of Perfect Happiness

Description: The sharp-witted stories in Becky Adnot-Haynes' debut collection explore the secret lives of people—how they deal with the parts of themselves that they choose not to share with their closest confidants—and with the world. A pole-vaulter practices his sport only before dawn. A recently divorced woman signs up for a hallucinogenic drug excursion in the Arizona desert. An uncertain girlfriend goes out into the world wearing a false pregnancy belly. In The Year of Perfect Happiness, the universe is recognizable but slightly askew, a world whose corners can be peeled back to reveal the strange and often comic outcomes of acting out your most self-destructive desires. It is also a winner ofKatherine Anne Porter Prize in Short Fiction Series.
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Date: November 2014
Creator: Adnot-Haynes, Becky
Partner: UNT Press

The WPA Dallas Guide and History

Description: This book gives an overview of the city of Dallas, Texas including statistics about the people and businesses as well as background information regarding the government, businesses, and social aspects of the city. The book also gives information about tourism and points of interest in the city and in Dallas County. Index starts on page 421.
Date: 1992
Creator: Writers' Program of the Work Projects Administration in the City of Dallas
Partner: UNT Press

The Personal Correspondence of Sam Houston, Volume 1: 1839-1845

Description: This book is the first in a series of four volumes and contains collected correspondence to and from Sam Houston. According to information on the inside front cover, it includes letters "between Sam Houston and his wife, and their letters to other family members, family physicians, and close personal friends." The letters include footnotes that give clarification and context. The volume also has a bibliography, appendix, and index (which starts on page 377).
Date: 1996
Creator: Roberts, Madge Thornall
Partner: UNT Press

The Roy Bedichek Family Letters

Description: This book is a collection of letters written by Roy Bedichek and letters written to him from other family members. Annotations and notes about the letters have been added as footnotes. Biographical information based on interviews of family members as well as genealogical charts of the Bedichek and Greer families are also included. Index starts on page 447.
Date: 1998
Creator: Bedichek, Jane Gracy, 1918- & Bedichek, Roy, 1878-1959
Partner: UNT Press

Zen of the Plains: Experiencing Wild Western Places

Description: Although spare, sweeping landscapes may appear “empty,” plains and prairies afford a rich, unique aesthetic experience—one of quiet sunrises and dramatic storms, hidden treasures and abundant wildlife, infinite horizons and omnipresent wind, all worthy of contemplation and celebration. In this series of narratives, photographs, and hand-drawn maps, Tyra Olstad blends scholarly research with first-hand observation to explore topics such as wildness and wilderness, travel and tourism, preservation and conservation, expectations and acceptance, and even dreams and reality in the context of parks, prairies, and wild, open places. In so doing, she invites readers to reconsider the meaning of “emptiness” and ask larger, deeper questions such as: how do people experience the world? How do we shape places and how do places shape us? Above all, what does it mean to experience that exhilarating effect known as Zen of the plains?
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Date: May 2014
Creator: Olstad, Tyra A.
Partner: UNT Press

The Original Guitar Hero and the Power of Music: the Legendary Lonnie Johnson, Music, and Civil Rights

Description: Lonnie Johnson (1894–1970) was a virtuoso guitarist who influenced generations of musicians from Django Reinhardt to Eric Clapton to Bill Wyman and especially B. B. King. Born in New Orleans, he began playing violin and guitar in his father’s band at an early age. When most of his family was wiped out by the 1918 flu epidemic, he and his surviving brother moved to St. Louis, where he won a blues contest that included a recording contract. His career was launched. Johnson can be heard on many Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong records, including the latter’s famous “Savoy Blues” with the Hot Five. He is perhaps best known for his 12-string guitar solos and his ground-breaking recordings with the white guitarist Eddie Lang in the late 1920s. After World War II he began playing rhythm and blues and continued to record and tour until his death. This is the first full-length work on Johnson. Dean Alger answers many biographical mysteries, including how many members of Johnson’s large family were left after the epidemic. He also places Johnson and his musical contemporaries in the context of American race relations and argues for the importance of music in the fight for civil rights. Finally, Alger analyzes Johnson’s major recordings in terms of technique and style. Distribution of an accompanying music CD will be coordinated with the release of this book.
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Date: April 2014
Creator: Alger, Dean
Partner: UNT Press

The View From the Back of the Band: The Life and Music of Mel Lewis

Description: Mel Lewis (1929-1990) was born Melvin Sokoloff to Jewish Russian immigrants in Buffalo, New York. He first picked up his father’s drumsticks at the age of two and at 17 he was a full-time professional musician. The View from the Back of the Band is the first biography of this legendary jazz drummer. For over fifty years, Lewis provided the blueprint for how a drummer could subtly support any musical situation. While he made his name with Stan Kenton and Thad Jones, and with his band at the Village Vanguard, it was the hundreds of recordings that he made as a sideman and his ability to mentor young musicians that truly defined his career. Away from the drums, Lewis's passionate and outspoken personality made him one of jazz music's greatest characters. It is often through Lewis's own anecdotes, as well as many from the musicians who knew him best, that this book traces the career of one of the world’s greatest drummers. Previously unpublished interviews, personal memoirs, photos, musical transcriptions, and a selected discography add to this comprehensive biography.
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Date: October 2014
Creator: Smith, Chris
Partner: UNT Press

The Upshaws of County Line: An American Family

Description: Guss, Felix, and Jim Upshaw founded the community of County Line in the 1870s in northwest Nacogdoches County, in deep East Texas. As with hundreds of other relatively autonomous black communities created at that time, the Upshaws sought a safe place to raise their children and create a livelihood during Reconstruction and Jim Crow Texas. In the late 1980s photographer Richard Orton visited County Line for the first time and became aware of a world he did not know existed as a white man. He went down the rabbit hole, so to speak, and met some remarkable people there who changed his life. The more than 50 duotone photographs and text convey the contemporary experience of growing up in a "freedom colony." Covering a period of twenty-five years, photographer Richard Orton juxtaposes his images with text from people who grew up in and have remained connected to their birthplace. Thad Sitton's foreword sets the community in historical context and Roy Flukinger points out the beauty of the documentary photographs. This book should appeal to anyone interested in American or Texas history, particularly the history of African Americans in the South in the aftermath of the Civil War. The book should also be of interest to anyone with an appreciation for documentary photography, including students and teachers of photography.
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Date: November 2014
Creator: Orton, Richard S.; Sitton, Thad & Flukinger, Roy
Partner: UNT Press

Folktales from the Helotes Settlement

Description: The Texas Folklore Society has been publishing a regular volume of folklore research (our PTFS series) for the past several decades. Most of these books are what we call miscellanies, compilations of the works of multiple folklorists, and they feature articles on many types of lore. We’ve also published over twenty “Extra Books,” which are single-author manuscripts that examine a more focused topic. Folktales from the Helotes Settlement by John Igo is Extra Book #25. It’s a collection of personal memories from our longest active member, who first joined the Society over fifty years ago. Here we find legends, customs, and beliefs of the people of the Helotes Settlement near San Antonio. These stories capture the lore of a place similar to lots of other places—our places. They’re familiar to us all because, when we get right down to it, the Helotes Settlement is not very different from wherever we’re from.
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Date: December 2014
Creator: Igo, John
Partner: UNT Press

Fresh Ink: Behind the Scenes at a Major Metropolitan Newspaper

Description: This book describes the work done at the Dallas Morning News newspaper office by taking a "behind-the-scenes" approach to discuss story selection, journalistic decisions, staff contributions, and community reactions. Although the text focuses on the week from November 4-10, 1991, it also looks at the history of the Dallas Morning News and major accomplishments of the newspaper.
Date: 1995
Creator: Gelsanliter, David
Partner: UNT Press

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

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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Date: April 2014
Creator: Bagur, Jacques D.
Partner: UNT Press

Conducting Concerti: A Technical and Interpretive Guide

Description: This book examines 43 great concerti and discusses, in detail, the technical, aural, rehearsal, and intra-personal skills that are required for “effortless excellence.” Maestro Itkin wrote this book for conductors first encountering the concerto repertoire and for those wishing to improve their skills about this important, and often understudied, literature. Often misunderstood is the fact that both the physical technique and the score study process require a substantially different and more nuanced approach than with the major symphonic repertoire. In short, this is the book that Itkin wished had been available when he was a student and young professional.
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Date: 2014
Creator: Itkin, David
Partner: UNT Press

The Best American Newspaper Narratives of 2012

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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Date: May 2014
Creator: Getschow, George
Partner: UNT Press

Goodbye Gluten: Happy Healthy Delicious Eating with a Texas Twist

Description: There are many gluten-free cookbooks on the market, but none like Goodbye Gluten! Roughly one-third of people in the U.S. are either gluten intolerant or have celiac disease, and for these people, eating gluten can make them sick—very sick. The engaging team of Kim Stanford and Bill Backhaus represents both these audiences, and together they have developed over 200 flavorful and tempting recipes for all types of dishes, from appetizers to desserts. Goodbye Gluten is both a cookbook and shopping guide for people who do not want gluten in their diets and are tired of missing out on their favorite foods. In each recipe the authors use everyday brand names that can be found at your local grocery store, which means you no longer have to check labels to decipher if a product is gluten-free. Another appeal of the book is its use of Texas and Tex-Mex flavors to add a kick to what can be bland fare. Goodbye Gluten makes it easy to live the gluten-free lifestyle, because it is not just a diet, but a lifestyle. With 30 color photos of the completed dishes, even the most dedicated bread-lover will want to get into the kitchen and start cooking.
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Date: October 2014
Creator: Stanford, Kim & Backhaus, William Clyde
Partner: UNT Press

Bad Company and Burnt Powder: Justice and Injustice in the Old Southwest

Description: Bad Company and Burnt Powder is a collection of twelve stories of when things turned "Western" in the nineteenth-century Southwest. Each chapter deals with a different character or episode in the Wild West involving various lawmen, Texas Rangers, outlaws, feudists, vigilantes, lawyers, and judges. Covered herein are the stories of Cal Aten, John Hittson, the Millican boys, Gid Taylor and Jim and Tom Murphy, Alf Rushing, Bob Meldrum and Noah Wilkerson, P. C. Baird, Gus Chenowth, Jim Dunaway, John Kinney, Elbert Hanks and Boyd White, and Eddie Aten. Within these pages the reader will meet a nineteen-year-old Texas Ranger figuratively dying to shoot his gun. He does get to shoot at people, but soon realizes what he thought was a bargain exacted a steep price. Another tale is of an old-school cowman who shut down illicit traffic in stolen livestock that had existed for years on the Llano Estacado. He was tough, salty, and had no quarter for cow-thieves or sympathy for any mealy-mouthed politicians. He cleaned house, maybe not too nicely, but unarguably successful he was. Then there is the tale of an accomplished and unbeaten fugitive, well known and identified for murder of a Texas peace officer. But the Texas Rangers couldn't find him. County sheriffs wouldn't hold him. Slipping away from bounty hunters, he hit Owlhoot Trail.
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Date: July 2014
Creator: Alexander, Bob
Partner: UNT Press

The Horrell Wars: Feuding in Texas and New Mexico

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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Date: June 2014
Creator: Johnson, David
Partner: UNT Press

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

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 incontestable evidence that most of the claims that Jim Ferguson made during his life regarding his conduct, intentions, achievements, and abilities, were patently false.
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Date: 2014
Creator: Wilson, Carol O’Keefe
Partner: UNT Press

John Ringo, King of the Cowboys: His Life and Times From the Hoo Doo War to Tombstone

Description: Few names in the lore of western gunmen are as recognizable. Few lives of the most notorious are as little known. Romanticized and made legendary, John Ringo fought and killed for what he believed was right. As a teenager, Ringo was rushed into sudden adulthood when his father was killed tragically in the midst of the family's overland trek to California. As a young man he became embroiled in the blood feud turbulence of post-Reconstruction Texas. The Mason County “Hoo Doo” War in Texas began as a war over range rights, but it swiftly deteriorated into blood vengeance and spiraled out of control as the body count rose. In this charnel house Ringo gained a reputation as a dangerous gunfighter and man killer. He was proclaimed throughout the state as a daring leader, a desperate man, and a champion of the feud. Following incarceration for his role in the feud, Ringo was elected as a lawman in Mason County, the epicenter of the feud’s origin. The reputation he earned in Texas, further inflated by his willingness to shoot it out with Victorio’s raiders during a deadly confrontation in New Mexico, preceded him to Tombstone in territorial Arizona. Ringo became immersed in the area’s partisan politics and factionalized violence. A champion of the largely Democratic ranchers, Ringo would become known as a leader of one of these elements, the Cowboys. He ran at bloody, tragic odds with the Earp brothers and Doc Holliday, finally being part of the posse that hounded these fugitives from Arizona. In the end, Ringo died mysteriously in the Arizona desert, his death welcomed by some, mourned by others, wrongly claimed by a few. Initially published in 1996, John Ringo has been updated to a second edition with much new information researched and uncovered by David Johnson ...
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Date: June 15, 2008
Creator: Johnson, David
Partner: UNT Press

In the Permanent Collection: Poems

Description: Trying to make sense of a disordered world, Stefanie Wortman's debut collection examines works of art as varied as casts of antique sculpture, 19th-century novels, and even scenes from reality television to investigate the versions of order that they offer. These deft poems yield moments of surprising levity even as they mount a sharp critique of human folly.
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Date: 2014
Creator: Wortman, Stefanie
Partner: UNT Press