The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 14, July 1910 - April, 1911

Texas Historical Association Quarterly.

BOOK REVIEWS AND NOTICES
Reconstruction in Texas. By Charles William Ramsdell. Pp.
324. New York: Columbia University. Longmans, Green &
Co., Agents. 1910.
Mr. Ramsdell's work on Reconstruction in Texas is number 95
of the well known series-"Studies in History, Economics and
Public Law"-made by students of the Columbia University School
of Political Science. For years the Department of History at
Columbia has been working, through its graduate students, in the
Reconstruction field and as a result several monographs on Recon-
struction have been published. This one on Texas is among the
best.
It is somewhat difficult to do anything really original or unex-
pected in the writing of the history of Reconstruction. The issues
and problems though immensely important were few and distinct.
Every actor moved in the lime-light of publicity. Consequently,
while the main outlines of Reconstruction have long been familiar,
the task of the investigator in this period is to make an accurate
statement of the facts, an account of local conditions, an estimate
of personalities. In doing so each researcher must to a certain
extent cover the same ground. So Mr. Ramsdell takes up first a
brief discussion of the events leading to secession and of the con-
tions that existed in Texas during the Civil War. Then follows an
account of the two attempts at Reconstruction--by the President
and by Congress-which cover the period from 1865 to 1870. A
short final chapter of twenty-five pages describes the Radical ad-
ministration from 1870 to 1874 when the Reconstruction experi-
ment ended in Texas. Within the period covered, 1865 to 1874,
the author deals minutely with political questions-the develop-
ment of the Conservative, Radical and Extreme Radical parties,
with problems of public order, race and labor, and the admi nistra-
tion of justice, with the relations between Texas and the Washing-
ton government, and between the military and the civil authorities
within the state.
The work is well done. The author's style is clear, his state-
ments temperate in tone. He has examined all accessible author-

Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 14, July 1910 - April, 1911. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101054/. Accessed July 30, 2015.