The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 31, July 1927 - April, 1928

Southwestern Ilistorical Quarterly

BOOK REVIEWS AND NOTICES
Francisco de Ibarra and Nueva Vizcaya. By J. Lloyd Mecham.
(Durham: Duke University Press. 1927. Pp. ix, 265.
$3.50.)
The last quarter of a century has seen the development of a
new approach to the study of the colonization of the North Ameri-
can continent. Alongside of, and complementary to the extensive
and intensive research into the progress of European civilization
westward from the Atlantic seaboard of what was later to become
the United States, there has appeared a realization that influences
other than English are to be found in parts of the country, and that
these influences advanced northward rather than westward. It has
long been recognized, of course, that at about the same time that
Jamestown was being established by the English, Santa F6 was
being founded by the Spaniards; but ordinarily there has been lit-
tle attempt to explain how and why one group of Europeans
happened to be planting its civilization in the heart of the con-
tinent just as another group was reaching its eastern shores. The
sensational careers and the spectacular events of the Spanish
conquest have received attention, with the result that Cortez and
Pizarro, De Soto and Coronado are familiar names. Between
Coronado's expedition and the founding of Santa Fe lies an interval
of more than half a century, during which there is every reason
to believe that Spanish authorities in New Spain were systemati-
cally laying the foundation for the occupation of this northern ter-
ritory. Being systematic, the work of this half-century has seemed
unattractive in comparison with other periods, and consequently
has remained unexploited so far as basic research is concerned.
This study of the career of Francisco de Ibarra as one of the agents
in building the necessary foundation is, therefore, real pioneer
work.
Marking, as it does, the initial venture into an unexplored field,
it represents a testimonial to the wisdom of the guide who sug-
gested the subject as well as to the courage of the man who under-
took the task. And it must stand as a task well done. Taking
as his subject a man who "is without doubt the least known and
his achievements the least appreciated" of the proprietary colonizers

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 31, July 1927 - April, 1928. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101088/. Accessed September 19, 2014.