The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 39, July 1935 - April, 1936

Book Reviews and Notices

work was planned to include twenty volumes, with a supplemen-
tary volume to be issued every ten years or so.
EUGENE C. BARKER.
Grand Prairie. By James K. Greer. (Dallas: Tardy Publish-
ing Company. 1935. Pp. (vii), 284. Price, $2.50.)
The ten chapter titles of this book, though attractive enough,
give little indication of the variety and interest of their contents:
"On the Grand Prairie," "Counting the Costs," "Social Condi-
tions in the Fifties," "Varmints and Pests," "Then Came the
War," "Tonkawa Trailers," "Reconstruction Years Bring
Changes," "Frontier Daughter," "Political Consciousness," "An
Era Passes." The Table of Contents should be expanded to give
a clearer and more comprehensive suggestion of the scope and
value of the book.
Professor Greer, who is head of the history department of
Howard University, Birmingham, Alabama, defines the geograph-
ical area of Grand Prairie as including ten or a dozen central
Texas counties, extending from Bell County in the south to Cooke
County in the north. Bosque County is, roughly, the center of
the area and receives the emphasis of the narrative. The book is
a thoroughly creditable example of social and economic history,
interesting enough to read for entertainment and definite enough
and sound enough to leave an unusually vivid impression of life
in those frontier counties during the forty years from 1850 to
1890.
Professor Greer happens to have been born and reared in the
area that he describes, though he was born much later than 1890.
The experiences and recollections of his parents; his publication
of Buck Barry, Texas Ranger and Frontiersman, 1845-1906; and
industrious and discriminating study of a variety of source ma-
terials; together with a somewhat unusual historical imagination
have enabled him to write a book that more pretentious social
historians might serve themselves by studying. Use of the first
personal pronoun, rare but not unknown to historical works, is
an aid to the narration of many homely, and singly insignificant,
details without which his picture would be much less vivid.

151

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 39, July 1935 - April, 1936. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101095/. Accessed September 15, 2014.