The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 57, July 1953 - April, 1954

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

the years ahead scholars will use it because it is a masterpiece
done by men of the last generation that had the opportunity to
know firsthand even a few Comanche Indians whose thinking
and way of life had not been shaped along the white man's road.
Surely others will continue to read it because of its clear pres-
entation of a delightfully interesting subject.
RUPERT N. RICHARDSON
Hardin-Simmons University
The Typical Texan: Biography of an American Myth. By Joseph
Leach. Dallas (Southern Methodist University Press), 1952.
Pp. xiii + 178. Illustrations, bibliography, and index. $5.00.
It is commonly felt by many persons that the Texans are a
strange breed of men. With such a viewpoint this reviewer, him-
self born and bred in the Lone Star State, is inclined to agree.
For though Texas is a world in itself composed of many regions
quite unlike in topography, climate, and the economic basis of
society, there is to be found in the people of these various areas
a certain basic quality which is well nigh universal. In many re-
spects they are a race rather than citizens of a state of the Union.
This wholly delightful book seeks to explain why Texans are
as they are and to give the life-ways of the people who were the
earlier settlers of this region, as revealed in the accounts of early
visitors, or in literature, and on the stage and screen. The volume
tells much of such early Texas heroes as Davy Crockett, Sam
Houston, Jim Bowie, Big-Foot Wallace, Jack Hays, and a number
of others. Most of these, and the many others whose names bright-
en the pages of early Texas history, originated outside the far-
flung border of 'Texas. Most of them came from Kentucky, Ten-
nessee, Missouri, Louisiana, or some other frontier state. There
they had grown to manhood among pioneers who held their
lands with their long rifles and in the process developed those
traits of initiative, hardihood, and daring so necessary in this new
land of Texas, which merely afforded them a larger stage upon
which to play a part rehearsed again and again on these earlier
frontiers.
Independent and individualistic as were these early Texans
the necessity for defense against the fierce Comanches and raiding
Mexicans forced them to cooperate with one another for mutual

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 57, July 1953 - April, 1954. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101152/. Accessed April 20, 2014.