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The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 80, July 1976 - April, 1977

Book Reviews

modern buffalo (p. I21). The Picuris Indians living with the Cuartelejo
Apaches did not ask to return to their pueblo because of Comanche raids
on El Cuartelejo (p. 138). They wanted to go home, for one thing, and
they had to work too hard, they thought, among the Apaches. It was at a
rancheria which Juan de Ulibarri called Santo Domingo that most of
the Picuris Indians were living, and there, also, that Ulibarri took pos-
session in the name of the king. Terrell (pp. 144-145) changes the place
to the Ojo de Santa Rita. If Terrell had read Alfred B. Thomas, whom
he cites occasionally, he would have known that the threat of war with
France, and perhaps England, caused the viceroy of New Spain to order
what has become known as the Villasur Expedition. If he had read
Jack D. Forbes, whom he also cites, he would have known that the ac-
count of New Mexico by Fray Juan Amando Niel is totally unreliable.
Given these and other misrepresentations of sources, the reader might
well wonder whether Terrell did not write the book first and then tack on
the notes and bibliography.
Northern Illinois University DELORES G. GUNNERSON
Drama and Conflict: The Texas Saga of 1776. By Robert S. Weddle and
Robert H. Thonhoff. (Austin: Madrona Press, 1976. Pp. x+210.
Illustrations, maps, bibliographical notes, index. $12.95.)
Those who signed the Declaration of Independence in Philadalphia had
no time to think of European settlements in the Rio Grande country made
even earlier than those in Virginia and Massachusetts, or of conflicts with
foreign rule that might be brewing there. Likewise, lack of communication
kept the Spaniards in Texas from more than a vague awareness of the re-
volt in the British colonies on the Atlantic seaboard, although they were
apprehensive of the French in Louisiana and of those English seamen who
occasionally landed on the Gulf coast.
Yet the Spanish colonists were having troubles, too. In 1776 their woes
stemmed mainly from the hostility of the Indians whom their missionaries
were trying to convert and civilize. The Comanches and Apaches, ac-
customed to a free and nomadic life on the plains, did not take to either
confinement or farming. Often they had to be locked in the missions at
night to keep them from escaping. But escape many of them did-to come
back with French firearms to attack the Spaniards.
An inclusive survey of Texas in 1776 comes in Drama and Conflict, by
two prize-winning historians, Robert S. Weddle and Robert H. Thonhoff.
Spanish officials, they show, tried to bolster the thin northern frontier


Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 80, July 1976 - April, 1977. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. Accessed May 3, 2016.

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