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

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

United States, Kerr considers the questions of management and supervi-
sion connected with foreign operations. Delinquent loans, foreclosures, and
anti-foreign sentiment in the western states were among the important
problems faced by company managers. Nevertheless, the author concludes
that the companies were successful and earned a good return on their in-
vestments. This resulted from carefully diversified loans on farm, subur-
ban, and urban lands. The secret of the Scot's success, according to Kerr,
was the practice of careful inspection and valuation of lands on which
loans were made.
The importance of Scottish and other foreign investment is the extent
to which it contributed to economic development in the United States.
Although Kerr provides figures on loans, we do not know how significant
these amounts were in the total investment of any particular area. It is
clear enough from this study that capital provided by the Scots was an
important factor in the economic growth of many local communities, but
just how important we do not know. If the amount of Scottish loans could
be compared to overall investment in a particular area we would then be
in a position to know more precisely the significance of Scottish invest-
ment. Other questions that might be investigated include how the Scottish
loans compared with other sources of funds in size of loan, interest rate,
and type of security demanded. More comparisons with different types
of lending agencies would give us a clearer picture of the Scottish con-
tribution.
Kerr has based his study on extensive research in original manuscripts.
From these sources he has given us new insights and a better understand-
ing of foreign investments in the United States in the late nineteenth cen-
tury. Economic historians will look forward to a second volume on this
subject which Kerr is presently writing.
University of Georgia GILBERT C. FITE
Mexico Views Manifest Destiny, 1821-1846. By Gene M. Brack. (Albu-
querque: University of New Mexico Press, 1976. Pp. vii+ I94. In-
troduction, sources, index. $12.)
This is a strikingly sensible approach not only to the origins of the
Mexican War but to understanding much else about Mexico in the second
quarter of the nineteenth century. The government, the political and mili-
tary leaders, and the problems they confronted are lucidly recreated.
Opinions of viewers of the contemporary scene are quoted and cited in
faithful fashion. But merely stating such truths fails to do justice to the

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 80, July 1976 - April, 1977. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101204/. Accessed July 10, 2014.