The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 81, July 1977 - April, 1978

Book Reviews

Epilogue (pp.. 244-254) might well have been blended into the earlier
pages. There are several errors, similar to these two: Anthony F. Lucas,
who brought in Spindletop, was born in 1855 (in Austria), not, as Run-
dell states (p. 35),,naturalized a U.S. citizen then. And it was the F. K.
Lathrop 4 1 in the East Texas field, not J. K. Lathrop (p. 225). Finally,
the dates in the title, 1866-1936, do not reflect the photographic record
which, for all practical purposes, begins in the 189os at Corsicana, as
Rundell acknowledges (p. 242).
Rundell, author of a brief annotated bibliography of Texas petro-
leum history in the Southwestern Historical Quarterly (October, 1963),
is to be commended for the perseverance and toil he surely put forth
to ferret out and collect these photographs. The Texas A&M Univer-
sity Press has produced this first number in The Montague History
of Oil Series with distinction and should be encouraged in its future
efforts in the field.
Texarkana, Texas JAMES PRESLEY
Swenson Saga and the SMS Ranches. By Mary Whatley Clarke. (Austin:
Jenkins Publishing Co., 1976. Pp. ix+346. Dedication, foreword,
photographs, bibliography; index. $12.50.)
This fascinating story of the Swenson family and its influence on cat-
tle ranching in Texas is the product of the research of Mary Whatley
Clarke, newspaperwoman, journalist, and author.
Svante Magnus Swenson, the original Swenson of this saga, was born
in Lattarp, Sweden, February 24, 1816. In 1838 he arrived penniless at
Galveston and became the first Swedish settler in Texas. Over the years
S. M. Swenson became a successful merchant, planter, banker, and
rancher, accumulating a fortune in land and other investments. He was
also influential in bringing thousands of Swedes to Texas.
Swenson began his successful business career as a merchant in La
Grange and later in Austin. Within a short time he was engaged in
banking and land investment. By 186o his landholdings included that
which formed the nucleus for the famous SMS ranches in West Texas.
Because of his opposition to secession Swenson became so unpopular
with the citizens of Austin that he fled to Mexico in 1863 where he
lived in exile until 1865. When he returned to Texas he moved his
family to New York City. In that metropolis he and his sons, Eric P.
and S. Albin, became prominent bankers and financiers.
In Texas, however, the Swenson family is best known for the SMS

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 81, July 1977 - April, 1978. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101205/. Accessed July 24, 2014.