The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 83, July 1979 - April, 1980

Book Reviews

the result being an extremely interesting and informative story. For
instance, Perkins was especially insightful concerning what he called
"the Chinese invasion." In an easy-flowing style he explained techniques
that these aliens used to avoid detection by the immigration inspectors
as well as the methods employed by American officials to prevent illegal
entries. He has also reminisced about the effect of the Mexican Revo-
lution on Juirez (on the Rio Grande just south of El Paso), which was
"the scene of some heavy fighting" (p. 32). Specifically his contact with
Pancho Villa, who tried unsuccessfully to enlist him as a munitions
buyer for the Villistas, was an exciting adventure. Then during the
prohibition era he and his border patrolmen experienced numerous
encounters with bootleggers who were "inclined to fight" (p. 83). As a
result many American officers as well as smugglers were killed in bloody
encounters.
This work is a welcome addition to the annals of law enforcement
along the Mexican border. Perkins had an interesting career; but
equally important he tells a fascinating story which gives the reader
both understanding and insight. And because Sonnichsen deleted cer-
tain personal reminiscences which would have concerned only family
members, Border Patrol is an important narrative of one man's ex-
periences.
Texas Christian University BEN H. PROCTER
The Black Towns. By Norman L. Crockett. (Lawrence: Regents Press
of Kansas, 1979. Pp. xv+244. Preface, illustrations, maps, bibliog-
raphy, index. $14.)
This is the first book-length historical account of the post-Civil War
black towns. Crockett does not attempt to discuss or even list all of the
communities. Instead he selects for analysis five "typical" towns: Nico-
demus, Kansas; Mound Bayou, Mississippi; and Langston, Clearview,
and Boley, Oklahoma, all founded between 1879 and 1904.
Land speculators founded the towns to advance themselves economi-
cally and to provide opportunities for others. The settlers sought eco-
nomic advancement and freedom from racial discrimination. The au-
thor believes the black towns differed from other communities because
their settlers came in groups from the same areas, merchants and profes-
sional people arrived with-rather than after-the farmers, and many
farmers lived within the towns. The black communities, like other small
towns, emphasized morality and order, and became more peaceful than

201

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 83, July 1979 - April, 1980. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101207/. Accessed December 25, 2014.