dueling to call into question the status Williams accords to it as a
southern practice. By representing the duel as something southerners
virtually took for granted, Williams misses much of the complexity
of a society in which duels occurred.
The result, finally, is an entertaining look at a southern social prac-
tice, but a study that lacks the significance of Williams's own earlier
work on crime and violence in the region.
University of California, Irvine DICKSON D. BRUCE, JR.
Tour Guide to Old Western Forts. By Herbert M. Hart. (Boulder:
Pruett Publishing Co., 198o0. Pp. vii+ 212. Illustrations, maps,
list of further reading. $22.50.)
In the American West military forts were outposts of civilization,
harbingers of change, and agents of empire. During the nineteenth
century over a thousand were established to protect the western fron-
tier. Of this number only ten still function as military installations.
Fort Bridger, Fort Phil Kearny, and a few other abandoned posts have
been restored and have become a part of the folklore of westward ex-
pansion, but most have decayed and been forgotten.
No one has done more to preserve the memory of these frontier out-
posts and the soldiers who served there than Colonel Herbert M. Hart,
the founder and national secretary of the Council of Abandoned Mili-
tary Posts, and the author of the four-volume series, Forts of the Old
West. Colonel Hart's latest contribution to the preservation of west-
ern military history is a Tour Guide to Old Western Forts. The work
deals with the period from 1804 to 1916 and encompasses a seventeen-
state region, from approximately the ninety-fifth meridian to the
Pacific. While most of the sites he describes were military establish-
ments, some of them, such as Bent's Fort and Fort Lisa, were estab-
lished and maintained by civilians.
The author, who has provided brief historical sketches of most of
the significant military outposts in his Forts of the Old West series,
makes no effort to duplicate his earlier works by including thumbnail
descriptions of the forts. Rather, his purpose in this book is to provide
directions for those interested in visiting the sites of old garrisons.
The single paragraph allotted to each post describes its significance
and provides instructions concerning its location. While most of the
directions are precise, a few have all the specificity of a corps com-
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 85, July 1981 - April, 1982. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101208/. Accessed November 26, 2014.