The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 92, July 1988 - April, 1989

Book Reviews

without assistance of electronic gadgetry, the printed outcome becomes
even more remarkable. The manuscript that comprised the substance
of his trans-Atlantic research, however, remained unpublished because
Aurelio concentrated on other projects that were closer to completion.
Now, thanks to the perseverance and dedication of his son, noted histo-
rian J. Manuel Espinosa, that elusive manuscript has been edited and
published.
To provide the reader with perspective, the editor divided the book's
contents into two unequal parts, with the introductory section devoted
to a biographical essay and supporting chapters on Aurelio's folklore
concepts and research methodology. Part two constitutes the bulk of
the volume. Like a master builder, folklorist Espinosa skillfully ar-
ranged subtopics in a logical sequence, beginning with the Spanish tra-
dition in America as a basic foundation.
Continuing with conventional Spanish ballads, Espinosa examined
the gamut of sixteenth-century romances which attracted the admira-
tion of "creative spirits of many races and peoples" (p. 77) who ab-
sorbed them into their social milieu. Immigrants to Hispanic America,
in their cultural luggage, carried Catholic doctrines, ceremonies, and
traditions in the form of hymns, prayers, and religious verses. The
crux of Espinosa's study was a comparison of Iberian folklore with the
northern New Mexico/southern Colorado variety, filtering out simi-
larities, deviations, innovations, and recurring themes. Frequently the
author's gratification transcended the narrative when he related how
folktales, separated by time and space, survived in the consciousness of
elders and youth in remote villages. Clearly, Espinosa symbolized the
connecting bond between the Old World roots of the folklore and a re-
surgent growth in the Rio Grande cultural basin of North America.
Working in distinct spheres of creative endeavor, Aurelio and J. Man-
uel Espinosa performed an act of preservation. While the folklorist cap-
tured the essence of an oral literary tradition and transcribed it for pos-
terity, the editor-historian advanced the process to greater fruition with
a quality publication. Most aficionados of the borderlands will surely
applaud The Folklore of Spain in the American Southwest as a landmark
contribution to the humanities.
University of Texas at San Antonio FALIX D. ALMARAZ, JR.
American Log Buildings: An Old World Heritage. By Terry G. Jordan.
(Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1985. Pp. x+ 195.
Preface, maps, tables, illustrations, photographs, conclusion, notes,
bibliography, index. $26.)

197

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 92, July 1988 - April, 1989. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101212/. Accessed August 28, 2014.