The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 94, July 1990 - April, 1991

Book Reviews

purchasing 30,000 square miles of desert for a railroad in 1853; revolu-
tionaries Antonio Canales and Antonio Zapata attempting to create a
Republic of the Rio Grande; filibusters William Walker and Henry A.
Crabb invading Baja California and Sonora; soldiers John Robert Bay-
lor, Henry Hopkins Sibley, Edward R. S. Canby, and James H. Carleton
etching their names into Civil War history far from the bloody fields of
Gettysburg and Shiloh. There is the little Zapotec, Benito Juarez, per-
haps the most admirable of all, fleeing the French into the deserts of
northern Mexico to find refuge in a place that would someday immor-
talize his name. And then there is the Mexican revolutionary Juan Cor-
tina, who dominated the nineteenth-century history of the lower
border as no other.
In Metz's big canvas there is also the El Paso Salt War and the Mexi-
can Revolution. In fact, Metz appears most comfortable when writing
about the Mexican Revolution in the El Paso area. It is evident that
Metz has read widely and thoroughly. Border: The U.S. Mexzco Line,
though researched mostly from secondary sources, is a jewel.
Laredo State University JERRY THOMPSON
The Mexzcan-American Border Region: Issues and Trends. By Raul A. Fer-
nandez. (Notre Dame, Ind.: University of Notre Dame Press, 1989.
Pp. ix+ 147. Acknowledgments, introduction, maps, illustrations,
tables, graphs, notes, index. $21.95.)
For several reasons this is a useful book for a historian of the Mexi-
can-American border. It is not that it is a sophisticated historical study,
but rather that three of its five chapters do a first class job of synthesis
and basic historical interpretation. Thus, for a historian who wants an
overview of border history, this volume is a good starting place; indeed,
depending on how deep an overview one wants, it may be sufficient.
For anyone widely read in the history of the U.S.-Mexican border the
first chapter of the book will provide a nice review but not much to
chew on.
That does not mean, however, that a close student of border history
will find nothing of value in this slim volume. Chapter 2, "Water," and
chapter 3, "Migrants," both contain fairly specialized data on their sub-
ject matter that the average student of the region may not have been
exposed to. Moreover, I found their economic analysis of known his-
torical material to be both interesting and useful. To be sure such infor-
mation might be commonplace to anyone thoroughly conversant with
water and emigration policy, but for someone with a limited knowledge
of the technical aspects of those topics the book will be useful.

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 94, July 1990 - April, 1991. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101214/. Accessed December 29, 2014.