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

Book Reviews

gunboats in the 1864 Red River Campaign, the Texas cavalrymen were
constantly in the saddle.
An appendix includes detailed information on officers in Morgan's
Regiment and the Twelfth, Nineteenth, Twenty-first, and Thirtieth
Texas Cavalry Regiments-the units comprising Parsons's brigade.
Most interesting are the biographies of the company captains, with
charts showing their occupations, ages, and monetary worth. Since
much of the brigade's active duty was performed on a company level,
the background and caliber of such officers had a great impact on the
cavalry's effectiveness. Numerous maps also help the reader follow the
brigade's movements, though the Ouachita River in Louisiana and
Arkansas is consistently misnamed the Washita. Overall this is an excel-
lent book for those who wish to see the nastier, grimier side of the war
far away from the more famous battlefields.
Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts TERRY L. JONES
The American West: A Twentzeth-Century History. By Michael P. Malone
and Richard W. Etulain. (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press,
1989, Pp. xi+347. Acknowledgments, introduction, tables, map,
illustrations, bibliographical essays, index. $31.50, cloth; $12.95,
paper.)
Books about the twentieth-century West suffer from the reputation
of their subject, meaning that they cannot deal with data about moun-
tain men, Custer, cowboys, or any of the other splendid and interesting
things that happened, as every undergraduate knows, well before 1900.
Many historians share this common prejudice, since, as modern schol-
ars treating the past, either they fail to acknowledge that the twentieth
century is nearly over, or they succumb to the bias that history is by
definition something in which one personally has not spent several lus-
tra. Well, every American alive in the last quarter of the twentieth cen-
tury may indeed lay claim to membership in the Pepsi generation, and
many may be guided by Johnny Carson's late-night dictum that old age
is always ten years beyond wherever one happens to be; but the fact
remains that our century is in its ninth decade, sliding upon the cusp
of simultaneous retirement and extinction. And Michael Malone and
Richard Etulain are among the half-dozen or so distinguished scholars
who have agreed that the time has come to begin deciding what it all
meant, at least for those of us living west of Topeka.
The American West: A Twentieth-Century Hzstory begins (1900oo) and ends
(1987) with discussions of economics and politics, sandwiching a hun-
dred pages on society and culture. That is imbalance embraced in the
interest of coverage, and those partial to the culture may forgive it. Be-

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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 October 21, 2014.