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The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 96, July 1992 - April, 1993

Book Reviews

Mappzng Texas and the Gulf Coast: The Contributions of Saznt-Denu, Olzvdn and
Le Maire. By Jack Jackson, Robert S. Weddle, and Winston De Ville. (Col-
lege Station: Texas A&M University Press, 1990. Pp. xi+92. Foreword,
maps, notes, bibliography, Index. $29.50.)
Historians of the colonial Gulf Coast, perhaps to a greater extent than their
Texas history colleagues concerned with other geographic areas and time peri-
ods, rely on contemporaneous maps and charts as sources basic to their re-
search. This is partially explained by the fact that much of the early French and
Spanish history of this region dealt with exploration, frontier settlement, and
territorial rivalry, often undertaken by persons little concerned with leaving a
narrative, documentary record of their activities. Maps, however, were re-
garded as instruments of empire by all historical players in the colonial dramas
of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Hence, the cartographic legacy
has always had much to tell. Given this, it is surprising that so many historians
have taken important published maps of the era for granted, sometimes using
them on face value as sources without inquiring too deeply into the particular
historical forces and events that produced them.
The authors of this useful volume have rectified that omission for two impor-
tant maps. This book is composed of two separate and free-standing essays: the
first, by Jack Jackson and Robert S. Weddle, examines the creation of Juan
Manuel de Olivin Rebolledo's significant Mapa Geogrdfico of 1717 and how it
was based on the expeditions of Louis Juchereau de Saint-Denis; while the sec-
ond essay, by Jack Jackson and Winston De Ville, documents the influence dur-
ing the early 1700s of Mobile missionary and amateur cartographer Francois
Le Maire on the creation of Guilliaume Delisle's 1718 map Carte de la Louzszane
et de Cours du Mississzppi. The first essay clearly establishes the influence Saint-
Denis had on Olivin Rebolledo by examining previously unpublished carto-
graphic drafts and relating these to the known facts of the Frenchman's expe-
ditions. The second essay documents how Le Maire collected geographical
information dealing with the Gulf Coast, made draft charts, and explains in
detail how these renderings formed a basis for Delisle's map. The authors base
their considerable research on lesser-known charts and cartographic manu-
scripts from the era, assisted in several cases by recent archival discoveries.
Their analysis, closely written with attention to intricate detail, establishes the
historical evolution of these maps by skillfully blending historical facts of the
period with the cartographic record. This will be a work of great utility for his-
torians of the region and one that can serve as a model for all scholars inter-
ested in the history of cartography.
Austn College LIGHT TOWNSEND CUMMINS
The West as Amerzca: Reinterpretzng Images of the Frontier, 1820-1920. Edited by
William H. Truettner, with contributions by Nancy K. Anderson, Patricia
Hills, Elizabeth Johns, Jonl Louise Kinsey, Howard R. Lamar, Alex
Nemerov, and Julie Schimmel. (Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institu-
tion Press, 1991. Pp. xiv+389. Foreword, appendices, illustrations, index,
notes. $40, paper.)

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 96, July 1992 - April, 1993. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101215/. Accessed September 30, 2014.