The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 98, July 1994 - April, 1995

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

of the District of New Mexico he crushed an uprising of White Mountain Apach-
es. Although in Arizona he again sent troops across the border in pursuit of hos-
tiles, his handling of diplomatic relations with Mexican officials this time
contrasted sharply with his confrontational style in Texas.
Although Mackenzie suffered a mental breakdown in New Mexico, he was
promoted to brigadier general and again assigned to Texas. In San Antonio he
became nervous, irritable, reclusive, and so violent that he was declared unfit for
duty and placed in an insane asylum in New York City. Released to relatives in
1884, he hoped to return to the ranch he had purchased in Boerne, but his ill-
ness worsened and he became unable to walk without assistance. Eventually he
grew childish and drifted into a state of mental oblivion. He died at the age of
forty-eight in 1884 and was buried with honors at West Point.
Robinson and Pierce have written excellent biographies of the amazing
Mackenzie. Both books are comprehensive, well-written, impressively re-
searched, and obviously labors of love. Both contain a number of well-drawn
maps and several photographs and sketches. Although the Pierce book is
chronologically more balanced, readers will find extended detail on Mackenzie's
Texas adventures in the Robinson work. The two books differ on the causes of
Mackenzie's mental illness. Accepting the traditional view, Pierce believes it was
caused by syphilis, while Robinson, citing studies of Vietnam veterans, argues
that Mackenzie may have suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder. Both
Pierce and Robinson are overly sympathetic to Mackenzie, who was often vain
and autocratic. Nevertheless, I highly recommend both books as certain to ap-
peal to specialists and general readers alike.
Texas A &M Internatzonal University JERRY THOMPSON
A Dose of Frontier Soldierinng: The Memozrs of Corporal E. A. Bode, Frontier Regular In-
fantry, x877-1882. By Thomas A. Smith. (Lincoln, University of Nebraska
Press, 1994. Pp. x+237. Illustrations, acknowledgments, introduction, notes,
bibliography, index. ISBN 0-8032-4232-8. $29.95.)
Born in Hanover, Germany, in 1856 and orphaned at age thirteen, Bode trav-
eled to the United States, where in 1877 he enlisted in the army, serving with
Company D, Sixteenth Infantry, until his discharge in 1882. This is a narrative
written between 1884 and 1889 of his observations while he served in the army
in Texas and in Indian Territory. While serving in Texas, Bode passed through
Forts Concho, McKavett, Bliss, Quitman, Richardson, Davis, and Stockton, de-
scribing these posts and army duties. He saw many Native Americans, and had
nothing but sympathy for their plight. He said he never shot at a Native Ameri-
can nor was he a target, although he participated in the Victorio campaign. In
May 1880 Bode's regiment was sent to far western Texas and to New Mexico as
part of the army's effort to return Apaches to reservations. Bode did not march
with his regiment into Mexico, for he was detailed to guard duty north of the
border. There he played cards, hunted, and otherwise tried to amuse himself be-



Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 98, July 1994 - April, 1995. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. Accessed July 24, 2014.