The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 102, July 1998 - April, 1999

Book Reviews

in the United States. For both, Ruiz has written a well-documented account of
women who made history in their communities and thereby in America.
University of Texas at Austin TERESA PALOMO ACOSTA
Austin: A History of the Capital Czty. By David C. Humphrey. (Austin: Texas State
Historical Association, 1997. Pp. v+75. Illustrations, notes, index, about the
author. ISBN o-87611-162-2. $7.95, paper).
This is a very brief history of Austin, Texas, from its beginning in 1839 to the
present time by the author of Austin: An Illustrated History (Windsor, 1985). It is
a part of the Fred Rider Cotten Popular History Series published by the Texas
State Historical Association. Humphrey presents his history as an extended essay
cut into six chapters with no number break of the endnote sequence. The story
essentially moves forward in chronological fashion, but there is one segment de-
voted to race relations and the development of a tri-ethnic city involving blacks,
whites, and Hispanics. Otherwise, Humphrey touches briefly on a variety of top-
Ics including urban planning, culture, governmental structure, economics, the
Civil War, education, and Austin's struggle to sustain a high quality of city life.
The brevity will disappoint people seeking detailed information-for exam-
ple, reference to the construction of the current Texas capitol is contained in
only eight lines. The briefness also makes impossible much explanation by way
of humor or anecdote, but Humphrey includes a memorable phrase about the
route to early Austin. In a complaint to Mirabeau B. Lamar in 1839 the roads
were described by S. A. Roberts as "impassable-not even jackassable" (p. 4).
Yet, the intent of the book is to provide for general readers a concise, accu-
rate, and lucid historical account of Austin. This has been accomplished in fine
manner. The detailed endnotes provide scholarly authority, and are not obtru-
sive. Anyone who wants to know more can dig a bibliography out of those notes,
but since the book is intended for casual readers, a one-page list of suggested
readings would prove helpful. The Texas State Historical Association as well as
author David C. Humphrey deserve commendation for this effort to bring schol-
arly work to the public.
Colorado State University DAVID G. MCCOMB
The Burden of Confederate Dzplomacy. By Charles M. Hubbard. (Knoxville: Universi-
ty of Tennessee Press, 1998. Pp. xvii+253. Illustrations, preface, introduc-
tion, notes, bibliography, index. ISBN 0-57233-002-3. $38.00, cloth).
Since Frank L. Owsley published King Cotton Diplomacy in 1931, there is no
study that focuses on Confederate diplomatic efforts to create a new nation, or
attempts to offer a new synthesis from the Southern perspective. The Burden of
Confederate Diplomacy is such a work. "My objective is to provide a narrative that
emphasizes the burdens and frustrating problems that confronted Confederate
diplomats, both at home and abroad," Hubbard writes. "The burdensome com-
mitment to slavery, King Cotton, and other ideological values overwhelmed an

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 102, July 1998 - April, 1999. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101219/. Accessed September 20, 2014.