The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 105, July 2001 - April, 2002

Book Reviews

the rapidly growing Catholic church in Texas offered him some of his best com-
missions. A Catholic himself, Clayton might be studied in the context of a group
of late-nineteenth-century Catholic architects among whom Patrick J. Keely of
New York and J. J. Kane of Fort Worth might figure prominently. Biographical
questions remain, among them the exact chronology of Clayton's moves
between 1856 and 1871 and the nature of his relation to the Memphis partner-
ship of Edward Culliat Jones and Mathias Harvey Baldwin. The piquant claims
that Clayton was influenced by A. W. N. Pugin (p. 31, p. 38) and Viollet-le-Duc
(P- 4, P. 32, p. 46, pp. 60-62), to say nothing of other European and European-
trained architects, would repay further study. And the publication of this volume
will almost certainly bring additions to Clayton's catalog; his Sacred Heart
Cathedral (1899) in Dallas among them.
But finally this is a handsome, well-written, well-illustrated book that gives
pre-storm Galveston its due as an architecturally sophisticated city, made so in
great measure by the career of NicholasJ. Clayton, here admirably and critical-
ly documented.
College of Saint Thomas More PATRICK JAMES
William Pitt Ballznger: Texas Lawyer, Southern Statesman, 1825-z 888. By John
Anthony Moretta. (Austin: Texas State Historical Association, 2000. Pp.
xii+331. Acknowledgments, foreword, introduction, epilogue, bibliography,
notes, index. ISBN 0-87611-177-0. $29.95, cloth.)
William Pitt Ballinger left his home in Kentucky and moved to Texas in 1843
at the age of eighteen to seek his fortune. He chose the law as his vehicle for suc-
cess. The law offered a promising path upward for ambitious young men of the
time, and Ballinger was more ambitious than most. Afflicted with chronic asth-
ma at an early age, he compensated for his illness with a workaholic mentality
and deep-seated sense of insecurity that pushed him to excel.
During the 184os and 185os Ballinger built a lucrative general practice in
Galveston that specialized in real estate law. Moretta characterizes him as a polit-
ical and social conservative who rarely questioned the prerogatives or outlook of
his generally well-to-do clients. He was also a typical white Southern slaveholder,
viewing blacks as inherently inferior beings who deserved their fate. "By the end
of the [1850s]," Moretta writes, "Ballinger's individual and legal acclaim had
won him a permanent place in Galveston's ruling oligarchy" (p. 87).
Ballinger was an outspoken Unionist, but after Abraham Lincoln's election he
sided with the Confederacy. His health kept him out of the army; instead, he
agreed to assume one of the more thankless jobs in the Confederacy, acting as a
government agent to ferret out and confiscate Yankee-owned property in Texas.
In his spare time he wrote patriotic articles for local newspapers and fretted over
the manifest shortcomings of Confederate policy-making in Texas. When the
war ended, Ballinger feared legal and personal retribution for his high-profile
role in the Confederacy, but he managed to secure a pardon from Andrew
Johnson and he slowly rebuilt his practice while resuming his position among

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 105, July 2001 - April, 2002. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101222/. Accessed November 25, 2014.