Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Brown's more complex definition of honor can explain parts of southern life not
embraced by his analysis will be the focus of the debate to come.
University of Arkansas Daniel E. Sutherland
Fluid Arguments: Five Centuries of Western Water Conflict. Edited by Char Miller. (Tuc-
son: University of Arizona Press, 2ool. Pp. xi+354. List of illustrations, list of
tables, acknowledgments, introduction, index. ISBN 0-8165-2061-5. $45.00,
In May 1998 the American Society for Environmental History sponsored a con-
ference on water in the American West at Trinity University. From this confer-
ence Char Miller has assembled sixteen papers tracing water issues since the
sixteenth century. Obviously, historical background is essential for understanding
contemporary water debates. Miller divides the essays into four categories. In the
first, "New Spain's Frontiers,"Jesis de la Teja traces the settlement of land in the
south Texas/northern Mexico area during the Spanish and Mexican periods.
Shelly C. Dudley describes the success of the Pima Indians in the Gila River re-
gion in adapting Spanish tools and crops. Sandra K. Mathews-Lamb finds that ear-
ly Spanish settlement on the Chama River, beginning with the Ofiate expedition
of 1598, marked the start of land and water rights claims in New Mexico.
In the second section, "The Native American Struggle for Water," Bonnie Lynn-
Sherow focuses on the traditional Kiowa view of water, arguing that their beliefs
more resemble Euro-American attitudes than the stereotypical depiction of Native
Americans as environmental stewards. DonaldJ. Pisani discusses the paradox of a
federal policy advocating that Indians become farmers while white farmers were
giving up on the land. Alan S. Newell sees the federal government challenging the
Wznters v. United States decision that created a reserved right for Indian tribes.
Daniel McCool, also looking at the Winters decision, assesses its limits and how it
may or may not have benefited Indian tribes. The third section, "Agricultural Co-
nundrums," offers five essays. Jame E. Sherow sees the Chisholm Trail era of
1860-1885 as a time when cattlemen, farmers, and Indians placed different de-
mands on rangeland resources from Texas to Kansas. Brad F. Raley provides a case
study of irrigation development problems in the Grand Valley of western Colorado
in the 188os.John P. Tiefenbacher profiles the growth of agriculture and industry
in the Lower Rio Grand Valley of Texas and their impact on water supply. Thomas
C. Schafer examines agricultural changes in southwestern Kansas. John Opie cri-
tiques traditional mapmaking of High Plains counties as drawing different conclu-
sions when measuring groundwater sources, rainfall, and other factors.
The final section, "Dam Those Waters," offers Donald C.Jackson's essay on the
career ofJohn E. Eastwood, the hydraulic engineer who designed the Cave Creek
flood-control dam outside Phoenix. Mark Harvey traces the rise and decline of big
dam construction in the twentieth century. Raul M. Sanchez describes the El
Cuchillo Dam Project in Mexico as an environmental disaster. Concluding the
volume, Hal K. Rothman assesses where future water disputes may take place and
what their causes may be.
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 May 23, 2015.