The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003

Book Reviews

ish government, as well as the significance of virulent anti-African prejudice in
shaping Guerrero's visionary egalitarianism.
Given the clear success of these valuable historical recoveries, one wishes that
Vincent had drawn his boundaries there. Instead, he overreaches in the last
quarter of the book, which detracts from the volume's effectiveness. By at-
tempting to discern Guerrero's guiding hand in the lives and careers of numer-
ous descendants-from the nineteenth century to the twenty-first-Vincent
oversimplifies both the complexity of his subject's message and the shape of
modern Mexican history. Likewise his attempt to link Guerreroismo to most ev-
ery Mexican revolutionary movement-from Ayutala in 1854 to Chiapas in
1994-denies historical contingency by suggesting that all political unrest in
Mexico has grown from a similar root and achieved indentical expression. Con-
sidering what Guerrero accomplished in his own relatively short life, and in
spite of his humble beginnings, such overstatement hardly seems necessary in
establishing the power of his legacy.
Princeton University Andrew Graybill
The Adventures and Recollections of General Walter P. Lane, a San Jacinto Veteran, Con-
tazning Sketches of the Texian, Mexzcan, and Late Wars, wzth Several Indian Fzghts
Thrown In. By Walter Paye Lane. Edited by Jimmy L. Bryan Jr. (Dallas:
William P. Clements Center for Southwest Studies, Southern Methodist Uni-
versity, 2000. Pp. 260. Acknowledgments, introduction, notes, bibliography,
index. $55.oo, cloth.)
The phrase sui generis comes to mind in contemplating this remarkable and
useful work, read widely and used by researchers for generations in its original
1887 edition and as edited and reprinted in 1928. No comparable document ex-
ists in terms of scope, detail, and general accuracy. No future undertaking to ed-
it Lane's writing is likely, for the present work must be considered definitive, or
as nearly so as possible.
Walter P. Lane was born in Ireland in 1817, and from 1828 to 1835, when
this memoir opens, he resided with his family in Ohio. Seeking adventure as a
teenager, he went west by himself, fought under Sam Houston at San Jacinto,
joined the crew of a privateer, cast about variously in civil pursuits, and by 1844
tied in with the celebrated Capt. John C. Hayes of the Texas Rangers. After inter-
esting exploits during the U.S.-Mexican War (at age 30 serving as a battalion
commander), Lane rushed for California gold-thus a four-year interval involv-
ing also some adventures in Peru, Panama, and New Orleans, before he settled
in Marshall, Texas. Middling success in the grocery business was readily inter-
rupted by another gold-seeking adventure, this time to southern Arizona
(1856-1858), filling out the last of the first block of the book.
Readers may be intrigued by the promise in the title of "several Indian fights
thrown in." The most notable and interesting among these was the so-called
"Surveyors' Fight" in 1838 in northern Limestone County. The Texas General

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101223/. Accessed December 26, 2014.