The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 107, July 2003 - April, 2004

Book Reviews

Lewis's claim that Lucy exhibited a "fervent belief in woman's changing place
in the hidebound patriarchal nineteenth century South" (p. vii) seems mis-
placed, however. Lucy's own words, that "a woman with wealth or prestige gar-
nered from her husband's position could attain great power" (p. 56) are not the
words of a budding feminist, but of highly-privileged woman who appreciated
the advantages of class background, beauty, and a woman's ability to "marry
well." Certainly, her fervent support for the Confederacy indicated a commit-
ment to maintaining the privileges enjoyed by the slaveholding class. A decade
before the secession crisis, her refusal to confine herself to "womanly" pursuits
led her to support the wild and grandiose schemes of Cuban filibusterers.
Vicariously seeking adventure and power in a devoutly patriarchal society, then,
as later, she also demonstrated the sense of class prerogatives that underlay the
Southern planter class's insistence on expanding slavery, even if expansion
required seizing Cuba or seceding from the Union.
Of Lucy's enthusiastic support for the Confederate cause, Lewis notes that she
helped to send "men and boys on to war with brave words of valor and high
ideals" (p. 201). In the aftermath of the death and destruction wrought by war,
one wonders if she ever regretted the assumptions of racial and class superiority
and personal love of drama that motivated those "brave words" and "high ideals."
Apparently she did not. Lewis describes Lucy's last years as spent mourning the
loss of loved ones while writing paeans to the Lost Cause of the Confederacy.
Southwest Texas State Unzverszty VICTORIA BYNUM
3 by Lawrence Clayton: A Clear Fork Chronzcle. Edited by Lou Rodenberger.
(Abilene: McWhiney Foundation Press, 2002. Pp. 303. Foreword, introduc-
tion, biographical sketch of the author, appendix, index. ISBN: 1-893114-
32-5. $29.95, cloth.)
I first met Lawrence Clayton in the late 198os when he interviewed for the job
of academic vice president at Sul Ross State University in Alpine. I was a member
of the off-campus center (now Rio Grande College). Of all the candidates who
interviewed for that job, Lawrence Clayton was the only one who made the 240-
mile trip to the off-campus center to meet the faculty in that location. I was
impressed with his concern for all faculty, both on and off campus. As we talked,
we found we shared a common interest, the literature of the West and the
Southwest, and especially the literature of Texas. This was the beginning of my
association with a man I considered a "cowboy" gentleman and scholar in every
sense of the phrase.
In 31 by Lawrence Clayton, Lou Rodenberger has collected a number of pieces
of Lawrence Clayton's work, some of which had been published in scholarly jour-
nals and magazines, and some of which were unpublished. The book is organized
as follows: a biographical sketch by Rodenberger; an essay on place in regional
writing; two essays on the John G. Irwin family saga; three essays on the story-
teller, Litt Perkins; six essays on cowboys and cowboy life; four ranch histories;
and finally a section on a variety of topics held together by the common theme of

137

2003

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 107, July 2003 - April, 2004. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101224/. Accessed December 28, 2014.