The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 84, July 1980 - April, 1981

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

comforting. But despite its depth and rationality, the narrative is curi-
ously one-dimensional. There are no heroes or villains, since the poli-
cies in question were doomed to failure. Reconstruction may have been
naive or unwise, but what alternative was there to some such effort?
Would the country really have accepted the South's solution, the status
quo ante bellum without slavery? If all parties sought partisan ad-
vantage, whatever their rhetoric, does not the historical advantage in
the large view lie with the one whose ambitions at least approximated
what posterity held right and necessary? If so, the Republican party
shines by comparison with its rivals, however mixed its motives or re-
grettable its weaknesses.
University of Oklahoma H. WAYNE MORGAN
San Antonio Legacy. By Donald E. Everett. (San Antonio: Trinity Uni-
versity Press, 1979. Pp. 120o. Preface, illustrations. $ o.)
Donald Everett of Trinity University's history department has
searched the back issues of the San Antonio Express for accounts of all
but forgotten episodes and legends of the Alamo City's past. What he
found he organized into three general categories that treat unusual as-
pects of daily life, the maturing social and cultural scene, and the mys-
tery area of fact-or-fiction in the city's past. The author extracted the
articles verbatim from the Express and presented them without com-
ment, other than a brief prefatory statement introducing each of the
three sections.
The articles in the section "Frontier Town" are unrelated accounts
of such diverse subjects as the Civil War cotton trade, firefighting, and
cattlemen; some of the accounts counterbalance one another, as when
the accepted violence of the gambling houses and saloons contrasts with
the Vigilance Committee's search for peace and quiet that decorated
local trees with unsavory characters, or when the relative speed of the
stagecoach is compared with the slowness of the wagon train. In "The
Ladies" the city is beyond the frontier era, with a flourishing social life
of formal weddings and exuberant pageants and a developing desire
for individual and community cultural improvement. "Legendary
Stories" aptly describes the articles in the final section; all are linked
to true Alamo City locations or events, but the truth of none of the
stories can be guaranteed.
San Antonio Legacy is a handsome book, beautifully put together,
with Jose Cisneros's charming illustrations. It is a teaser, a fun look at

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 84, July 1980 - April, 1981. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101225/. Accessed April 24, 2014.