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

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

ing musical work of Bob Wills. While Wills was developing a "western
swing," the people of Oklahoma were suffering through the Great De-
pression. Rural Oklahomans found their spokesman in United States
Senator J. W. Elmer Thomas. David E. Webb, in "The Thomas
Amendment: A Rural Oklahoma Response to the Great Depression,"
tells how Thomas's amendment to the 1933 farm bill paved the way
for later banking reform and also became "perhaps Oklahoma's most
famous contribution to national agricultural legislation" (p. 1 12).
The essay "Rural Images, Rural Values and American Culture: A
Comment," by William W. Savage, Jr., does not address itself directly
to Oklahoma, but the careful scrutiny of rural imagery, rural myths,
and rural realities, and their setting in American culture provides a
broad understanding of rural values so that rural Oklahoma values
can be placed in their proper perspective.
The essays in Rural Oklahoma are well written, thoroughly re-
searched, and give a good understanding of the topics. If other states
would follow the example of Oklahoma, there would be a better under-
standing of agriculture, rural values, and rural peoples. The Oklahoma
Historical Society is to be congratulated for publishing this book as
well as the whole "Oklahoma Series."
Fort Hays State University JAMES L. FORSYTHE
Slavery and the Evolution of Cherokee Society, 1540o-866. By Theda
Perdue. (Knoxville: The University of Tennessee Press, 1979. Pp.
207. Maps, bibliographic essay, bibliography, index. $12.50.)
Two distinctly different institutions are considered as slavery in this
well-written monograph: the aboriginal Cherokee institution of bond-
age governing those captives who were not so fortunate as to be adopted
into Cherokee families; and the acquisition of and reliance upon black
slaves by some acculturated Cherokees in the late eighteenth and early
nineteenth centuries. Much of the description of the role of black
slaves could apply to the "peculiar institution" throughout the South,
but Perdue finds the harshness of their lot ameliorated by values rooted
in the earlier aboriginal institution. Wealth produced by slaves exacer-
bated economic and social divisions in the already strained Cherokee
nation.
Perhaps Perdue's greatest contribution lies in the concise overview
of the much-studied, complex Cherokee history, presented as context

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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 October 1, 2014.