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The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 71, July 1967 - April, 1968

304 Southwestern Historical Quarterly
some who went west with less noble motives, seeking not settlement
but plunder.
While in modified agreement with Frederick Jackson Turner that
the frontier had a strong influence in developing American traits,
Hawgood insists that the frontier did not end with the last century.
He points out that true pioneers still can find new opportunity in
northwestern Canada and in Alaska. Careful of his facts-though he
misdates the St. Louis World's Fair of 1904-he writes with gusto and
has turned out a book that will please both the scholar and the gen-
eral reader.
Dallas WAYNE GARD
Methodism Moves Across North Texas. By Walter N. Vernon. Dallas
(The Historical Society, North Texas Conference. The Methodist
Church), 1967. Pp. 416. Illustrations, appendices, indices. $4.95.
To write a history of an institution for a particular audience and
to produce acceptable history at the same time is a difficult task. To
some degree, Walter Vernon has done this in his book Methodism
Moves Across North Texas. Historians will find much that produces
both flavor and detail of the times from 1815 to date.
Non-Methodists need to understand that the organizational unit of
the Methodist Church is called "the Annual Conference." Five such
units are found in Texas. The North Texas Annual Conference in-
volves some twenty counties, an area roughly bounded by Wichita
Falls, the Red River to Pecan Point, Sulphur Springs and Terrell on
the south and east, with Dallas as its principal city, but not including
Fort Worth. Vernon traces the history of the church from its first
appearances in the area in 1815. Stephen F. Austin in 1829 found the
Methodists a public nuisance because they were "too fanatic, too
violent and too noisy," and insisted that "it will not do to have the
Methodist excitement raised in this country" (p. 30). A few years
later a Mexican commander asked if the Methodists were stealing
horses or killing anybody. After a negative reply, he insisted, "Let
them alone," and there was no further opposition (p. 3)2. It is
recorded that only seven dollars was raised for the support of the
ministry in 1850 in Dallas. Since those days the growth has been
phenomenal.
The author sees the church in the perspective of the times: the

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 71, July 1967 - April, 1968. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117145/. Accessed May 5, 2015.