Southwestern Historical Quarterly
ture dealing with American involvement in various aspects of our
foreign policy. All the books have been well written, stimulating,
scholarly, and helpful to professors who strive to make their lectures
When the Eagle Screamed meets all the qualifications of its predeces-
sors and surpasses most of them in quality of writing and breadth of
learning. Written by Pulitzer Prize winner, William H. Goetzmann,
it portrays American expansionism in the first half of the nineteenth
century and demonstrates that America has never been free from
crises in foreign affairs.
Professor Goetzmann takes a fresh look at the old Manifest Destiny
policy, emphasizing its European background and its romantic aspects.
Romantic, that is, from the viewpoint of the Americans and not so
glamorous to those who confronted our expanding nation. Through-
out the book runs a strain of irony as our clear-eyed men of destiny
moved steadfastedly toward showdown after showdown. At times, one
wonders how we escaped disaster. Perhaps there is considerable truth
in Bismarck's later observation that there is a special providence that
protects fools, drunkards, and the United States of America.
New interpretations and new ground broken characterize When the
Eagle Screamed. John Quincy Adams receives a fresh treatment, James
K. Polk gets his just dues, and the filibustering expeditions are
given new life. Even the ladies, represented by Jane McManus, are
shown to have wielded considerable influence on our manifest destiny.
Professor Goetzmann is more at home in Latin America and
acknowledges his debt to Edward Wallace's Destiny and Glory. Con-
sequently, his chapter on the Far East lacks the liveliness of other sec-
tions and his claims that the United States became a ruthless eco-
nomic imperialist in the fashion of Britain and France (p. o02) can
and should be challenged by other historians. Controversial statements
like that one make the book all the more stimulating.
There is little to criticize and much to praise in When the Eagle
Screamed. It is a welcome addition to a fine series.
Pan American College ELMER W. FLACCUS
Stagecoach West. By Ralph Moody. New York (Thomas Y. Crowell
Company), 1967. Pp. x+341. Acknowledgments, illustrations,
maps, bibliography, index. $6.95.
The trans-Missouri West is a land of distances, aridity, and rugged
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 July 6, 2015.