The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 72, July 1968 - April, 1969

Book Reviews 419
valuable guide to the travel literature. The general reader will en-
joy the view of early Texas seen through the eyes of travelers.
The University of Texas at Austin NORMAN D. BROWN
The Pantarch: A Biography of Stephen Pearl Andrews, By Made-
leine B. Stern. Austin (University of Texas Press), 1968. Pp.
xviii+2o8. Illustrations, bibliography, index. $6.oo.
Stephen Pearl Andrews was born in 1812 and died in 1886. He was
the only pantarch that the world has yet seen, and it is doubtful wheth-
er another would be recognizable unless he copied Andrews by an-
nouncing that he was one. By his interpretation a pantarch was a kind
of all-purpose guru; he supervised an omnifacted philosophy, sociology,
and general scientific hodge-podge which postulated that the essences
of all ideas, knowledge, and things had a common denominator. Per-
haps the concept can better be explained in Alwato, a universal lan-
guage invented by Andrews, to which no key can be found. Andrews
was also involved in temperance, women's rights, Pittman shorthand,
anarchy, free love, and abolitionism.
The question Miss Stern neither asked nor answered is whether
Andrews was an unknown genius, a well-meaning fool, or a charlatan.
Her evidence brings the reader to waver between the latter two, though
Miss Stern inclines to a mixture of the first two.
It is Andrews' abolitionist activities which make this book appro-
priate for review in the Quarterly. After success as a lawyer and legal
translator in Houston, Andrews was run out of Texas in March, 1843,
for abolitionism. By June of that year he and Lewis Tappan were in
London pushing through resolutions at the Second World Conference
of the British and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society, encouraging the British
to buy freedom for Texas slaves in return for lands and assurances
that Texas would not join the Union. Plans backfired when Texas
Charge d'Affaires Ashbel Smith denounced Andrews as an unauthor-
ized meddler without even a sizeable following in Texas. The resulting
furor, Miss Stern says, united proslavery and anglophobic Americans
and procured Texas entry as a slave state.
Miss Stern's account is based primarily upon Andrews' unpublished
"A Private Chapter of the Origin of the War," (1872) the editing of
which, one suggests, should be undertaken for the Quarterly. Her
analysis does not greatly modify Justin H. Smith's work. However,

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 72, July 1968 - April, 1969. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117146/. Accessed July 10, 2014.