Southwestern Historical Quarterly
plays-or plays at-a guitar, and as each person requests his favorite
western ballad, everyone will sing one line or maybe two, and then
the voices will fade into the night because no one knows the lyrics
beyond the third measure. It's a worldwide failing, as likely to be
encountered in Cuzco as in Kaufman, for affinity for the western song
is as much a part of all mankind's heritage as is the western story.
But now an unlikely trio-two Californians and one Floridian-or
occupationally speaking, even worse--one musician, one English pro-
fessor, and one geophysicist, have put together nearly six hundred
pages of songs of the American West, usually complete with music and
interspersed with drawings depicting the themes.
The approach is topical rather than geographical, including such
divisions as "To the West," "Coming Around the Horn," Crossing the
Plains," "The Handcarts," "The Sioux Indians," "The Regular Army,
0!," "What Was Your Name in the States?," and "Starving to Death
on a Government Claim."
If Texas or the Southwest is your exclusive interest, you'll just have
to leaf through the table of contents and the lyrics, for the regions
are seldom segregated, only the experiences. One section, however, is
entitled "The Texas Cowboy," while among the songs listed are "Hell
in Texas," "The "Texas Rangers," the inevitable "Sam Bass" and "Billy
the Kid," "Lone Star Trail," and "John Garner's Trail Herd."
It's an expensive song sheet, but to those who treasure the rhythm
of the West it will be worth every cent. If your taste runs strictly to
the history of the singing West, and not to the raising of voices and
the chording of guitars, forget it, for the prose text is negligible. In
this instance, pardners, I'll join the singers and let the silent historians
go wherever it is that historians who don't sing find their rewards.
University of Texas at Austin JOE B. FRANTZ
The Troubled Farmer, 1850-9o00. By Earl W. Hayter. Dekalb (North-
ern Illinois University Press) , 1968. Pp. vii+349. Illustrations,
bibliography, index. $8.50.
The personal and technical aspects of rural adjustment to indus-
trialization and the commercialization of agriculture in the late nine-
teenth century United States form the general theme of this topical
study. In an introductory chapter the author explores the conflicts
between farm traditions and technological advances and their psycho-
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 April 24, 2014.