The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 77, July 1973 - April, 1974

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

inaccurate information and circumstantial evidence. Few historians, politi-
cal experts, or average Texans will accept such flagrant, unfounded charges
as the allegations that the Department of Public Safety "manufactured
or planted" evidence to convict people (p. 139); that Governor James Hogg
"stained the ballot box with murder, fraud, and the most terrible atroci-
ties" in the 1892 gubernatorial election, and through his betrayal of liberal
reform perpetrated "the most notable sellout in Texas history" (p. 34); or
that "even the most progressive males" in the state, while maintaining that
"women are important," still expect them "to remain in their place" (p. 9).
Equally objectionable is Katz's employment of adversary techniques in
presenting history, emphasizing the strength of his case and omitting dam-
aging facts to the contrary. He has envisioned only heroes and villains, good
guys versus perpetrators of evil. Melodramatically he has compared the
"Dirty Thirty"-or about ten of them-to the heroes of the Alamo. He
characterizes Ben Barnes, whom many of the representatives disliked be-
cause of his power, position, or ideology, as a "new detergent" in "a glitter-
ing . . . wrapper" (p. 102), yet he describes Representative Curtis Graves
-a militant black from Houston who at times used a string of obscenities to
challenge his colleagues to battle-as "tall and elegant" and "flamboyant"
(pp. 196-197). Similarly he paints his characters in black and white,
seldom using any shades of gray. Thus he has portrayed the "Mutschermen"
W. S. "Bill" Heatly of Paducah as "a dwarfish man with a large bulldog
head" (p. I45), Richard Slack, Pecos, as "dark-skinned, with a molelike
face and large ears" (p. 219), and James Snider, Naples, as "slippery" with
"white lips and oily hair" (pp. 219-220). In turn, he has described "Dirty
Thirty" men Dick Reed, Dallas, as "the proud champion of the working
man" (p. 209), Frances Farenthold, Corpus Christi, as "nurtured on all the
modes and ideas of elite southern womanhood" (p. 208), and Tom Moore,
Waco, who looked like "a Crazy Horse or a Crockett," as becoming "a leg-
end" (p. 207). Consequently, because of innumerable errors in fact or ob-
vious bias and prejudice, Katz has destroyed the credibility of his story,
leaving the reader in doubt concerning what or what not to believe.
Texas Christian University BEN PROCTER
The Texas Army: A History of the 36th Division in the Italian Campaign.
By Robert L. Wagner. (Austin: Robert L. Wagner, 1972. Pp. xviii+
285. Illustrations, notes, bibliographical notes, index. $10.50.)
Texans have reason to be proud of the 36th Division in World War II,
and all who served in that grand outfit, as well as their families, will want


Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 77, July 1973 - April, 1974. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. Accessed January 28, 2015.