Frontier Violence is not without flaws. It seems unnecessary to continu-
ally refer, however sympathetically, to the California Indians as "Diggers."
Ninteenth-century terms of disparagement need to be replaced with more
precise and accurate appelations. Some errors, such as incorrect dates for
the Medicine Lodge Treaty (p. I32) and the arrival of the Santa Fe Rail-
road in Las Vegas, New Mexico (p. 129), are insignificant, but perplexing
indeed are several statements about Billy the Kid. It is his misfortune to
be killed by Pat Garrett in May, 1881 (p. 188), again in July, 1881 (p.
189), and then nine months later to be warned out of town by the irate
townspeople of Las Vegas (illustration on p. I79). More importantly, a
few topics such as violence against women and Negroes need more atten-
tion. "Cattle Kate" was not the only frontierswoman to suffer from vigilante
action, and it is debatable that the frontier was "far more tolerant of Ne-
groes than were the South and Northeast" (p. 209).
Despite such shortcomings, Frontier Violence merits high acclaim. It is
lucidly written, provocative, and well-balanced. Hollon seeks neither to
condemn nor to glorify our past. Instead, he has produced a carefully
reasoned synthesis that may well be the best introduction to the topic, while
his notes and thirty-page bibliography will provide a useful guide to further
study in the area.
Arkansas State University CHARLES KENNER
From Buffalo to Oil: History of Scurry County, Texas. Compiled by Hooper
Shelton in collaboration with Scurry County Historical Survey Com-
mittee. ([Snyder, Texas: Feather Press, 1973]. Pp. 272. Illustrations.
Scurry County, located in the Lower Plains, was created in 1876 but
not organized until I884. The area was delayed in its settlement because
of its location; it was not on the way to anywhere. Indian trails had, of
course, crisscrossed the county. Coronado may have entered the county;
Randolph B. Marcy and possibly Robert E. Lee did come that way. No
pioneer trail crossed its acres before the coming of the buffalo hunter. As
the last of the great buffalo herds was pursued southward, the white man
began to take an interest in the area. By the middle I87os hunters came
in increasing numbers; among the most famous were the Mooar brothers.
Hide Town (later Snyder) was first settled in 1877 when W. H. (Pete)
Snyder opened a trading post on Deep Creek.
With the slaughter of the southern herd, cattlemen came to the county
in the early I88os. Agriculture came later, as did the railroad, but county
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 78, July 1974 - April, 1975. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117149/. Accessed September 16, 2014.