Emerson, he recalls that to have lived in such a time was for him "a bound-
Although his family was not pinched by poverty, everyone worked hard.
Each youngster had his chores but found time for play. Young Oren and
his companions enjoyed toys they made, simple games, and the friendliness
of dogs and ponies.
Oren was fortunate in that his parents had liberal views and hospitable
habits. When the Arnold father received the key to his new home in 1903,
he threw it as far as he could into a sweet-potato patch. The door never
was locked, and no caller who needed food or other help was ever turned
away, whether white or black. Almost always the home sheltered some
backwoods boy or girl so that he or she could go to school in town.
Oren Arnold, who has since left Texas for Arizona and California and
has written nearly seventy books, benefited from this open family life, as
he shows in his sprightly memoir. He recalls people and incidents sharply
and looks back with envy on the rustic scenes of his youth.
Among long-remembered yearly events on the farm were the making of
syrup from sugar cane in the fall and the butchering of hogs when the air
became crisp in December. In each case neighbors were on hand to help.
In the butchering a hog bladder was a prize for the boys. "The rubbery
bladder became a ten-inch globe, so we tied the nipple and ran to launch
a game of football. Let the Texas Longhorns have the Cotton Bowls. We
had the most fun" (p. 147).
Illustrated with drawings by Rosemary Detwiler, Arnold's nostalgic
memories make an entertaining and often heart-warming narrative.
Dallas WAYNE GARD
New Mexico. Photography by David Muench. Text by Tony Hillerman. (Port-
land: Charles H. Belding, 1974. Pp. I87. Illustrations. $22.00.)
California-Its Coast and Desert. Photographs by Robert Reynolds. Text by
Ruth Kirk and Archie Satterfield. (Portland: Charles H. Belding, I974.
Pp. 207. $22.00.)
While these books are by different photographers and writers, the impressive
fact about them is that they are in the format that publisher Charles Belding
and photographer Robert Reynolds used so successfully in their recent book on
Texas. While neither of the books under consideration appears to be as thor-
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 July 3, 2015.