The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 90, July 1986 - April, 1987

Book Reviews

tin. One can learn how a "venerable" (p. 79) politician, a "homespun,
quiet, dignified" (p. 28) man was defeated for the United States Senate
by a weak mother's boy who "calculated every friendship" (p. 59) with
no regard for political philosophy. And one can lament how the former
retired to dignified obscurity and the latter went on to the presidency
of the United States. It is a sort of cautionary tale in reverse. It is as
though St. Coke went forth to slay the dragon LBJ and the dragon won.
There are, of course, some things one won't learn from this book.
One won't understand why a statewide election was so close that it could
be decided by one voting box. One won't learn why Coke R. Stevenson
had benefitted from the Parrs' political support in five previous elec-
tions and lost it in this one. One won't learn what there was about the
nature of Texas politics in general and South Texas politics in particular
that permitted the Parrs to gain the control they had.
What one will learn is that ballot fraud occurred in the 1948 election
and that Lyndon Johnson profited from some of it. One can learn how
Texas newspapers, particularly the Dallas Morning News and the Austin
Statesman, viewed the contest. One can't learn anything about the pri-
mary sources available on this topic because none are cited or even
obliquely referred to. There is not even any mention that such sources
might exist. There is no indication of research at the LBJ Library, the
Barker Texas History Center at the University of Texas at Austin, or the
Truman Library. Perhaps the former two were closed when the author
was in town for the Cotton Bowl. In short, I do not think this book has
exhausted the topic.
North Texas State University G. L. SELIGMANN
Firearms of the American West, 1803-1865. By Louis A. Garavaglia and
Charles G. Worman. (Albuquerque: The University of New Mexico
Press, 1984. Pp. xiii+402. Preface, acknowledgments, illustrations,
notes, bibliography, index. $35-)
Firearms of the American West, i866-z894. By Louis A. Garavaglia and
Charles B. Worman. (Albuquerque: The University of New Mexico
Press, 1985. Pp. x+413. Preface, acknowledgments, illustrations,
notes, bibliography, index. $40.)
Firearms in the American West developed in response to military
needs, but were frequently adapted for use by the civilian and indige-
nous populations along the frontier. The authors of these encyclopae-
dic works trace both the development of arms production techniques
and the many alterations made by those who used guns. Through im-

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 90, July 1986 - April, 1987. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117152/. Accessed April 18, 2015.