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

Book Reviews

and seasonal enterprise to that twentieth-century behemoth, the Beef
Trust. Also treated as part of this story is the emergence of organized
labor, consumerism, and antitrust laws.
The author ends on a somber note. He suspects that the livestock and
meat-packing industry may return to something akin to the days of the
Beef Trust. Corporate mergers and conservative courts will make this
possible, along with a Reagan administration that trusts Adam Smith's
invisible hand over USDA standards to rid meat of toxins and rat
pellets.
The strength of this book lies in its scope and breadth; but in fair-
ness, this also represents a weakness. At times the book nearly reads
like a dictionary, jumping from one set of facts and statistics to the next.
There is also a paucity of original research. Prime Cut is mostly a com-
pilation and-summary of other studies. And while the bibliography is
lengthy it is not necessarily impressive. With the exception of USDA
and Federal Trade Commission reports, nearly all source materials are
secondary.
One should not be dissuaded from reading this work because of
its lack of original research, however. As a reference for anyone inter-
ested in the American livestock and meat-packing industry, the book is
invaluable.
Northeast Texas Community College BENTON R. WHITE
Davy Crockett: The Man, the Legend, the Legacy, 1786-1986. Edited by
Michael A. Lofaro. (Knoxville: The University of Tennessee Press,
1985. Pp. xxiii+ 2o3. Preface, illustrations, notes, index. $14.95.)
Few frontier characters have exercised such a spell over the Ameri-
can public as Davy Crockett. That a book should appear about this
rough-and-tumble Tennessean on the sesquicentennial of his death is
only fitting. Michael A. Lofaro, a member of the Department of En-
glish at the University of Tennessee, edits, and contributes to, this study
of "an obscure backwoods hunter" who became a "symbol of the Ameri-
can frontier in both its noble and savage aspects" (p. xiii). Other con-
tributors include Catherine L. Albanese, professor of Religion, Wright
State University; Richard Boyd Hauck, Department of English, Univer-
sity of West Florida; MargaretJ. King, freelance writer and staff mem-
ber of Lippincott Publishers; John Seelye, professor of American litera-
ture, University of Florida; and Charles K. Wolfe, professor of English,
Middle Tennessee State University.
The figure of Davy Crockett began to reach a national audience
when he entered the United States Congress in 1827. While he was "a
perfectly ordinary pioneer who had a brief flirtation with greatness"

417

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 May 7, 2015.