The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 28, July 1924 - April, 1925 Page: 248
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
All future comprehensive histories will be the result of the united
efforts of an association of scholars, an example of which is found
in the American Nation Series. As one examines the scope and
treatment of this history of the frontier, one wonders if the same
will not hold true of it, if in other words, the task of writing the
history of the American frontier is not too great for one man.
The book covers the period from 1763, when England emerged
victorious from the French and Indian War with an immense ter-
ritory on her hands, to 1912, when Arizona, the last of the forty-
eight states, was admitted to the Union. Temporally, then, the
work extends from the first acquisition of territory beyond the
limits of the original thirteen colonies to the admission of the last
block of this territory into the Union as a state; territorially, the
scope of the work includes all that area lying beyond the "Proc-
lamation Line" of 1763. The principle that applies to the whole
applies in turn to the parts: the author deals with each region
from the time it was acquired by the United States until it is
admitted to the sisterhood of states-once admitted, he is through
with it. There are chapters, for example, on "The Forks of the
Ohio," "The Shenandoah Country and the Tennessee," "The First
New States," and "The Border States: Michigan and Kansas."
But there are also topical chapters, dealing particularly with prob-
lems pertaining to the national government and national policies,
such for example as "The National Land System," "The Bonds of
Unity," dealing with roads and rivers as means of transportation,
and "Public Land Reform." This territorial and topical treat-
ment moves chronologically across the country from east to west,
without any apparent unifying principle save a certain adherence
to the problems of unadmitted American territory. The book is
more than a compilation, much more; it is less than an interpre-
tation; it is, as the author states, a synthesis, yet lacking in that
essential quality of unity which the term synthesis implies, and
which makes of a true historical synthesis also an interpretation.
Furthermore, the author has made the events of general Amer-
ican history pay heavy tribute to his title. Indian wars, Jeffer-
sonian Democracy, the Purchase of Louisiana, the War of 1812,
the Cotton Kingdom, the Missouri Compromise controversy, Jack-
sonian Democracy, the Mississippi Valley Boom, the Independent
State of Texas, the War with Mexico, Railroad Development, the
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 28, July 1924 - April, 1925, periodical, 1925; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101087/m1/252/: accessed October 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.