The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 39, July 1935 - April, 1936 Page: 78
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78 Southwestern Historical Quarterly
tie-for, as Mrs. Rak suggests, do they not owe everything they
have to the cattle?
Triggernometry: A gallery of gunfighters, with technical notes,
too, on leather slapping as a fine art, gathered from many
a loose holstered expert over the years. By Eugene Cun-
ningham. (New York: The Press of the Pioneers, 1934.
Pp. xvii +441. Illustrations, $3.75.)
This is a saga of the Old West. It contains stories of old-time
gunfighters-stories of the impulsive disregard of consequences
shown by these distinctive frontier personalities. This is inter-
esting for even casual modern readers, who, under the pleasant
glow thrown by the light of study lamps over their easy chairs,
may thus obtain thrills strictly vicarious. The scholar and truth-
seeking graduate student will be gratified to learn that 'Gene
Cunningham wrote "for the most part first-hand knowledge and,
at worst, from accounts given by participants or eye-witnesses."
Through this "gallery of gunfighters" stalk those figures of
border legend who made the history of the West a thing of drama
as well as fatalistic tragedy. Bill Longley, of the "Breed of the
Border," and John Wesley Hardin, of "Forty Notches" fame,
ride here. The lives and exploits of Sam Bass and Billy the Kid
are carefully analyzed; and even the hands of historians are
called. William E. Connelly, late secretary of the Kansas His-
torical Society and biographer of "Wild Bill" Hickok, is detected
in the act of adding a bit to the evidence offered by "hero-wor-
shipping Wild Billiams."
Fateful incident was present in the careers of nearly all; few
of these gunfighters deliberately chose outlawry. A negro influ-
enced by carpetbagger liquor, cursed Bill Longley's father, and
with the killing of the black man, this young six-footer became
one of the "three most dangerous men in Texas."
The writer's style fits the subject matter to perfection, and a
final chapter of "Triggernometry" makes the volume a work of
art. If this enthusiasm on the part of a reviewer shows a lack
of restraint, it must be remembered that here is a book which
combines readability with historical authenticity.
WILLIAM R. HOGAN.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 39, July 1935 - April, 1936, periodical, 1936; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101095/m1/86/?rotate=90: accessed August 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.