The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 55, July 1951 - April, 1952 Page: 146
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
be accepted from many of his other statements, one of which
concerns his own skepticism about the extent to which Sonorans
had been truly indoctrinated with Christianity.
On the intelligence of the Indians of Sonora a statement of
Pfefferkorn would do honor to any modern educator and is
worthy of quotation. He said:
There is no doubt, however, that Sonora children would show the
same aptitude for learning and for Christianity as is apparent in
the children of more civilized people if they had the same rearing,
and that their stupidity is not a natural deficiency, but is a result
of this bad training. For the rest, one finds many with such a
rude and laborious power of comprehension that it takes a long
time for them to learn the Lord's Prayer. However, even in Europe
there are many such dolts, who may rightly be compared with the
Pfefferkorn stuck to his subject and especially to the natural
history of Sonora. Perhaps he leaned over backward too much to
prevent autobiography from slipping in and marring his work.
His seeming reluctance to write about himself and his adven-
tures makes it difficult for historians to learn more about the
life of the author. Perhaps he wanted to stick to his expressed pur-
pose of writing about a region in which he had worked. And
that is what he did.
Professor Treutlein has done an excellent job of translation,
which at best must have been quite difficult, since this singular
treatise is at times weak in style and content. Professor Ham-
mond has again performed superbly in his role of editor of the
Coronado Cuarto Centennial Publications. Even with its short-
comings in content (shortcomings not always uninteresting in
themselves), the tract should delight historians, biologists, bot-
anists, ethnologists, and anthropologists. Indeed, the naturalists
will probably hail it even more than the historians for its minute
descriptions of the flora and fauna of Sonora in the eighteenth
FRITZ L. HOFFMAN
University of Colorado
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 55, July 1951 - April, 1952, periodical, 1952; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101139/m1/170/: accessed April 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.