The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 60, July 1956 - April, 1957 Page: 334

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

gration to western Virginia and Texas during the two decades
prior to the Civil War. Such promoters were numerous and
energetic, but a general lack of success dogged their footsteps
throughout the period. Actually, their impact was not profound.
Mr. Shepperson's book is a little disappointing. The land
agent never quite comes to life. The reader gets almost nothing
of his real techniques-of his behind-the-scenes promotional ac-
tivities-save that brought to light by the press in the 1840's and
1850's. Sections devoted to the operations of midwestern and of
western Virginia speculators are scanty, to say the least. Nor is
documentation always clear or meticulous, especially where cor-
respondence has been used; occasionally it is lacking completely,
as, for example, when the author discusses William Kennedy's
Texas grant (p. 47). The activities of Richard Rowed were more
extensive than Mr. Shepperson indicates: additional information
in the Colonial Office papers (C.O. 384/80) and in the Foreign
Office series (F.O. 5/504) might have been used, along with
Mary Doreen Wainwright's pertinent "Agencies for the Promo-
tion or Facilitation of Emigration From England to the United
States of America, 1815-1861," a thesis at the University of Lon-
don, 1951.
Pennsylvania State University
A Hundred Years of Comfort in Texas: A Centennial History.
By Guido E. Ransleben. San Antonio (The Naylor Com-
pany), 1954. Pp. xii+239. Illustrations, index. $6.oo.
The dedication of this book is made to Alex Brinkmann,
1868-1947, who perhaps gathered more material on the history
of Comfort, Texas, than any other man. Brinkmann, the father-
in-law of the author, gave this reviewer much valuable informa-
tion on Comfort when he was doing research on the founding
of German settlements in Texas for the period from 1831 to the
outbreak of the Civil War.
The jacket of the book speaks truly when it says that this is
"a story of courage-of courage kept alive and backed by a great
dream of freedom. . . . In this book, the author, a native of
Comfort, brings together all the parts of [the settler's] story into
a moving panorama of adventure, heartbreak, humor, war, work,


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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 60, July 1956 - April, 1957, periodical, 1957; Austin, Texas. ( accessed January 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History,; crediting Texas State Historical Association.