The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 65, July 1961 - April, 1962 Page: 603
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This publication initiates the M. K. Brown Range Life Series
presumably established by a donation from M. K. Brown of Pam-
pa. Because of its readability, its focus on the XIT Ranch, and
its overall attractiveness, 6,ooo Miles of Fence should easily sell
enough copies to carry its financial weight, which probability
coupled with an announcement in the front of the book, will
assure collectors that additional books will soon be entered in the
already overcrowded subject area of "Life on the Range."
Thus, with a small groan of protest at the vision of another
dozen or so books on cowboy life, I lament that Frantz, who did
well what he intended to do, did not aim higher and achieve
more. Perhaps with his interest aroused in the XIT story, he
may next turn his talent as a writer and his ability as a business
historian to the task of producing a full dress history of that great
ranching venture. Haley's splendid history of the ranch, written
in 1929 before the business records and correspondence became
available, is largely based on interviews that the cowboy-historian
made with old-timers. The XIT Ranch of Texas, like all of the
rest of Haley's books, is a monument to thoroughness, craftsman-
ship, and a penetrating, analytical mind. It is one of the classics
of ranch literature, but it does not utilize the materials now
available for extending the history of the ranch and approaching
it as the gigantic business operation which it was.
Some time after his book was written, Haley persuaded the
Syndicate to deposit its papers and records for permanent pres-
ervation in the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum in Canyon.
There repose, virtually unused and unresearched, several hun-
dred thousand documents of vital concern to Texas and western
history. What a pity it will be if Frantz does not move from his
present book to a significant study of the Capitol Syndicate's
sprawling i9th century enterprise-from cowboy life to the dra-
matic story of the building of the Texas state house-from rem-
iniscences to an analysis of the biggest land operation in the state
if not the nation-from a genre that has reached the near satura-
tion level to an area that is crying for specialized study and
interpretation. SEYMOUR V. CONNOR
Texas Technological College
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 65, July 1961 - April, 1962, periodical, 1962; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101195/m1/667/: accessed December 16, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.