The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 65, July 1961 - April, 1962 Page: 605
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ranchers began to fear the Confederate cavalry almost as much
as the enemy.
Stephen Oates would not compare these troops with Stuart's cav-
alry in the eastern campaign, but he praises General John S.
Marmaduke's division at Prairie Grove, the battle which best
illustrates the cavalry's tactical role. Although a stalemate, in
reality the battle resulted in a Confederate defeat as federal forces
occupied the territory north of the Arkansas River. Redirecting
their strategy, four Confederate raids later struck into enemy-held
territory: two led by Marmaduke, one by Colonel Joseph O.
Shelby, and the fourth by General Sterling "Old Pap" Price. In
the last raid, "all of the major objectives had been abandoned,
a number of good cavalry officers lost to the enemy, and the
incompetence of the commanding general made glaringly evident
(p. 153) ."
When General Lee's surrender brought an end to the fighting
in the East, some Trans-Mississippi cavalrymen did not surrender,
but joined Shelby and Price in flight to Mexico or moved out to
Indian country. Others agreed to disband after Colonel John S.
"Rip" Ford's battle at Palmetto Ranch. "By May 21 everything
in Texas had crumbled (p. 160)."
Appropriate appendices, a usable index, and a comprehensive
bibliography are welcome features as the Trans-Mississippi cav-
alry has attracted fewer searchers than its noble eastern counter-
part. The author has been less successful in "artistic historical
writing (p. x) " than he would aspire. Perhaps the uneven quality
of his efforts would seem less apparent had he restricted his
prefatory remarks on this subject. Excessive use of the passive
voice has not permitted him to match the pace of the events he
recounts. Nevertheless, the book is well organized and contains
occasional descriptions which delight the reader. "The 'uniform'
of the cavalry were, as the circumstances of their procurement
might suggest, as promiscuous in color and assortment as they
were insecure in fabrication (p. 6o)."
Historians, for several reasons, hesitate to recommend masters'
theses for publication, a precaution which the author attacks in
his Preface. Confederate Cavalry West of the River is a revision
of a thesis presented to the University of Texas history depart-
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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/m1/669/: accessed May 25, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.