The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 67, July 1963 - April, 1964 Page: 139
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Dobie's laconic comment in his Guide to Life and Literature of
the Southwest (1952) was "Olmsted journeyed in order to see.
He saw." This 1962 edition of an "invaluable book on social
history," 'has been produced by Professor James Howard of Del
Mar College with the aid of a Piper Foundation Research Fel-
Frederick Law Olmsted (1822-1903), distinguished landscape
architect and horticulturist, planner of Central Park in New
York City, the grounds of the Columbian Exposition in Chicago,
the numerous city parks, was, between 1852 and 186o, a corre-
spondent for Henry Raymond's newly established New York
Times. The series of letters and articles written by Olmsted for
the paper were the result of factual and on-the-spot examination
based on his trips to the Southern states. His first dispatches
were put into book form as Journey in the Seaboard Slave States,
the last articles to go into that book being completed as he
started his second assignment "to take in the frontier and S.W.
Slave States." On this tour, between November 1853 and the
early spring of 1854, he was accompanied by his brother, Dr.
John Olmsted, who actually prepared the Texas letters for pub-
lication. While John Olmsted was editing, Frederick continued
his horseback tour through the lower and middle South to secure
material for the articles which became A Journey in the Back
Country (1860), the third unit of his trilogy on the South.
The 515 pages of the 1857 edition are reduced to 299 pages,
including a biographical "after-word" and an index. Unfortu-
nately, the index applies only to the Olmsted text and not to the
biography. The reduction is accomplished by omission of three
original chapters which concerned the route to Texas and re-
gional and general characteristics and by deleting some "Scraps
of Newspapers" and alterations of some statistical material and
These omissions do not mean that the purchaser of the current
edition does not get his money's worth. The material on the
Texas trip is complete, and the After-word is biographically and
bibliographically valuable, although I found myself unable to
work my way through the numbering system of the footnotes.
The biography puts into print some of the charming commen-
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 67, July 1963 - April, 1964, periodical, 1964; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101197/m1/161/: accessed March 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.