The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 68, July 1964 - April, 1965 Page: 530
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
servations behind the Federal lines, as a hospital patient and con-
valescent, and then as a prisoner on Johnson's Island, rate among
the best to come out of the war from the Confederate side.
The only drawback to Barziza's narrative is his tendency at
times to stop in the middle of an interesting account and phil-
osophize on some well-worn subject of little interest to the aver-
age reader. Such is the case with his soliloquy on the futility of
war and the ordeal of battle-a discourse that consumes four
As most ardent Confederates, Captain Barziza was contemptu-
ous of the Northerners as soldiers and freely ridiculed the Yankee
civilians from bartenders to the President. It is interesting to
note however, that his scorn for the Federals was temporarily
shelved at one stage in his "adventures." On several occasions,
while Barziza was passing through Canada on his way back to
"Dixie," he heard British officers berate the fighting ability of
Americans. As in the old story of the two brothers fighting each
other and then joining forces to combat a third party, Barziza
turned his scorn on the Englishmen, remarking, "I almost wish
the Yankees would fight and whip them (the British), so as to
No doubt the most important part of Barziza's memoirs from
an historical standpoint, aside from his account of Gettysburg, is
his account of the Canadian-Confederate "underground railroad"
and how it operated.
Certainly the most amusing and entertaining phase of the book
is the story of Barziza's travels through "Yankeedom" after he
escaped from a federal prison train. On numerous occasions the
loquacious Texas lawyer would be wined and dined by the un-
suspecting Yankees. After his months of prison fare and austere
living one could almost feel the satisfaction that "Bar" (as he
was often called) enjoyed puffing on a long Havana and wiping
the foam from his thirsty lips.
Henderson Shuffler, director of Texana programs at the
University of Texas, has done a quite competent job of editing
this interesting adventure story. Also, he has made a noteworthy
contribution to Texas history with his introductory biographical
sketch of Decimus et Ultimus Barziza.
This is basic Confederate Texas history, easy to read, well
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 68, July 1964 - April, 1965, periodical, 1965; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101198/m1/617/: accessed May 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.