The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 94, July 1990 - April, 1991 Page: 153

Book Reviews

Dallas as the centennial city was worth far more to them than their re-
sistance to the creation of the LCRA.
If there is a criticism of this history, it is that the authors failed to
amplify the important and critical roles played by the first general man-
ager, Clarence McDonough, and the able ex-senator from Seguin, Al-
vin J. Wirtz. History tells us that but for the superhuman efforts of
these two personalities there would not be an LCRA. Second, more in-
formation and discussion surrounding the early participants from the
small towns and rural counties I believe would have provided a clearer
understanding of their motivations and how the LCRA changed their
economic well-being and life-styles. It is a shame John Babcock did not
live to see his book published.
Marble Falls, Texas GEORGE M. WENTSCH
The Capitol Story: Statehouse in Texas. By Mike Fowler and Jack McGuire
with Noel Grisham and Marla Johnson. (Austin: Eakin Press, 1988.
Pp. x+ 182. Preface, acknowledgments, illustrations, bibliography,
index. $29.95.)
As the title suggests, The Capitol Story purports to tell the history of
the present Texas Capitol completed in 1888. The book contains seven-
teen chapters with more than 220 illustrations, including thirty-two
pages in color, a short bibliography of chiefly secondary works, and an
index. The lack of a comprehensive, well-researched, and objective vol-
ume about the Texas Capitol long has been a notable omission in Texas
historical literature. Such a volume would discuss the Capitol in the
context of national and international developments, particularly archi-
tecture, politics, and economics. Written for a general audience, The
Capitol Story addresses the building from a narrowly Texan viewpoint
that even fails to get the ascertainable facts correct.
With the exception of the Alamo, no other structure in Texas has in-
spired the growth of as much legend, myth, and misinformation as has
the Texas Capitol. The Capitol Story uncritically draws together more of
this folklore than any other single work to such an extent that the re-
cently published volume possesses little value for those interested in
reading a reliable account about the Texas statehouse.
More than anything else, too little in-depth, original research spoiled
The Capitol Story. The lack of thorough investigation depended too
much on secondary materials, especially newspaper and periodical ar-
ticles, and failed to compare these sources with better-documented in-
formation. Poor writing and inadequate editing resulted in publication
of a book that adds almost nothing except confusion to historical litera-
ture about the Capitol.


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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 94, July 1990 - April, 1991, periodical, 1991; Austin, Texas. ( accessed January 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History,; crediting Texas State Historical Association.