The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 102, July 1998 - April, 1999 Page: 426
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Charlotte Churchill's translation of Herman Ehrenberg's narrative of the Texas
Revolution was completed while she was a French instructor at Our Lady of the Lake
College in San Antonio. Standing in the back row in the white blouse, she is pictured here
with her sisters and cousins in France shortly before World War I. The "little prince" seat-
ed second from the right is Charlotte's cousin Antoine de Saint-Exupery. Photograph from
Helen Elizabeth Crane, L'Humanisme dans L'Oeuvre de Saint -Exupry (Evanston: The
Principia Press of Illinois, Inc., 1957), picture opposite p. 18. Courtesy the Harry Ransom
Humanities Research Center, the University of Texas at Austin.
of the memoir that had been published in Leipzig in the 184os. Having
heard that no English version of the text existed, Charlotte set about to
translate it from the German, and in the centennial year of Ehrenberg's
grand adventure, she decided to take the bold step of having her trans-
lation published. Hence the package on John McGinnis's desk in Dallas.10
This was a daring gambit for Charlotte Churchill because she knew a
dirty little secret about Ehrenberg: running through his memoir was a
scarlet thread of anti-Catholicism. The very first page of his narrative
contains a denunciation of the Jesuits, who, he claimed, "by means of
torture and executions at the fiery stake, had imposed upon the once
peaceful tribes [of Mexico] a formalistic religion that smothered their
spirit." Time and again in his memoir, Ehrenberg detailed his debates
with a Catholic Rhine-Prussian in the Mexican service-his nemesis and
10 Churchill to McGinnis, June 11, 1935, Southwest Review Collection; see also note i, above.
Today the Brinkmann copy Charlotte Churchill used may be found in the Special Collections
Department of the Alkek Library at Southwest Texas State University, San Marcos, Texas.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 102, July 1998 - April, 1999, periodical, 1999; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101219/m1/497/: accessed October 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.