The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 104, July 2000 - April, 2001 Page: 490
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
at its very best. The illustrations alone would merit the book's acquisition. Gwen
Thigpen is a true master of her craft.
All would have been well if the title had not represented this book as "A True
Story of Texas." Well meaning as Rogers's story is, it will unfortunately take
young Texans through one more maze of contradictory and unsubstantiated
Alamo romanticism. An example is the passage on the book's flap where it
states, "Sam Houston and Davy Crockett plotted the Texas Revolution over a
plate of Dofia Candelaria's delicious enchiladas." In the body of the book on
page thirty, one reads one more flight of fancy that tells of a letter to Andrea
from "General Sam Houston, her old friend" which said, "Candelarita, (his pet
name for Andrea) Go and take care of Bowie, my brother, in the Alamo."
Nowhere in the correspondence of the Texas Revolution does one find such a
letter. And one more time, we are taken through the paces of that ubiquitous
but fantasized fact about Travis drawing "the line in the sand."
If anything can be gleaned from the information on Dofia Candelaria in the
vertical files at the DRT Library at the Alamo, it is that years after the event,
when she was an old woman, she eagerly sought interviews by sitting in a chair at
the front entrance to the Alamo. In each eager telling about her heroic pres-
ence and involvement, she embellished her tale, telling it differently each time.
It is unfortunate that such a beautifully illustrated book falls so short of being
the true story the author purports it to be.
DRT Library, The Alamo DORA ELIZONDO GUERRA
Wild Justice: The People of Geronimo vs. the United States. By Michael Lieder and Jake
Page. (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1999. Pp. ix+318. Preface,
acknowledgments, introduction, notes, index. ISBN o-8o61-3133-0. $16.95,
Wild Justice is an insightful and often fascinating history of the Chiricahua
Apaches' long and bitter campaign to wrest fair compensation from the United
States government for their twenty-seven-year imprisonment and the confisca-
tion of their tribal lands after the surrender of Geronimo in 1886. Despite its
provocative title, the work is neither a history of the Chiricahua's military cam-
paigns nor a sensationalistic account of life in the "Wild West." It is, rather, an
exhaustively researched analysis of the twentieth-century legal and political
wrangling between Native Americans and the federal government over the issue
of just compensation for the fruits of Manifest Destiny.
After a brief account of the resistance, fall, and imprisonment of the
Chiricahuas, the authors turn to a detailed analysis of the formation and opera-
tion of the federal government's Indian Claims Commission, which Congress
created in 1946 to streamline the process of addressing past wrongs and quickly
resolve any outstanding tribal claims. The federal government's optimism was
quickly quashed, however, as numerous claims overwhelmed the commission
and stretched the boundaries of American jurisprudence. As months of delibera-
tions stretched into years of appeals, the Chiricahua Apaches and their legal
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 104, July 2000 - April, 2001, periodical, 2001; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101221/m1/558/?rotate=270: accessed May 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.