The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 95, July 1991 - April, 1992 Page: 104
Southwestern Hzstorical Quarterly
dotes however, establish a historical context for the sites along his tour. His
guide is amply illustrated, but it should have had more detailed local maps of
sites as in Simmons's guide. Still, if the reader follows Franzwa's directions, he
or she will come to know the Santa Fe Trail well.
Noble and Franzwa have provided an easily grasped summary of early Santa
Fe and the road that connected it to the United States. Now it remains for us to
use the books as the first steps in our exploration of the trail and city. Certainly,
these works will help mark the path toward a clearer understanding of how
Santa Fe and its famous highway shaped the history of the Southwest.
Southwest Texas State Unweruzty JAMES E. SHEROW
Jornada del Muetto" A Pageant of the Desert. By Brodie Crouch. (Spokane, Wash.:
The Arthur H. Clark Co., 1989. Pp. 219. Preface, acknowledgments, map,
notes, bibliography, index. $28.50.)
"No less than one of the Southwest's most historic and scenic landmarks of
distinction" (p. 192), the Jornada del Muerto region stretches across southern
New Mexico. Instead of following the sharp, westward bend of the Rio Grande
between San Marcial and Rincon, travelers saved time by pushing straight
across the Jornada. Traveled for three centuries, this trail still remains un-
known to most. This book presents a colorful retelling of the stories of this New
The outline for the book is, generally, chronological with chapters covering
the dreams of wealth that first lured adventurers to New Mexico (including
modern treasure stories), the Spanish colonization, and American contacts,
with a chapter devoted to the ill-fated Texas-Santa Fe expedition. The Indian
presence in the region, a pervasive element in the book, also rates a separate
chapter. Crouch describes the Jornada as a crossroads for trade and develops
the military presence in the area, as well as Civil War action in New Mexico.
The author's attention to the railroad towns and ranches that dotted the ninety-
mile route is noteworthy, as is his treatment of author Eugene Manlove Rhodes,
described as the "Jornada Press Agent." The book concludes with chapters
about "the Wild West" era, famous travelers of the Jornada, and modern devel-
opment of the area, including detonation of the first atomic bomb in the New
This book adds to the historiography of New Mexico by covering a region
generally not chosen for special attention. The author's descriptions of the
water sources, travel stops, and trade on the Jornada are significant additions to
the literature of New Mexico. With evident love for his subject, the author
paints, in romantic and heroic terms, a chronicle of southern New Mexico. The
book falls somewhere between history, folklore, and travel guide, as do many
New Mexico histories.
Criticisms of the book include the abbreviated footnote format that necessi-
tates use of the bibliography to decipher source information. Second, the author
could have drawn profitably on the extensive photo archives at the Museum of
New Mexico in Santa Fe or the Rio Grande Historical Collections at Las Cruces
Here’s what’s next.
This issue can be searched. Note: Results may vary based on the legibility of text within the document.
Tools / Downloads
Get a copy of this page .
Citing and Sharing
Basic information for referencing this web page. We also provide extended guidance on usage rights, references, copying or embedding.
Reference the current page of this Periodical.
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 95, July 1991 - April, 1992, periodical, 1992; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117153/m1/132/ocr/: accessed November 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.