The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 95, July 1991 - April, 1992 Page: 268

Southwestern Hzstorzcal Quarterly

Simply put, this study will become a standard resource for scholars writing
about events in northeast Mexico. It reads much like a "handbook" and is even
designed like one. What is now needed is for someone to put flesh on the bones
that Salinas has conveniently provided.
Atlas of American Indian Afafans. By Francis Paul Prucha. (Lincoln: University of
Nebraska Press, 199o. Pp. 191. Preface, maps, notes, references, index.
This is a no-frills volume that depicts the changing fortunes of Indians of the
United States from 1789 to the Ig8os. Eschewing such nonessentials as colored
maps, photos, or narrative explanationis of his maps, Prucha lets his cartogra-
phy speak for itself. The only concession is to include the sources for each map
and brief supplementary data in a separate section at the end of the book. Ar-
ranged on a topical basis, sections are devoted to such subjects as census enu-
merations of Indians since 189o, land cessions, reservations, agencies and
schools, army posts, and major Indian campaigns. Indian affairs in both Okla-
homa and Alaska have their own sets of maps.
The atlas, for all its merit, is sadly mistitled. It is not an atlas of "American
Indian Affairs." Instead it relates almost exclusively to events within the bor-
ders of the United States since 1789. No maps refer to Indian matters in Can-
ada, Mexico, or-needless to say-Central or South America. More puzzling is
the omission of maps relating to the colonial period. King Phillip's War, the
League of the Iroquois, and the Spanish mission frontier are all missing.
Based primarily on official records, the maps and supplementary data pro-
vide both answers and questions. One is surprised to note that the Native
American-a term unusued by Prucha-population of Texas rose almost fif-
teen fold (2,700 to 40,ooo) between 1950 and 1980. More perplexing is the re-
ported decline in Oklahoma's Indian population by over 40 percent between
1930 and 1950 (p. 143). The maps on Indian land cessions, informative as they
may be, are somewhat confusing. The Indian territory north of the Red River
is consistently shown after 1820 as land no longer held by Indians. While it had
been ceded by its original occupants, there is no indication that it had become
the home of the largest concentration of Indians in the United States.
Indeed the entire set of maps on Oklahoma are disappointing. One on In-
dian Territory, 1855-1866 (p. 71 ), shows only the reservation boundaries and
the major military posts. Missing are tribal capitals and other settlements, sites
of schools and missions, and any reference to the Civil War in Indian Territory.
One would never know from the maps that the war had a serious impact on
American Indians.
Among the most useful maps for Texas are a series depicting the location of
frontier army garrisons for the entire nineteenth century. These show dramati-
cally the continual shifts in military needs. A splendidly detailed and informa-
tive map (pp. 9o-9i) shows all the frontier posts in Texas and surrounding re-
gions together with their years of occupancy. In sharp contrast, a map devoted
to the Red River War of 1874-1875 is one of the least Informative in the book.


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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 95, July 1991 - April, 1992, periodical, 1992; Austin, Texas. ( accessed October 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History,; crediting Texas State Historical Association.