The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 95, July 1991 - April, 1992 Page: 435

Book Reviews

narrative" (p. 26), the author recalls. Now, years later, the sometime secretary
turned publisher has brought out this rejected chapter as a valuable addition to
More character study than biography or scholarship, Michener treats of two
flawed icons, Santa Anna, the eagle, and Sam Houston, the raven, who seemed
moved by destiny to meet on the banks of the San Jacinto: "It was as if two
powerful birds had entered the sky within a single year . . . each circling and
gaining strength, each progressing in the consolidation of its own powers ...
They would meet only once, a clash of eighteen culminating minutes in the
spring of 1836 which would change the history of the world."
Governor of two states, president of a republic, United States senator, Hous-
ton was a character almost from fiction who died scorned by much of his con-
stituency, only to achieve heroic stature after his death. Santa Anna, owner of
vast estates, eleven times president of his nation, four times exiled for life, was
an "engaging scoundrel" who died in poverty of everything except ambition
and was buried in an obscure grave reserved for the indigent.
All this Michener recounts with the vivid turn of phrase for which he has
become famous. He concludes that Houston is a cherished symbol fondly re-
membered, while Santa Anna is "neither fondly cherished nor fondly remem-
bered but a symbol, nonetheless, of one of the most important eras of Mexico's
history" (pp. 27-28).
In his long prologue, Michener recounts the provenance of the work, which
also serves to flesh out what is more a chaptered monograph than a "book."
Regrettably he not once but twice errs in writing that the eagle and the raven
met only once, at San Jacinto, in contradiction to the scholarship of Margaret
Swett Henson. In her "Politics and the Treatment of Mexican Prisoners after
the Battle of San Jacinto" in the October 1990 issue of the Southwestern Historz-
cal Quarterly, Henson records that the day after his inauguration, President
Houston delivered in person to the defeated general the answer to his request
for an audience with President Jackson.
Such quibble aside, this handsome little volume is one that buffs and collec-
tors alike will want on their shelf of Texas history.
Marshall and Fort Worth MAX S. LALE
From the Land of Shadows: The Making of Grey Owl. By Donald B. Smith. (Saska-
toon, Saskatchewan: Western Producer Prairie Books, 1990. Pp. ix+320.
Maps, photos, acknowledgments, notes, bibliography, index. $24.95.)
Grey Owl (1888-1938), who called himself the modern Hiawatha, was one
of Canada's best-known writers in the 1930s. Speaking as an "Indian," Grey
Owl was an active and eloquent pioneer in the cause of wildlife conservation,
and he called for equitable treatment of Canada's Indian peoples. In truth,
Grey Owl was not, as he claimed, the son of an Apache mother and a Scottish
father who was an army scout in the American West. Rather, Grey Owl was
Archie Belaney from Hastings, England, where two maiden aunts raised him
after he had been abandoned there by his parents. The lonely boy spent his


Upcoming Pages

Here’s what’s next.

upcoming item: 496 496 of 686
upcoming item: 497 497 of 686
upcoming item: 498 498 of 686
upcoming item: 499 499 of 686

Show all pages in this issue.

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. ( accessed July 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History,; crediting Texas State Historical Association.