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NEW HISTORIC DIGITAL MAP AVAILABLE. SOUTHWEST COLLECTION/SPECIAL COLLECTIONS LIBRARY, TEXAS TECH UNIVERSITY. "What I call the Dorchester map was uploaded into our dspace today. The official title is: Trails made and routes used by the Fourth U.S. Cavalry : under command of General R.S. MacKenzie in its operations against hostile Indians in Texas, Indian-Territory (now Oklahoma), New Mexico and Old Mexico during the period of 1871-2-3-4 and 5. Cut and past the following address into the internet browser For more information please contact Freedonia Paschall at 806-742-3749.

July 26, 2014. FREE WESTERN HERITAGE SYMPOSIUM AT THE NATIONAL MULTICULTURAL WESTERN HERITAGE MUSEUM, 3400 Mount Vernon Ave., Fort Worth, 76103. It is presented by University of Texas at Arlington History Department Chair Dr. W. Marvin Dulaney, Symposium Host and Program Facilitator. The symposium topics are "Necessary Networks: W.E.B. Du Bois in Texas and the Western U.S." presented by Dr. Amilcar Shabazz, and "A History of Fort Worth in Black and White" presented by Dr. Richard Selcer. The event will be 9 a.m.-noon. The event is free and the parking is free. For questions or to RSVP, please contact Executive Director Gloria Austin at (817) 534-8801 or email her at<>.

July 26, 2014. GENEALOGICAL WORKSHOP, FORT WORTH. The Beginners Workshop is a series of eight free presentations sponsored by the Fort Worth Genealogical Society that are open to the public. The sessions are offered on the fourth Saturday (not the last Saturday) of the month from January through August. Workshops are held at the Fort Worth Public Library (main downtown branch), 500 W. Third St., from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. This month's topic is using military records as research tools. The workshop will include a review of American wars, records unique to each, WW I Draft Cards, types of pensions, DAR records, The Confederate Research Center in Hillsboro, and more.

July 26, 2014. FORT WORTH GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY COMPUTER USERS GROUP meetings deal with using computers and the Internet in genealogical research. They are hands-on sessions at the Computer Lab's 24 work stations. Meetings are free and open to the public. They are held from 2-4 p.m. the fourth Saturday of each month, January through August, at the Fort Worth Central Library (Downtown), 500 W. 3rd St., Fort Worth, at the Intel Computer Lab. For more information contact Debbie Pearson, This date is listed on the group's website but there is no workshop description.

July 31, 2014. PETER ROGERS, ARTIST OF ICONIC TEXAS MURAL, TO SPEAK AT STATE LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES. AUSTIN, Texas, July 17 - "Peter Rogers, the artist of "Texas Moves Toward Statehood," a dramatic mural of Texas history that has been a fixture in the lobby of the Lorenzo de Zavala State Archives and Library Building ( for 50 years, will return to Austin for a public talk at the Zavala Building, Thursday,

July 31, at 6 p.m. The building is located at 1201 Brazos Street, Austin, Texas, just east of the State Capitol. Rogers, who lives in New Mexico , will speak about his experience painting the mural, his acquaintance with two governors--Price Daniel who participated in the mural's commission, and John Connally, governor when it was completed in the summer of 1964--details of the mural, and his career in art. A limited quantity of high-quality versions of the mural on paper and canvas signed by the artist will be available for a contribution to the Friends of Libraries & Archives of Texas. Please rsvp at or (512) 463-5460. Targeted News Service (USA) - Friday, July 18, 2014.

August 2, 2014. ANTIQUES ROUND-UP AT THE WICHITA FALLS MUSEUM OF ART AT MIDWESTERN STATE UNIVERSITY. "Purchase tickets today! Representatives from Heritage Auctions, Dallas will be here Saturday, August 2nd for Antiques Round Up! experts in Western art, Texas art, decorative arts, American and European art, jewelry, guns, and Native American art and artifacts will evaluate your art, antiques, artifacts, and/or collectables. You will recognize several of the appraisers from the popular PBS series Antiques Road Show. Bring your treasures! One Item - $25; Two Items - $40; Three Items - $60; All items must be hand carried, no large items please. Contact us for any questions or stop in the museum to purchase tickets today!

August 9, 2014. THE FORT WORTH GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY PRESENTS ITS ANNUAL SUMMER SEMINAR. Registration open: This year's speaker, Lloyd de Witt Bockstruck will discuss "Western Migrations." The event is from 8:15 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., August 9, at Trinity Terrace Towers, 1600 Texas St. in Fort Worth. Registration fee is $40 per person through July 31 and $45 per person beginning August 1. For more information contact Debbie Pearson (817) 691-3257, or Roy Combrink (817) 292-5419,

August 31, 2014. RESTLESS HEART LIVE IN CONCERT_WELLINGTON RITZ THEATRE . "Restless Heart will be performing Live at the Wellington Ritz Theatre on August 31 at 7:30. Restless Heart's many hits include "Bluest Eyes in Texas," "I'll Still Be Loving You," and "Wheels." Tickets go on sale Friday, July 25 at 5:00 pm. Tickets are reserved seating only and are priced at $45.00 and $55.00 for premium seating. You may purchase tickets online at, in person at the theatre, or by calling the theatre at 806-447-0090. We expect this performance to sell out quickly so don't waste any time calling for your tickets!! For more information contact Linda Duke, Theatre Manager (806)447-0090;;<>.


QUANAH ARROW INSTALLED. "A mutually beneficial relationship between Chief Quanah Parker and the ranchers and settlers who ultimately took over Comanche territory is a chapter in Texas and Oklahoma history that's still being written. Midwestern University teacher-student duo Leland Turner and Chris Freeman are taking notes. The installation Saturday of a Quanah Parker Trail Arrow drew Turner and Freeman to Childress to see the 22-foot-tall steel arrow go into place in Fair Park near a lake that once was a watering hole for rancher Charles Goodnight, friend of Chief Quanah, who was the famous son of Comanche captive Cynthia Ann Parker and Comanche war chief Peta Nocona. The arrow is the 76th to pierce the ground in the Texas Plains Trail Region, a 52-county state heritage tourism region. Honoring the legacy of Quanah Parker and the Comanche and other Plains Indians, the arrows are a feature of the Quanah Parker Trail, The project recognizes the history of native peoples in Texas , Chief Quanah Parker in particular, and strengthens the heritage tourism draw of the Texas Panhandle and Plains. For the complete article see Wichita Falls Times Record News (TX) - Sunday, July 20, 2014. Author: Hanaba Munn Welch Special to the Times Record News

IS WINEDALE HISTORIC CENTER SUCCUMBING TO NEGLECT? WINEDALE, Texas (AP) - "The three houses and two barns that date back centuries and dot a 225-acre historic site near Round Top offer a rare look into the lives of some of Central Texas ' earliest settlers. Similar paintings in two of the houses, for example, tell the tale of an itinerant German artist, who in the late 1800s painted both homes in exchange for a place to stay. Such trades were common then, when many immigrants had more talent to offer than cash. Ima Hogg, the Houston philanthropist and preservationist, loved the paintings. At the center of one is a parrot, a notoriously long-lived bird, meant to bring longevity to the family that lived here more than 150 years ago. In the 1960s, Hogg bought and restored the houses and barns and gave them to the University of Texas , wishing longevity to the small community and to the history it represented. She wanted Winedale to become a laboratory for UT students and others to explore history and culture. For a time, it was. But now some fear the old Texas folk museum - home to a popular Shakespeare program - is on its way to dusty death, the Houston Chronicle ( reported. Over the last several decades, Winedale became a getaway for Houstonians. Visitors came to learn farming on weekends. They watched blacksmiths and bought crafts at festivals. They took in the students' plays in an old barn, as they do now. The Shakespeare program is still going strong, but in recent years, Winedale has become a less lively place. Control of the historic site has shifted, and many worry UT has all but lost interest in it . . ." For the complete article go to-- Associated Press State Wire: Texas (TX) - Sunday, July 20, 2014.

STATE TO HONOR TREES. "An initiative is underway to identify one historic tree from each county in the state to be recognized. Surprisingly, Abilene has a number of potential nominees. Some may not be historic, but they mark the spot where something interesting happened or carry a good tale - a mesquite in Rose Park marks the burial spot of a beloved monkey that once roamed freely, or another mesquite named the Buffalo Tree because of a legend that grew up around it. A pecan tree near Buffalo Gap - admittedly not in Abilene, but close - marks the spot where a dugout served as the birthplace in 1879 of a future governor of Arizona. The County Historic Tree Initiative is a project of the Texas Historic Tree Coalition. Gary Barton, Region IV co-chairman, contacted county historical commissions in the state requesting nominations. The general public also is invited to make suggestions. The coalition is looking for three nominations from each of the state's 254 counties, with one being chosen for recognition. The project will originate on the coalition's website,, and may develop into a book. For the complete article go to- Abilene Reporter-News (TX) - Friday, July 18, 2014.

2 REPLICA COLUMBUS SHIPS IN TEXAS TO BE DEMOLISHED. CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (AP) - "Replicas of two ships used by explorer Christopher Columbus have fallen into disrepair at a Texas museum and will be demolished. The Corpus Christi City Council on Tuesday learned more about the dire condition of the Pinta and the Santa Maria following a marine survey. The wooden ships are in dry dock at the Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History . City business liaison Alyssa Michelle Barrera cited repair cost concerns. City staffers will prepare a contract to demolish the ships, which were donated to Corpus Christi by Spain. The ships have been in Texas since the 1990s as part of the celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Columbus voyage. The Columbus Sailing Association will be allowed to salvage parts for another replica in Corpus Christi, the Nina (NEEN'-yuh). Associated Press State Wire: Texas (TX) - Wednesday, July 9, 2014

HARVEY GIRLS HISTORICAL GROUP EXPLORES EL PASO UNION DEPOT. "Patricia Kiddney walked in the steps of railroad history on Monday while exploring the El Paso Union Depot. Kiddney carefully carried manila folders stuffed with photographs and printouts and essays of El Paso's Harvey House restaurant and its Harvey Girls, popular waitresses who were a part of railroad history and credited with bringing a touch of elegance and hospitality to train depots across the Wild West. Kiddney was among a few group members who on Monday explored the former Harvey House restaurant at the Union Depot. The Harvey Girls of El Paso, Texas - a group dedicated to preserving the history of Harvey Girls that worked in El Paso from 1906 to 1948 - have gathered information about the revered waitresses from other Harvey Girls historical organizations and El Pasoans who have memorabilia. El Paso has one of the few active Harvey Girls groups. For the complete article go to-- El Paso Times (TX) - Monday, July 14, 2014.

WILD WEST ' PAST DETAILED IN LECTURE. "Today, tourists make their way to Shackelford County to take in the beauty of the courthouse, to marvel at the Old Jail Art Center, and to enjoy a performance of "Fandangle," a summertime tradition. But it wasn't always so. At one time the land now known as Shackelford County was home to outlaws, buffalo hunters, cowboys, soldiers and even unscrupulous lawmen. The transition from that unruly era to more civilized times took place between 1879 and 1881, an era that could be labeled, "Wild West to Propriety." That was the title chosen for Thursday night's lecture [July 10] at The Grace Museum as part of the ongoing "Home on the Range" exhibit and lecture series. Guest speaker was Molly Sauder, archivist at the Old Jail Art Center, which is the epitome of "propriety." Sauder began work at the Old Jail Art Center six years ago after earning a master's degree in library and information science from the University of Illinois. She was impressed immediately with the cultural gem she found at the art center and with the area's history. For the complete article go to-- Abilene Reporter-News (TX) - Friday, July 11, 2014.

BACK IN TIME: DUST, LIKE WATER, IS DEFINING CHARACTERISTIC OF STAKED PLAINS. MIDLAND - "Water, or the lack of it, is perhaps the greatest defining characteristic of the Staked Plains. However, another common characteristic of this land region would have to be those largely unexpected nuisances known as duststorms. They can turn a bright, sunny West Texas sky nearly as black as night, remove tons of soil from one region to another and create health problems for all of the area's residents. And they combine with another of the Staked Plains' unavoidable resources - the never ceasing wind - to make life miserable at times. Duststorms or sandstorms can be worse in some years than others. Drought years are particularly bad for blowing dust and in the middle 1950s, the Midland Reporter-Telegram, acknowledging that "ladies who have been upset about Hurricane Alice" and the naming of hurricanes with female names, launched the world's first sandstorm advisory board on Jan. 7, 1955. Editor of the Reporter-Telegram at that time, Bill Collyns, said the first three members would be W.M. Perry, chief meteorologist in charge of the U.S. Weather Bureau in Midland; Mrs. Barbara Culver, a Midland attorney and member of the state board of the American Association of University Women; and Midland Chamber of Commerce Manager Delbert Downing. For the complete article go to-- Odessa American, The (TX) - Thursday, July 17, 2014.

GEORGIA O'KEEFFE MUSEUM OPENS OFFICE IN DALLAS. DALLAS (AP) - "The Santa Fe-based Georgia O'Keeffe Museum has opened its first regional office in Dallas as it expands fundraising efforts. The Dallas Morning News reports ( the new office is directed by Betty Brownlee, a patron of Southwestern art who has a long history in fundraising. She says O'Keeffe's connections to Texas made Dallas a logical place to put the museum's first regional office. Before moving to New Mexico, O'Keeffe, inspired by West Texas ' big skies and prairies, painted in the Panhandle. Many of those pieces include images of Palo Duro Canyon. O'Keeffe also taught at Amarillo public schools and at a West Texas college. Source: Associated Press State Wire: Texas (TX) - Monday, July 21, 2014.
WATER PLANNERS FOCUS ON BIGGER TEXAS, NOT A HOTTER ONE - AUSTIN'S DIMINISHING WATER RESOURCES. After Texans overwhelmingly approved spending $2 billion in public funds on new water infrastructure projects last November, Republicans and Democrats alike hailed the state's ability to solve its water woes in the wake of explosive growth and debilitating drought. But as state water planners prepare to spend that money and address Texas' water needs in the coming decades, they are only planning for a bigger Texas - not a hotter one. Scientists say Texas Republican leaders' aversion to reducing the state's economic dependency on carbon-polluting fossil fuels - and their reluctance to acknowledge climate change - prevent the state from properly planning for the impacts of a warming planet on natural resources crucial to its growing population. For the complete article go to- Lubbock Avalanche-Journal (TX) - Tuesday,
July 15, 2014.

CELEBRATED ARTISTS SHOW AT ABRAHAM [PLAINVIEW]. "The American Watercolor Society's One Hundred Forty-Seventh International Exhibition - 2014, is now on view in the Abraham Art Gallery, Malouf Abraham Family Art Center on the campus of Wayland Baptist University. Forty exceptional works in watercolor by some of the most celebrated watercolor artists in America, as well as works by international artists from Italy, Spain, Australia, Canada and Singapore are included in this exhibition . . . Show dates for the American Watercolor Society One Hundred and Forty-Seventh International Exhibition - 2014, in the Abraham Art Gallery are July 11 to Oct. 31, 2014. The gallery is located in the Mabee Learning Resource Center on the WBU campus, and gallery hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday, and 2-5 p.m. Saturday, or by appointment. Catalogs of the show will be available for sale to benefit the scholarship fund. Admission is free. For the complete article go to -- Plainview Daily Herald (TX) - Saturday, July 19, 2014.

CHINESE REALITY SHOW HEADS TO THE BIG TEXAN. "Chinese tourists are putting Amarillo on their vacation maps this summer. Shanghai General Motors is in the midst of its fourth annual Route 66 excursions for Chinese Cadillac owners, with stops in Amarillo. In a separate effort, ICN TV Network, North America's largest Chinese-run television company, will broadcast an episode of travel reality show live from The Big Texan Steak Ranch on Thursday [July 23]. A Shanghai GM group of Chinese tourists arrived in Amarillo on Saturday [July 19] and departed Monday [July 21] in a Route 66 Cadillac caravan headed for the Mother Road's western terminus at Santa Monica, Calif., said Erik Bjella, videographer for Open Road Productions, which is running the trip. Another group will spend time in Santa Monica on Aug. 1 and 2, then load up in the Cadillac SRX vehicles and take the Route 66 road trip in reverse. They will arrive in Amarillo for activities Aug. 8 and 9, said Nick Gerlich. Gerlich, a West Texas A&M University marketing professor and Route 66 enthusiast, is accompanying the groups as not only a Route 66 historian, but also as "a U.S. business and marketing specialist who can educate tour participants on the history and nuances of American commerce." For the complete article go to -- Amarillo Globe-News (TX) - Monday, July 21, 2014.

GOOD NEWS: ENDOWED FUND ESTABLISH BRI QUAIL ENDOWMENT AT SUL ROSS. ALPINE - "The Borderlands Research Institute (BRI) for Natural Resource Management at Sul Ross State University was recently awarded $255,000 to establish the John B. Poindexter Endowed Fund for Desert Quail Research. Dennis Murphree and Roswell "Sandy" Vaughan, Poindexter's longtime friends, organized the covert fundraising effort over the course of several months. The fundraising effort culminated on May 29 at a luncheon at the Coronado Club in Houston, where Vaughan and Murphree presented Louis Harveson, BRI director, with the $255,000 check. For the complete article go to -- Odessa American, The (TX) - Saturday, July 19, 2014.

TRAIL DUST: MANGAS COLORADAS WAS A POWERFUL APACHE CHIEF. "Who was the greatest Apache chief and warrior of them all? Geronimo, Cochise, Victorio, Nana? Men raised in the border country invariably claimed that honor belonged to Mangas Coloradas. His name, often misspelled Mangus Coloradas, meant Red Sleeves in Spanish. Whites generally referred to him simply as Mangas. Standing six feet six in his moccasins, he had a long, thick torso, short bow-legs and a huge head with a hooked nose resembling an eagle's beak. For sheer ferocity he was unmatched in all Apachedom . . ." For the complete article go to-- Santa Fe New Mexican, The (NM) - Friday, July 11, 2014.

COWBOY REUNION'S A YEARLY FAVORITE. "Among all the events and activities, the 84th annual Texas Cowboy Reunion in Stamford featured the John and Dolores Compere family enjoying what has been described as the world's largest amateur rodeo from their box near the bucking chutes. For the complete article go to-- Abilene Reporter-News (TX) - Monday, July 14, 2014.

COLORADO STATE UNIVERSITY PROFESSOR WILL LEAD TEAM TELLING STORY ABOUT WORLD WAR II JAPANESE AMERICAN CONFINEMENT CAMPS IN NEW MEXICO. "While working in New Mexico , Sarah Payne came to realize that most residents were not aware of a dark chapter in the state's history . New Mexico , like many other states in the American West, was home to several Japanese American confinement sites. And Payne made it her goal to help educate New Mexicans about the camps and their impact on the state and those interned. For the complete article go to -- Targeted News Service (USA) - Thursday, July 10, 2014.

RINGSIDE SEAT: PARK NAME STRIKES SORE SPOT. "Hollywood portrayed Bonnie and Clyde as glamorous, misunderstood killers. Tabloids treated mob boss John Gotti as a celebrity. Richard Dean says the state of New Mexico did something even worse by elevating Mexican revolutionary Pancho Villa from international terrorist to folk hero. A state park near Columbus carries Villa's name. Dean considers this tantamount to naming Ground Zero in New York City after Osama bin Laden, or placing a monument at Pearl Harbor to the Japanese pilots who bombed the American naval base. Columbus is the border town that Villa's men attacked in 1916. They killed eight U.S. soldiers and 10 civilians. One was a pregnant woman. Another was Dean's great-grandfather, James T. Dean, a 62-year-old grocer who previously had worked as a lawyer and a judge. Richard Dean, himself a resident of Columbus, is 81 years old and needs dialysis three times a week because his kidneys are failing. He says he still has one mission left in life: persuading the New Mexico Legislature to erase Villa's name from the state park. For the complete article see-- Santa Fe New Mexican, The (NM) - Sunday, July 13, 2014.

PANTEX ROCKET MOVES TO N.M. "A New Mexico nuclear science museum is the new home for a former nuclear-capable rocket that had been stored for years at the Pantex Plant. The MGR-1 rocket "Honest John" from Pantex originally was acquired from the English Field aviation museum near Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport. Workers at the Nuclear Incident Response Program facility, which is also located near the airport, acquired the rocket when the museum closed in 2008, according to information from Pantex contractor Consolidated Nuclear Security. The "Honest John" was stored at Pantex for several years until arrangements were made with the National Museum of Nuclear Science and History to haul the Cold War relic to its new home in Albuquerque. The Pantex Paint Shop applied a new coat of paint to the rocket and partially filled it with concrete. Last month, Pantex transportation specialists loaded the rocket, which weighed about a ton and was roughly 25 feet long, onto a flatbed truck already headed west on another delivery. The inert rocket will be joined onto a mobile launcher at the Albuquerque museum. For the complete article see -- Amarillo Globe-News (TX) - Thursday, July 10, 2014.

COMANCHES COME HOME TO WALTERS' SULTAN PARK. WALTERS - "This weekend marks the homecoming of the Numunu Nation with the arrival of the 62nd Annual Walters Homecoming celebration and powwow at Sultan Park in Walters. Beginning Friday [July 18] evening and continuing through the weekend [July 19-20], Comanches will come together to dance, reunite and visit with family and friends. It is a homecoming for the Lords of the Plains as the annual return to Sultan Park will be dotted with tents, trailers and teepees aplenty as the sounds of whoops and lulus provide a soundtrack for the campground. The annual homecoming was born from an integral part of Comanche culture: Warriors were once met with celebration upon their return from successful battles and raids. When the Comanches became citizens of the United States, the warrior culture transferred into service within the various branches of the U.S. military. The warrior's homecoming celebration was a cultural casualty until the end of World War II. World War I veteran Herbert Homovich of Walters helped organize the first homecoming for Comanche soldiers returning from World War II. Remembering how he and his fellow Comanche vets never received their ceremonial gathering at their war's end, he is remembered for his desire to not let that happen to another generation. His tradition continues to this day. For the complete article go to-- Lawton Constitution, The (OK) - Tuesday, July 15, 2014.

NATIVE AMERICAN EXHIBIT PREVIEWED TO 'CHANGE WHAT PEOPLE KNOW, TELL REAL STORY'. "A crowd of about 75, many representing various Native American tribes from throughout the region, gathered Tuesday at Dornick Hills Country Club for a preview of the latest Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian exhibit, set to premiere this fall. Sponsored by Ardmore's Sullivan Insurance Agency, Elaine Webster, assistant director for museum advancement at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, presented the seven-years-in-the making exhibit that will "change what people know, and tell the real story." The "Nation to Nation: Treaties between the United States and the American Indian Nations" will open to the public on Sept. 21 at the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C., a day after the 10-year anniversary of the museum's opening. For the complete article go to -- Daily Ardmoreite, The (Ardmore, OK) - Wednesday, July 16, 2014.

THOMAS BERGER, 'LITTLE BIG MAN' AUTHOR, IS DEAD AT 89. July 21, 2014. "Thomas Berger, the reclusive and bitingly satirical novelist who explored the myths of the American West in "Little Big Man" and the mores of 20th-century middle-class society in a shelf of other well-received books, died on July 13 in Nyack, N.Y. He was 89 . . . To many critics, "Little Big Man" was Mr. Berger's best novel and a worthy addition to the American canon. (The Dial Press plans a 50th-anniversary trade paperback edition this year.) "Few creative works of post-Civil War America have had as much fiber and blood of the national experience in them," the historian and novelist Frederick Turner wrote in The Nation in 1977. Brooks Landon, Mr. Berger's biographer, placed "Little Big Man" in a tradition of American frontier literature begun by James Fenimore Cooper. Henry Miller heard echoes of Mark Twain in it . . .

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Bob Alexander’s "Riding Lucifer’s Line" is a well researched collection of twenty-five sketches about Texas Rangers who died by gunshot in the performance of their duties along the Texas-Mexican border between the years 1875-1921. Writing from the knowledgeable perspective of a retired U.S. Government Treasury officer, Alexander undertook a formidable task piecing together the often-obscure and many times incomplete life stories of these selected lawmen. This is not an easy task. Historical records relating to Texas Rangers are frequently spotty and incomplete for a variety of reasons. Some were lost to fire or other calamity while others curiously somehow vanished from state archives, county courthouses and other repositories. These Rangers commonly moved from job to job inside and outside law enforcement seldom staying in one location or position for long periods. Pay was low, hardship plentiful and life threatening danger a constant factor.

Alexander’s Rangers met death in a variety of ways ranging from accident to ambush with a surprising number being the result of inexperience and the absence of modern tactical training. Early day Rangers had to learn law enforcement mostly by performing the job and sometimes this in itself proved deadly particularly on the Texas-Mexican border. An example of this was the 1890 death of Texas Ranger Private John H. Gravis in Presidio County. Gravis had been a Ranger for about five months when he and a deputy sheriff got into a gunfight in the rowdy silver mining town of Shafter. The young Ranger lost his life after being shot in the head. While conflicting accounts cloud the details Alexander pointedly summed up the tragedy by writing “On the Texas/Mexican border rookies were but the raw meat of the devil”. Another example emerged with the death of Ranger Robert E. Doaty some two years later. Doaty had been a Ranger for only twenty-two days when he met death in another border shoot out. The same is true for Eugene B. Hulen killed in Presidio County in 1915 after being a Ranger forfifty-seven days.

Although the author’s wordy writing style might burden some, Alexander does offer the dedicated reader an insight infrequently found in the innumerable volumes of Texas Ranger history. The author avoids the Texas Ranger mythology pitfalls of Walter Prescott Webb and others painting a realistic and sometimes gritty picture of these lawmen as they met their end. There are no stereotypes present in these stories. In a lengthy two-part introduction Alexander lays out his premise in which he acknowledges the wrongs and abuses of some pre-modern era Rangers. He traces the evolution of the Texas Rangers from their early days as Indian and bandit fighters and gunmen to today’s lawmen through advancements in transportation, tactics and technology. While Alexander promises, “no white washing” in his effort he does somewhat subjectively present the lawman’s point of view relegating divergent analysis to being somehow less than creditable. While Alexander seems to disdain the work of agenda driven scholars and those he considers to be “armchair historians”, he does not hesitate to make use of such research.

No one doubts that law enforcement on the Texas-Mexican border is and always has been a very risky but necessary profession. It is also controversial mostly during the bloody years of the Mexican Revolution. This book will probably appeal more to Texas Ranger enthusiasts and less to those persuaded by revisionist views. However, it is an insightful work deserving consideration by all. These Rangers who gave their lives certainly merit inclusion in the pages of history. How and why they died is a worthy topic for reflection. Alexander’s effort is to be commended. As Louis R. Sadler put it “This is Bob’s best book to date” and it is.

"Riding Lucifer’s Line: Ranger Deaths Along the Texas-Mexican Border". By Bob Alexander. Denton: University of North Texas Press, 2013. Pp. xxvi, 404. Photographs. Notes. Bibliography. Index. $29.95 cloth.

Glenn Justice

Used with contractual permission of
"The Americas: A Quarterly Review of Inter-American Cultural History"
Copyright 2014

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Nick Kotz ‘ latest book “The Harness Maker’s Dream: Nathan Kallison and the Rise of South Texas” is a well-written and carefully researched piece of Texas history. Kotz tells the story of his uncle, Nathan Allison, born in the Ukrane, who left his native homeland and braved considerable odds to come to the United States in 1890. Living for a time in Chicago the young man married, started learning English and took up harness making. In 1899, Kallison moved his wife and family to San Antonio where he set up a one-room leather goods shop. The venture eventually grew into one of the largest farm and ranch supply businesses in the state.

The Harness Makers Dream is not just a history of a sucessful businessman. Nathan Allison was Jewish and Kotz’s book details the struggles of Jewish immigrants in Texas as well as their contributions to society and the economy. San Antonio born author Nick Kotz has penned a number of books and some years back won the Pulitzer Prize for his newspaper reporting. He is perhaps best known for a 2005 book: “Judgment Days: Lyndon Baines Johnson, Martin Luther King Jr., and the Laws That Changed America”. The Harness Maker’s dream is published by TCU Press, ISBN: 978-0-87565-567-3.


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According to Fort Davis historian Barry Scobee, Comanche Chief Quanah Parker showed up in Fort Davis in the last part of the nineteenth century. As Quanah put it, he came in search of “the gift-of-God cactus to lighten the Red man’s burden”. Accompanied by Chief Rising Star and several other dignitaries from the Indian Territory, Chief Quanah arrived at the Lempert Hotel much to the astonishment of a Miss Finck who presumably worked at the desk. Scobee described this most unusual occurrence. “Miss Finck heard a knock at the door and was somewhat startled to see three heap big Indians standing there in stately silence”. Mr. Fox, an Indian agent accompanying the party, stepped forward explaining that the chief and his two traveling companions came on a peaceful mission simply wishing to obtain bed and board while they searched for peyote somewhere in vicinity of Mitre Peak. Quanah apparently told the Indian agent that Comanche traditions taught the wonderful cactus could not be found in any other locality.

While Scobee’s intriguing glimpse into the past ends there, there is more to the story, much more. Chief Quanah Parker likely knew the Texas Big Bend a lot better than most folks today might expect. Born about 1850 probably near Elk Creek near the Wichita Mountains of today’s Oklahoma, Quanah rose to become the principal Comanche leader during and after the Texas Panhandle Red River War. Quanah’s mother, a white woman of Scotch-Irish extraction taken captive at the age of nine years from Fort Parker, Texas in 1836 is Cynthia Ann Parker. Her story became immortalized in the dark but classic John Wayne movie The Searchers. Quanah came from an impressive line of Comanche chieftains including his father, Peta Nocona, who Quanah said, died of complications from wounds received during a fight with the Apache. Iron Jacket, Quanah’s grandfather, got his name because he wore a Spanish coat of mail in battle. Comanche legend has it that Iron Jacket had the ability to blow threatening bullets away from him with his breath.

Following the death of his father, Chief Wild Horse of the Destanyuka band took the ten year old Quanah Parker under his wing teaching the boy the warrior ways of the Comanche. It is not clear at what point the Comanche first used peyote in shamanistic ceremonies. According to anthropologist Dr. Omar C. Stewart who is considered to be an expert in the study of peyote use by Native Americans, the Comanche probably first learned about peyote during their raids to steal horses as they traveled on the Comanche trail across west Texas into Chihuahua. It is here that the young Quanah most likely first encountered the magical cactus.

While Quanah Parker cannot be credited with introducing peyote to his people he became, according to Stewart, “the most important Comanche roadman in the early history of peyotism”. Long before the arrival of the Comanche, the Native Americans of Mexico including the Tarahumara knew of the power of peyote as a natural medicinal drug. Christian Tarahumaras also associated peyote with their faith. They also applied it to snake bites, wounds, and burns, and thought it cured cure rheumatism. But its power went beyond that. The Tarahumara believed if a man carried peyote on his person that bears could not bite them or deer run away, that game would become tame and easy to kill. During the early 1700’s Chihuahua experienced a considerable number of Spanish Inquisition investigations into the possession and use of Peyote.

U. S. Army Captain Valery Havard, a surgeon stationed in the 1880’s near Presidio became one of the first Anglo physicians to describe the use of peyote and mescal beans in the Big Bend. He noted the beautiful flower produced by the peyote cactus and its presence in most Mexican houses. Although Havard said peyote is mostly an intoxicant he thought it to be good for the relief of fever. The good doctor also pointed out that if one chewed the magical cactus a “delirious exhilaration” could be experienced and that peyote in those days was known as “dry whiskey”.

Quanna liked his peyote for more than one reason. In 1896 an observer saw him sit up all night during a peyote ceremony and eat thirty buttons. The following morning Quanna seemed unaffected and alert. He once sent a roadman to Mexico to obtain 8,000 buttons. Perhaps the chief summed it up best when he said, “The White man goes to his church and talks about Jesus. The Indian goes to his tipi and talks with Jesus.” Perhaps Quanah became a believer in the power of peyote when he went to visit his brother John Parker in Chihuahua about 1885. Previously he opposed the use of peyote. During the visit a Spanish bull is said to have somehow attacked the great chief leaving him with a terrible wound that resulted in a bad case of blood poisoning and fever. Other accounts state that Quanah only contracted some sort of stomach disorder. Whatever the case, a shaman mixed him a strong potion made from peyote juice and he recovered. Apparently Quanah believed the concoction cured him because after that time he became an ardent supporter of the use of peyote.

As a whole, the Comanche and Quanah in particular never really had much confidence the Ghost Dance Movement of 1890. Quanah respected the white man’s religion but when told by the U. S. Secretary of the Interior that he must give up all of his wives except one and he had three, the great chief replied “Mr. Secretary you tell them”. Multiple wifes and peyote were two things Chief Quanah never compromised. He became a quite successful businessman making money in cattle and land. But even in his last days took an active part in peyote ceremonies described the Half Moon ceremony or the Quanah Parker Way.

Quanah Parker died in 1911 but not long before his death C. S. Simmons observed the great chief conduct a peyote ceremony at his home outside Lawton, Oklahoma. “At about three o’clock in the morning, the silent hour and the time of the greatest manifestation of power, Quanah, the leader, knelt before the altar and prayed earnestly. Then, taking the eagle feathers in both hands, he arose to his feet. I saw at once he was under great inspiration. His whole personality seemed to change. His eyes glowed with a strong light and his body swayed to and fro, vibrating with some powerful emotion. Has sang the beautiful song “Ya-na-ah-away” in a most grand and inspiring manner. Then all sang together in harmony. They prayed to God and Jesus and sang of a “narrow way”.

Glenn Justice

Note: Larry Francell tells me that when Quanah Parker came to Fort Davis the chief stayed at the Lempert Hotel not the Limpia Hotel. The present day Limpia Hotel was not constructed until 1912. In the 1880's an earlier Limpia Hotel did operate near the fort but this is not where Quanah stayed according to Larry. The old Lempert Hotel is today the Veranda Bed and Bed and Breakfast. Thanks for the info Larry!

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In 1897 Andrew Prude purchased three sections of land located not far from Fort Davis establishing the A. G. Prude Ranch. Soon he and his wife Ora moved into a small log cabin on their new property. In 1900 Andrew completed a wooden frame house for his family and in 1902 added 1257 acres to the ranch. In 1911 Andrew built a two story ranch house made of adobe bricks cast in a nearby stock tank. They called it the "Big House". By 1920 Prude expanded his ranch to some forty sections of land which comprised a considerable amount of Jeff Davis County.

In 1921 the Prude Ranch started a guest ranch to share the beauty of the land and cool summer weather of the Davis Mountains with city dwellers from across Texas. Early guests arrived on the Southern Pacific Railroad at Alpine and made their way to the ranch by various means. When a terrible drought and the Great Depression of the 1930's forced Andrew Prude to sell his cattle and most of his land, the Prude family decided to operate the guest ranch full time. Soon a new highway near the ranch came into existence and more and more guests began to show up. New guest houses were built as well as a coaching school. The dude ranch program was expanded to include summer camps for boys and girls and various educational programs. The facilities have expanded over the years to accommodate a wide variety of activities. Prude ranch is well known across Texas as a popular tourist destination and continues into the second century of operation.

How the ranch came into existence and continues to operate today after all these years is a fascinating story of determination and survival. Historian Glenn Justice used many primary sources and oral interviews to tell the story of this now famous Texas ranch.

Cattle and Dudes: A Family History of the Prude Ranch 1897-1997 is now available on Amazon as an E-book. For more information or to order go to: ... le%26dudes

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David Dorward arrived in Borden County in 1892. He was born December 15, 1872 in Burleson County Texas to David and Anna Dorward. In 1893 David began working as a wagon cook for the Square and Compass Ranch. A year later he went to work for the Magnolia Land and Cattle Company. In 1901 David became a businessman when he opened the Dorward Drug on the courthouse square in Gail, Texas.

Gail was a thriving community in the early 1900’s. A week after opening his drug store, he married Minnie Russell who taught school in Gail. To this union came three sons, Russell, Maurice and Kelvin. David did home study for his pharmacist license and had it issued by the Texas Board of Pharmacy on September 17, 1907.

Doward supplied prescriptions for two local physicians, Dr. James Prince and Dr. John H. Hannabass. As the little town began to dwindle in population Doward”s Drug became the meeting place of the community by providing over the counter medicines, refreshments, and even ice for the old time iceboxes of the day. When the local telephone switchboard closed in 1918, Doward’s Drug had the only telephone serving Gail and the surrounding farms and ranches until the 1950’s. Telephone messages received by Mr. Dorward at the store would be delivered to local residents or to outlying farms and ranches. David Dorward also served by holding the offices of county treasurer and later served as Borden County Judge.

David and Minnie became strong proponents of the Christian faith. David taught adult Sunday school classes for thirty years and Minnie taught classes for over fifty years. Their dedication left a legacy to the residents of Borden County. After their passing, the Doward Drug building went through many years of neglect until 2012 when R. D. “Buster” and Jean Creighton Taylor acquired the property. Much back breaking work ensued hauling away junk that had accumulated around the property. Jean and Buster were able to salvage the original walls, ceiling, shelving, soda machine and safe from eventual destruction. The pharmacy counter and samples of medicines and many other Dorward treasures may be viewed at the Borden County Museum.

The dedication of the Dorward Drug historical marker will take place on Saturday, June 21 at 2 p.m. in Gail A reception will follow at the Borden County Event Center. For more information contact Lisa Mahler at:

Lisa Mahler

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I am most pleased to announce my book "Little Known History Of The Texas Big Bend: Documented Chronicles From Cabeza De Vaca To The Era Of Pancho Villa" is now available in an E-Book edition at Amazon.

For more information go to: ... e+big+bend
Additional Amazon E-Book titles from Rimrock Press are coming soon!

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Some ten years ago when I first got the idea to do an online blog about Texas history I had no idea how many folks might be interested in such a focus. Last month Glenn’s Texas History Blog set a new record for readership. According to my latest site analytics in August, 38,764 readers worldwide searched out and read at least one page of the blog. This is an average of 1,250 readers per day. Some 18,871 of these readers are located in the United States followed by 4,275 in the United Kingdom, 3,302 in China, 1,013 in Canada, 567 in the Ukrain, 242 in France, 173 in Germany, 138 in Russia, 109 in Australia, with numerous other readers in Japan, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Mexico, Spain and Singapore. A number of these overseas readers are U. S. service men and women stationed around the world.

Most find their way to the blog via Google although there is quite a list of search engines that have been used. A fair number of the readers access the blog with their smart phones something I never dreamed about ten years ago. Recently my internet guru Mike Middleton updated the blog software and I have a feeling he had something to do with the recent upsurge. I cannot thank Mike enough for all of his fine work through the years. Anyone needing a really first class web page design and IT work can contact Mike at:


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On Wednesday, August 14, 2013, 08:48 PM, Sanjay Nasta wrote:

I thought your readers might be interested in the Texas Historical Marker App for the iPhone. The Texas Historical Landmarks app gives you access to detailed historical information to over 14,000 historical markers designated by the Texas Historical Commission.

We built this app because when driving through Texas, I always wondered what a historical marker on the side of the road said, I didn't always have time to stop and look at each marker. We decided to build this app to answer that question and to help educate people about our state's rich history.

The app provides an easy to use map interface that allows you to pinpoint what historical markers are close to you, retrieve driving directions to each marker, keep a tally of the markers you have visited, and even record photos at each visited marker. While traveling, you even have the ability to receive notifications anytime you are closing in on a landmark.

Texas Historical Landmarks is currently available in the app store at:
(there is a free version available with less data if you want to play)

To learn more about the app including screen shots, features, and video see here:

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Dear Friends and Members of the West Texas Historical Association (WTHA)

It is not often that we have news that needs to be sent forward by itself owing to its importance. Many of us who love history and are involved in this association and others like it occasionally rue the seemingly diminished awareness of history. However, there is a center of history excellence alive and well in the heartland of West Texas that is incubating and nurturing the love of history in the next generation. Mr. Richard LaMascus a Social Science Teacher at Hereford High School has guided an award winning Special Projects social science program that has exhibited state and national excellence. The WTHA encountered him with his students at a recent Quanah Parker Trail installation where one of them, Matthew Wilhelm, helped organize and raise money for the arrow installation. He is a member of a much larger program that built on the good work of long-time educator and school board member Carolyn Waters.

The current Special Projects program has expanded the horizon of social studies among the high school students in Hereford, Texas. The list of accomplishments are extensive and they include Hereford winning the Texas UIL Team Social Science Championship two of the last four years and one student, Andrew White, took first place this year at State with his Interpretive Web Site--Devils Rope [barbed wire]-- and advanced to the National History Day Competition in College Park Maryland. Mr. LaMascus said that West Texas is a hot-bed for educational excellence, ". . . our region encompassing El Paso to Fort Worth including the entire Texas Panhandle has been the most competitive in the State of Texas."

Congratulations to the students and teachers at Hereford ISD. All of West Texas applauds you. For LaMascus’ comments about the Hereford High School Special Projects Social Science program please see the note below.
Best wishes, Tai

Tai Kreidler
Executive Director
West Texas Historical Assn

E. Richard LaMascus
Hereford high School
Social Studies Department Head
UIL Academic Coach

Thank you for your interest in the History program here at Hereford High School. My name is Richard LaMascus and I am starting my 14th year as a Social Studies Teacher at Hereford High School and my second year as the High School’s Social Studies Department Head. One of the first people I met upon moving to Hereford is Carolyn Waters. She has been and continues to be a wonderful teacher/mentor, school board member, and supporter of the History programs in and around Deaf Smith County.Reflecting on the photos taken of last year’s Special Topic’s History group, I truly did not realize how much we participated in and/or accomplished this past school year. Among the places visited and programs participated in include:

•Museum of the Plains – Perryton TX, Lecture and question and answer session with S.C. Gwynne, Author of “Empire of the Summer Moon”.
•Presentations to Hereford’s Lion’s Club twice, and the Quanah Parker Trail committee.
•Touring the Crosby County Museum, Deaf Smith County Museum, Panhandle Plains Museum, Palo Duro Canyon and Blanco Canyon.
•We visited and toured several Texas Forts including: Fort Phantom Canyon in Abilene, Fort Concho in San Angelo, Fort McKavett outside of Menard TX, and the still being excavated Spanish Presidio along the San Saba River.
•We competed in several different area, state, and national contests including: The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Columbus essay writing contest, and in History Day and UIL Academic competitions in Canyon, Lubbock, Abilene, Austin, and College Park Maryland. Andrew White and I also spent three days touring Washington D.C., Gettysburg PA, and Harpers Ferry WV.
•Eagle Scout Matthew Wilhelm helped organize and raise money for the Quanah Parker Trail Arrows placed in Hereford.

Two years ago, Hereford High School began a Special Topics/Research class aimed at providing an option for but not exclusive to GT students’ grades 10 thru 12. The TEKS (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills) for this class encourage students to research, analyze, and create projects under the Social Studies theme. Simply put, we research analyze and write at a much deeper level than our normal survey classes. We began creating projects for the Texas History Day competition where the requirements for research, annotated bibliographies, and in-depth study fit perfectly with the requirements for this class. The students also study and work towards our UIL Competitions specifically, Current Issues and Events, and Social Studies.

Each of the past two years, Hereford High School has qualified seven to eight students to the Texas History Day competition in Austin Texas. This past May one student, Andrew White, took first place at State with his Interpretive Web Site entitled “The Devil’s Rope” advancing to the National History Day Competition in College Park Maryland. His success has inspired many of my Special Topics students to give it their all this upcoming year wanting to equal or surpass what this fine young man accomplished in 2013.
I also have the privilege of coaching our State winning UIL Social Studies Team. We have won almost every competition entered the past seven years. Our accomplishments include:

•Seven straight District Championships and numerous invitational tournament championships.

•Three Regionals Championships where for the past decade, our region encompassing El Paso to Fort Worth including the entire Texas Panhandle has been the most competitive in the State of Texas

•Five straight years qualifying for the UIL State Academic Tournament winning two State Championships in 2010 and 2013.

Our assigned topics varied greatly including the American Revolution, The Supreme Court, Sub-Saharan Africa, American Civil War, US Space Exploration, Latin America, and last year’s Native American History. This year’s topic may be the most challenging yet, Australia and Oceania; with the assigned book, “Commonwealth of Thieves” the Birth of Australia, by Thomas Keneally. Many top students in Hereford High School will once again compete for one of the final four spots on this great Academic team.
Just a note, over the past decade, Hereford’s UIL Social Studies team has included many of our Valedictorians and Salutatorians and numerous others who have gone on to prestigious universities including the Air Force Academy, Notre Dame, Texas A&M, and of course Texas Tech. Five or more students from past teams have entered Texas Tech’s Honor’s program majoring in Engineering. Student scholarships are far too numerous to count. Andrew White’s Website as discussed in Not Even Past

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