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African Americans in South Texas History

Bruce A. Glasrud

Publication Year: 2011

The history of South Texas is more racially and ethnically complex than many people realize. As a border area, South Texas has experienced some especially interesting forms of racial and ethnic intersection, influenced by the relatively small number of blacks (especially in certain counties), the function and importance of the South Texas cattle trade, proximity to Mexico, and the history of anti-black violence. The essays in African Americans in South Texas History give insight into this fascinating history.
The articles in this volume, written over a span of almost three decades, were chosen for their readability, scholarship, and general interest.
Jennifer Borrer
Edward Byerly
Judith Kaaz Doyle
Rob Fink
Robert A. Goldberg
Kenneth Wayne Howell
Larry P. Knight
Rebecca A. Kosary
David Louzon
Sarah R. Massey
Jeanette Nyda Mendelssohn Passty
Janice L. Sumler-Edmond
Cary D. Wintz
Rue Wood

" . . . a valuable addition to the literature chronicling the black experience in the land of the Lone Star. While previous studies have concentrated on regions most reflective of Dixie origins, this collection examines the tri-ethnic area of Texas adjoining Mexico wherein cotton was scarce and cattle plentiful. Glasrud has assembled an excellent group of essays from which readers will learn much."-L. Patrick Hughes, professor of history, Austin Community College

Published by: Texas A&M University Press

Series: Perspectives on South Texas Series, sponsored by Texas A&M University-Kingsville


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pp. c-c

Title Page, Copyright Page

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pp. i-iv


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pp. v-vi

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pp. vii-x

African American history and Texas history have been intertwined since the first Africans and Europeans arrived in this part of the world. Esteban accompanied the Cabeza de Vaca expedition, and blacks accompanied Spanish and mestizo settlers...

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pp. xi-xiv

At a fall 2008 lunch gathering of South Texas historians, aka the Victoria Secrets, the question raised was “Where/what is South Texas?” The essential element to this question, we determined, was “What are the boundaries of South Texas?” Upon ...

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pp. 1-28

The first African Americans to enter South Texas came with Spanish explorers, and thousands more came later as slaves from the United States, in the tow of Anglo owners. Later still—after the Civil War—freed blacks often migrated to Texas...

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Defending the Unnecessary

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pp. 29-45

Though San Antonio is usually perceived as a Mexican or Mexican American city, from 1845–61 it was an antebellum southern city. Its location and the domination of the city’s government by Anglos caused the city to embrace that most distinctive...

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Just Southwest of Dixie

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pp. 46-64

Scholars have produced numerous studies on Reconstruction in Texas since the mid-twentieth century, but they have generally focused on regions in East Texas where African American populations were concentrated. This was natural considering...

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“Wantonly Maltreated and Slain,Simply Because They Are Free”

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pp. 65-84

The San Antonio Expres-News warned in February of 1894 that colonizing African Americans in Liberia to alleviate the “race problem” in Texas was a risky proposition. Not because the state of Texas or the southern region of the United States...

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After Emancipation

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pp. 85-98

Located on U.S. Highway 59 near the Victoria County line in eastern Goliad County, about two hours south of San Antonio, is a highway sign for Cologne, a town that has a unique place in Texas history. Today, there is no town, only three collapsed...

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The Forging of the African AmericanCommunity in Corpus Christi, Texas,1865–1900

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pp. 99-132

Until recently, the African American experience in Texas had not been as thoroughly studied as in other southern states. This can partly be attributed to the fact that slavery in the state became a significant and visible institution only during ...

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Lola and Leon Houck versus theSouthern Pacific Railway Company

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pp. 133-150

At the end of the ninetenth century, many of the nearly eight million African Americans then living in the United States bore witness to deteriorating race relations. The situations they faced provided a bitter reminder of their second-class...

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The Colored Trainmen of America

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pp. 151-176

South Texas urbanized later than many parts of the state due to geographical conditions such as the lack of an available water source and sparse vegetation. Technological advances of the day such as barbed wire and windmills closed the open...

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Divided We Stand

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pp. 177-205

In 1849, Benjamin Roberts, a black resident of Boston, Massachusetts, brought suit against the city’s public school committee on grounds that his daughter, Sarah, had been denied equal access to public schooling because of her race. Sarah Roberts...

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Maury Maverick and Racial Politicsin San Antonio, Texas, 1938–1941

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pp. 206-241

On May 20, 1941, San Antonio mayor Maury Maverick left a sick bed against doctor’s orders and went to a greater San Antonio campaign rally at Hermann Sons Hall. The ailing Maverick was entering the final week in a tense runoff ...

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The Houston Eagles andthe End of the Negro Leagues

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pp. 242-256

African American baseball in Texas had a brief but vibrant history. From the unaffiliated semiprofessional teams that existed around the state to the Texas-Oklahoma-Louisiana League, baseball remained a constant aspect of African American life in ...

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Corpus Christi’s Galvan Ballroom

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pp. 257-279

Relatively few of Corpus Christi’s more historically important cultural landmarks remain intact today. North Beach, which once teemed with arcades and pedestrian traffic, the municipal fishing pier, the saltwater swimming pool, and the...

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Racial Change on the Southern Periphery

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pp. 280-312

The black drive for civil rights has ben the most studied and closely observed social movement in American history. Television brought the movement into the American living room and fixed attention on the issues of the conflict. Journalists ...

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“A Pearl of Great Price”

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pp. 313-328

Regional verse is rarely a sought-after commodity in the literary marketplace; nevertheless, A Time To Be Born, by African American poet, playwright, educator, and social activist Olga Samples Davis, appeared in four editions....

Blacks in South Texas

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pp. 329-334


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pp. 335-338


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pp. 339-340


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pp. 341-358

E-ISBN-13: 9781603444828
E-ISBN-10: 1603444823
Print-ISBN-13: 9781603442299

Page Count: 496
Illustrations: Bib. Index.
Publication Year: 2011

Series Title: Perspectives on South Texas Series, sponsored by Texas A&M University-Kingsville
See more Books in this Series

OCLC Number: 742517353
MUSE Marc Record: Download for African Americans in South Texas History